County hires new road department supervisor

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By Brandon Mattingly

A new Washington County road supervisor was named at a regular scheduled fiscal court meeting on Monday morning.

Dale Mann was recommended by Washington County Judge-Executive John Settles to take over the duties effective  Jan. 17. Albert Wimsatt stepped down from the position on Dec. 20 after 26 years of service.
A motion was made by magistrate Billy Riney, Jr. to approve the hiring, which will be contingent upon Mann passing a physical, as well as a state-required test that is to be taken in Elizabethtown.
Magistrate Benjamin Settles made a motion to approve Mann’s salary, which will start at $40,000 and increase by $2,000 on July 1 of this year.

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A Challenger tractor that is used to trim back bushes and small limbs along county roads suffered damage recently, when the engine overheated. Judge Settles said it was determined to be the result of an operator error, therefore not covered in the tractor’s warranty.
Whayne Supply and Caterpillar will cover the labor costs for the repair, but the county will be responsible for replacing the motor. The initial estimate is that the court will have to pay $15,000 to $17,000 to replace the motor.
The court decided to go forward with submitting an application for the Land and Water Conservation Fund grant. The grant would help improve the playground equipment at the Fredericksburg park. Settles said the county has applied for the grant three times previously, and hopes it is successful this time. Magistrate Greg Simms, who filed a motion to submit the application, said the park needs attention.
“It needs to be done,” he said. “There’s one piece (of equipment) they just need to get out of there. The wood is rotting through and there’s exposed metal everywhere. It’s not a good situation.”
All magistrates were in attendance. The next regular scheduled meeting is Jan. 27.