Supes to crackdown on vehicle use
by Rory Doyle
Apr 02, 2013 | 2679 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The issue of personal usage of county vehicles became a hot topic at Monday's Bolivar County Board of Supervisors meeting in Rosedale.

President Andrew Williams said accusations have been made of county officials using vehicles for personal or family reasons, rather than county business.

Williams heard that someone has been photographing violations in public settings and he wanted the board to stay mindful of the established policy banning personal use.

Williams, however, did not cite which departments were involved but said the behavior needs to stop immediately.

The discussion stemmed from a prior conversation about verifying driver licenses and insurance policies for county workers operating vehicles.

Department heads will soon be running thorough checks to verify that all licenses are sufficient.

"Nobody should be driving a county vehicle unless they work for a county department," said Williams. "And no one should be a passenger in a county vehicle unless they are strictly on county business.

Additionally, ride-alongs are against county policies.

"This also means county workers shouldn't be dropping kids off at school or driving around on their day off."

Williams added that no one should be driving the vehicles when they are off duty and department heads will be reminding all employees of these stipulations.

District 3 Supervisor Preston Billings asked the board and public to remember that officials appear in public places and businesses but are there for everyday needs — like using a restroom or getting a part for the vehicle.

"Don't take a picture of me coming out of Wal-Mart or AutoZone or O'Reilly," said Billings. "I'm doing work all over the county."

District 2 Supervisor Donny Whitten said this policy is nothing new and it has come up with some employees in the past.

"This has been abused in the past and it's been addressed in the past," said Whitten. "This policy applies to every department in this county.”

Bolivar County Sheriff Kelvin Williams said he was aware of the matter when he first took office in 2012 and has made sure to crack down on the issue consistently.

District 5 Supervisor Larry King asked if there was easy access to these policies and other policies related to county employees.

County Administrator Will Hooker said many were in the employee handbook and President Williams said they would consider posting all of them on the website —www.co.bolivar.ms.us.