Caresse Jackman

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Beat Unit Costs

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NOXUBEE COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI)-Starting October 1st, Noxubee County will to go back to the beat system.

Last year, county residents voted to do away with the current unit system.

In a unit system, there is only one centralized road manager who develops an annual plan for road projects in the county. In a beat system, an individual supervisor decides how and when road work is done within their district.

District 4 Supervisor Eddie Colman voted for the beat system in 2011 and is happy to see it return.

“We were paying a road manager and two shop people all this time and we don’t have to have all that work. We can spend that money on gravel and paving roads or dump trucks. We don’t have to have all that overhead to spend, ” says Coleman.

Other supervisors in the county dread having the base system come back. District 5 Supervisor Bruce Brooks believes Noxubee County taxpayers will feel the brunt of the system switch.

“The beat system is going to cost the county more money. We got less equipment to work with. So it’s going to hurt the people eventually in the years to come. We’re going to see the county go back down in the hole,” says Brooks.

The county supervisors will have to look at the budget to determine exactly how much the switch to a beat system will actually cost. The switch could mean more staff in each of the county road barns. It also could require more equipment.

County officials first voted on switching from beat to unit back in 2008 and it has been hotly debated ever since.