“I don't know what I'm going to do,” said commissioner Helen Hesson. “I'm close to four of these people, and kin to one of them, so how in the world do I choose?” she asked.
“That's why you're ‘paid the big bucks',” answered County Mayor Shelvy Linville, which brought chuckles and a guffaw or two from the commissioners, who are paid very modestly for their public service.
Commissioner Billy Bransford echoed Ms. Hesson's remarks, saying that at least 10 of the 13 candidates were “over-qualified” for the position. Nevertheless, on a first vote that narrowed the field to three (Mickey Chambers with three votes; Mike Scott with 10 votes; and Jerry Scurlock with 7 votes), and then a final vote between Scott and Scurlock, which resulted in 13 votes for George M. “Mike” Scott and seven votes for Jerry Scurlock, Scott, a retired USAF Master Sgt. with 22 years active service, was chosen to replace Forrest Bullington, who announced his retirement due to health issues last month.
Mike Scott is a 1982 MCHS graduate who joined the Air Force after graduation, was deployed overseas multiple times in Operations Desert Shield, Operation Desert Storm, and Operation Southern Watch.
From 2001 until his retirement in May, 2006, MSgt. Scott served as First Sgt. for the 332nd Air Force Recruiting Squadron in Nashville, responsible for the health, morale, welfare and discipline of 114 Air Force personnel scattered across an eight state region.
Scott is married to the former Kimberly Hesson of Lafayette. They have one son, Cory.
An Assistant Judical Commissioner was also chosen Monday night by the county commissioners. By a vote of 11-9 retired LPD Lt. Ronnie Krantz was chosen over Circuit Court Clerk assistant April Hix-Beech. A third candidate, corrections officer David Gunter Sr., was eliminated in the first round of voting.
Steve Jones, who retired as county EMS Director last year after 33 years of service, was presented with a framed resolution honoring him for his dedication and service to the county.
In other business the commissioners approved a number of budget amendments, accepted a $27,500 bid to re-roof the UCHRA building, and approved five persons for election as Notaries Public: Kathy R. Carter; Irma Roas Venegas; Melissa M. Chandler; Jerry W. Qualls; and Leigh Dallas.
The County Commission will meet again on the first Monday next month, March 5 in the upstairs courtroom in Lafayette at 6 p.m.