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Fireworks will light up Navarro County skies March 2 in celebration of Texas Independence Day after Commissioners approved a resolution Feb. 10 allowing the sale of fireworks for the occasion.

Permitted retailers may sell fireworks throughout the county from Tuesday, Feb. 25 until midnight Monday, March 2.

The county's burn ban remains lifted, however Commissioners urged caution when burning or setting off fireworks.

The sale of fireworks will end if a burn ban is put into effect before March 2.

Commissioners approved a request from Audubon Metals LLC. Corsicana City Manager Connie Standridge spoke to the group regarding the request.

“As you know, we've recently announced the construction of a new facility to house the operations of Audubon Metals Texas LLC,” Standridge said, asking the court to approve a standard tax abatement of 50% for 10 years.

Corsicana announced the new manufacturing facility, to be located in the Highway 31 Industrial Park, in January. The project represents a $50 million capital investment, as well as the creation of 100 jobs.

“We certainly are glad you're here investing in Corsicana and Navarro County,” said County Judge H.M. Davenport.

Similar incentives and abatements have already been approved by the City of Corsicana. Mayor Don Denbow was in attendance, along with two representatives of Audubon Metals LLC, President Brian Hawkes and Vice President of Business Development Jimmy Garren, to provide support for the project.

“Thank you for bringing your company here,” said James Olsen, Commissioner Pct. 4. “Thank you for choosing us.”

The tax collection report for January was accepted as presented by Tax Assessor-Collector Mike Dowd.

January 2020 collections were reported at $10,941,349.15, ahead of last year's $8,278,182.37. So far, the county has collected $19,624,367.29.

Dowd also reported the receipt of $8,678.19 from the City of Kerens Housing Authority in lieu of taxes, which was accepted by the court.

Unanimous approval was granted for Eddie Moore, Commissioner Pct. 3, to purchase a new backhoe from RDO Equipment.

“We've been looking to upgrade our fleet of worn out equipment,” said Moore. “I've searched all over and found this backhoe, and it's low enough that I can write a check for it so we don't have to finance it.”

Jason Grant, Commissioner Pct. 1, received approval to post the closing of two tenths of a mile of NE CR 1036 in his precinct.

According to Grant, the short road dead ends at an abandoned property, which is being entered and vandalized. Neighbors have been consulted, and with the court's approval, a sign will be posted to solicit further opinions on the proposed closure.

The court approved a resolution for application for the Victim Assistance Grant for the District Attorney's Office.

During budget planning, the court asked that the county's Victims' Assistance Coordinator to apply for the grant, which if received, would take effect Oct. 1 for next year's funds.

In other business, a software service agreement with Tyler Technologies was approved for the County Clerk's Office.

The court met in executive session to discuss personnel matters relating to the county's Extension Office and IT Department.

Following closed session, Commissioners voted unanimously to compensate the Extension Office's Kari Davis for handling two employee positions' duties as office manager, an adjustment that was previously overlooked during the last budget season.

Also approved was the temporary adjustment of the salaries of two IT Department employees until next budget session to reflect increase in responsibilities due to the current IT Director's retirement, and in lieu of hiring a replacement at this time.

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