Hopkins County Commissioners’ Court unanimously voted to purchase new voting equipment for the county clerk’s office. The new equipment will be ready for early voting in the March Primary, according to County Clerk Debbie Shirley.
Last Monday, Commissioners had tabled the purchase of the technologically advanced voting equipment but following a budget work session that day, put the item on a special meeting agenda for Friday. Danny Evans moved to take the item off the table Friday and Wade Bartley seconded the motion. The equipment will cost $436,545, which is a price less than previously quoted prices. The purchase agreement and price was approved by the Texas Secretary of State, who has to approve all voting equipment purchases in the state, prior to the Monday meeting. By paying for the equipment at time of purchase, an additional savings of interest on payments of $93,000 was available to the county.
The purchase will also secure the machines programmed for the March Primary and other elections that will follow plus onsite support for the machines during the elections. Wade Bartley moved to purchase the equipment and Mike O’Dell seconded the motion.
Following the special session Friday Commissioners met in a budget work session to discuss the construction of a courtroom annex adjacent to the New Hopkins County Jail. The courtroom annex was on the Monday, January 8th regular session agenda but commissioners tabled that item as well. The courthouse annex would be a 100 seat courtroom attached to the county jail to facilitate inmate transfer to and from the jail without having to use transportation to the current county courthouse.