County Commission approves FY 2023 budget, recognizes Ronald Park

Cullman County Commission Chairman Jeff Clemons, Commissioner Kerry Watson, County Road Department retiree Ronald Park, Commissioner Garry Marchman and County Engineer Bryan Cheatwood (Amy Leonard for The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – The Cullman County Commission on Tuesday night approved its $70 million-plus budget.  

County Administrator John Bullard said, “We want to be able to budget and stick to that budget” when presenting the updated budget, which was approved unanimously. The budget is available at:


County Road Department employee Ronald Park was recognized by the commission for his 26 years of service upon his retirement. Park joked that he had, “never worked a day in my life” when working for the department. 

In other business, the following items were approved: 

  • Change speed limit to 15 mph on County Road 1150 
  • Change speed limit to 20 mph on County Road 757 
  • Change speed limit to 30 mph on County Road 76 
  • CARTS Third-Party Service Contracts- FY 2023- yearly contract renewals 
  • Amend Item R from the Aug. 16, 2022, meeting minutes to reflect the installation of GPS in County vehicles from One Step GPS in the amount of $13.95 per vehicle per month. The item was previously approved, but County Coroner Jeremy Kilpatrick found a lower price afterward. The commission opted to approve the new deal. 
  • Authorize workers’ comp renewal with County Risk Services for FY 2023 in the amount of $553,375.31. The annual renewal is up 10% over last year, but the contract is eligible for dividend payments. A recent dividend payment was received by the commission for $36,000. 
  • Authorize EMA director to apply for and sign for grant in the amount of $30,000 with the Alabama Department of Public Health to purchase supplies/or equipment for the State Mortuary Operations Response Team. County EMA Director Tim Sartain explained this is a 100% funded grant, therefore it will be no cost to the County. 
  • Authorize chairman and EMA director to sign Emergency Management Performance Grant (EMPG) in the amount of $2,342- annual grant renewal 
  • Authorize County administrator to sign billing authorization form for lnfintech BridgePay for credit card processing at County parks. Doug Davenport of County Parks and Recreation explained that the current company changed hands multiple times, making credit card processing impossible at times. No such issues are expected with the new company.  
  • Authorize The Link of Cullman County Trunk or Treat in the parking lot of the Cullman County Extension Office/Board of Education Building on Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2022, from 4-9 p.m. 
  • Authorize Chairman Jeff Clemons to sign the Alabama Department of Youth Services Agency Grant Agreement for FY 2022-2023 in the amount of $184,340 as the fiscal agent for Cullman County Juvenile Court (CCJC). This is an annual contract renewal. 
  • Ratify Bid No. 1405 for Rail Track Construction Project for Sportsman Lake to SDAC Rail Services in the amount of $58,142.72 and authorize chairman to sign all related paperwork 
  • Authorize chairman to sign scheduled service agreement with TRANE through Omnia Cooperative (Contract No. 15- JLP-023) in the amount of $41,784 and building automation systems agreement in the amount of $3,813.25 for the HVAC system in the Cullman County Detention Center- annual service contract for HVAC. 
  • Consider a one-year maintenance agreement with Johnston Technologies, Inc for battery back­ up for the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office in the amount of $5,484 and authorize signature of all related documents.  
  • Consider authorizing the chairman to sign the North Alabama Highway Safety Grant for FY 2023. This is a 100% grant for high traffic/incident areas. 
  • Consider renewal of Southern Health Partners Health Services Agreement at 3% increase, base price $740,094.96 and authorize chairman to sign all related documents. The 3% increase was built into the original contract. Sheriff Matt Gentry recommended the approval. 
  • Consider adopting revisions to the Cullman County Commission Employee Handbook, effective Oct. 1, 2022. Several changes to the policy were adopted at different times throughout the year. Eleven changes will go into the handbook which will be published online and be public record. 
  • Consider the surplus of a 2005 Ford Crown Victoria (Vin No. 2FAFP71W45X156137) to be donated to State Probation-Cullman County Office 
  • Consider the surplus of a 2007 Ford Explorer from the Sheriff’s Office fleet (Vin No. 1FMEU63E87UB28358) to be donated to the Town of Colony 
  • Proposed plat at Hidden Hills subdivision, a major subdivision containing 58 lots located off County Road 2120.  
  • Proposed plat at Johnny’s Junction subdivision, a minor subdivision containing three lots located off County Road 1763.  
  • Award Bid No. 1409: Cold Laid Plant Mix to Advanced Asphalt Products, LLC 
  • Award Bid No. 1410: Fog & Scrub Seal to Ergon Asphalt & Emulsions 
  • Award Bid No. 1411: Placement of Surface Treatments to Charlie E. Watts, Inc. 
  • Award Bid No. 1412: Micro Surfacing to Whitaker Contracting Corp. 

During the work session, the commission discussed the viability of donating $5,000 to the Liberty Learning Foundation. The nonprofit agency was represented by VP of Regional Development Tricia Bobo who noted that, while the program is free and already available in all Cullman County schools, the organization is running at a $50,000 deficit. Bobo was seeking sponsorship of approximately five schools at the cost of $1,000 each. No decision was made public by the commission. 

The next Cullman County Commission meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 18, in the Cullman County Courthouse Commission Meeting Room. The work session begins at 4 p.m. and the regular meeting at 6.  

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