Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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Overton Commissioners Reject Proposed Travel Policy

Overton County Commissioners voted against County Executive Steven Barlow’s proposed travel policy, expressing concern about both the procedures as well as how it was put together.

Several commissioners expressed concern that Barlow had simply taken a state policy and put a new title sheet on it. Other commissioners claimed they still had not received numbers from mileage that Barlow submitted months ago that was brought for review by the Ethics Committee and Policy Committee. Commissioner Gregg Nivens said the policy needs work.

“It’s got some good stuff in it, Steven, but it’s got to be a complete document,” Nivens said. “I mean, it needs to be finished. Not just a note page stuck on top of a state policy. We need a complete product.”

Barlow said the county has spent thousands of dollars over the past several months trying to get a policy passed. His proposed policy aligns closely with the state’s policy with a few minor tweaks. Barlow said he met with leaders in surrounding counties and went over their policies with them to see what would need to be included in this one.

“We went through the ethics and policy committee,” Barlow said. “You went through my mileage with a fine-tooth comb three or four times. I left the room, let you’ns do it all on your own. Then we came back and we went through it again with me sitting there, with me describing as to what it was.”

He said the policy is largely designed to provide guidelines for reimbursement for mileage, meals, and lodging for employees traveling on county business.

“The vehicle policy that we had, we don’t have the people to enforce vehicle training, making sure every three years that you have this class or that class, we don’t have those departments,” Barlow said.

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