By Lynda Jones
Houston County Fire Marshal and Office of Emergency Management Coordinator David Lamb will retire on Feb. 19. He has held the posts for 18 years.
During the Tuesday, Jan. 12 Houston County Commissioners Court meeting, County Judge Erin Ford made a motion to have two individuals fill the positions rather than just one.
"I've looked at separating the two positions into their respective functions. David's been unique in being able to assume both. Guys like David are scarce. In order fill the emergency management coordinator position, I want to make a motion that we separate these two positions," Ford said.
Precinct 2 Commissioner Willie Kitchen if the two positions "have" to be separated.
Ford responded that the two positions don't have to be separated, but it makes it harder to find an individual that meets the qualifications of fire marshal and EMC. They're not very common, and the real need at this point is a replacement EMC."
He continued, "I talked to the City of Crockett, and they're willing to assume any responsibility on fire investigations by Jason Frizzell, so we're covered on the fire marshal." Frizzell is fire marshal for the Crockett Fire Department.
Ford repeated his motion three times and it failed for lack of a second.
Precinct 1 Commissioner Roger Dickey then said, "Judge, .... I would still like to keep the jobs together. I don't want to restrict our movement forward..."
Ford said, "You're restricting the ability to get an individual for this county. Now the motion's been closed ... it's a closed issue."
In other business, the court unanimously voted to include the Community Supervision and Correction Department as county-owned buildings with courtroom or offices utilized by the courts for inclusion of the buildings where firearms are prohibited.
They also voted to adopt the Firearm Policy Section for the Employee Handbook and a related change to the Discipline Section as recommended by the Human Resources Committee.