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Commission talks holidays, budget

Dallas County employers will have two additional days to celebrate the Fourth of July next week.

At its 25-minute Commission meeting Monday, the Dallas County Commissioners voted to close its offices from July 4 to July 6 for the holiday. The holiday falls on a Wednesday and county employees get the rest of the week off.

Dallas County Commission chairman and Probate Judge Kim Ballard, Larry Nickles and Curtis Williams all voted for the extended holiday. Valerie Reubin and Roy Moore opposed.

“As a Commission, we’ve bent over backwards for the holidays,” Moore said.

Williams sees the extra days as a reward to the county employees.

“It’s a way to let the workers know we appreciate their hard work,” Williams said. “They’re dedicated and work from sunrise to sunset.”

The other big topic news from the meeting was the Dallas County’s budget for the upcoming fiscal year. Last year, the Commission passed a $23.1 million budget. Two years ago, the County’s budget was $22.8 million.

“We hope to have enough for the budget,” Nickles said. “There’s a lot of needs in the county. We’ve got to make improvements. We need to fix the roads and the Sherriff’s department need more personnel and equipment.”

Ballard expects the County to make budget, and said it could surpass last year’s amount.

“We’ve done it before,” Ballard said.

The 2018-19 budget will be completed in September and the Fiscal year begins Oct. 1.

The five-member Commission presented Jennifer Reese with a retirement plaque. Reese, 60, has worked the last 10 years as program director at the Juvenile Detention Center.

“It feels great to get recognized by the Commission,” Reese said.

Added Ballard: “I’ve never heard a bad word about Mrs. Reese.”

The next County Commission meeting will be July 9 at 4 p.m. in the County Courthouse.