County Commission gets update on POW-MIA memorial, considers pay raise for road and bridge department

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Charlie Guthrie and Frank Walker met with the Saline County Commission Wednesday, Dec. 12, to provide an update on the proposed prisoners-of-war/missing-in-action service members memorial slated to be placed on the courthouse lawn next year.

Guthrie said members of the memorial group met recently with representatives of other veterans organizations to clear up concerns about the use of the POW-MIA emblem in the monument's design.

The logo commonly used to recognize POW-MIA commemorations was created in 1970 and has long been used by the National League of Families, an organization originally devoted to finding and recovering men and women who served in the Vietnam War.

Over time, the image has come to be recognized as representing the commemoration of POW-MIA service men and women from all wars and conflicts, Guthrie said. He said concerns about using the logo seem to have been addressed to everyone's satisfaction.

He noted that all veterans' organizations in the county have been contacted about the project.

The planning group has raised about $1,800 so far. The goal is to raised about $3,500 to $4,000 for the monument. Any funds remaining after the monument has been built will be kept in a maintenance fund that can be used for any veterans' monument at the courthouse, he said.

The group also is still seeking the names of any POW or MIA service men and women from the county. They hope to have all names submitted by Jan. 1.

To contribute to the fund or submit a name, contact any member of the planning group: Frank Walker, 660-886-2195; Dennis Desmond, 660-886-5258; Richard Clemens, 660-886-8829; Bob Kurth, 660-674-2675; Jim Heard, 660-529-3636; Mike Rogers, 660-529-3387; or Guthrie, 660-529-2420.

In other business Wednesday, Saline County Road and Bridge Supervisor Justin Cowart submitted a request to the county commission Wednesday, Dec. 12, to increase wages in his department by 78 cents per hour.

Commissioners accepted the request but tabled it until Thursday's meeting.

Cowart said his department has been operating short two positions since early July. He plans to pay for the $14,601 in additional payroll costs by filling only one of those positions.

"I believe we can manage with one less employee," he said.

Savings above that amount would go back into the road and bridge department budget, he said.

It's been two years since Cowart and the department assistant received a raise and five years since the operators have gotten a raise, he said.

In other business, Northern District Commissioner Norvelle "Brownie" Brown announced plans to meet with Pettis County commissioners to review road maintenance agreements.

He said the relatively new Pettis County officials want to make sure they understand each county's obligations.

Brown said the roads in question are near the county line. He said the arrangement has been in effect for a number of years and has worked well. He doesn't anticipate any change in maintenance responsibilities.

Related story:
POW-MIA memorial to soon honor servicemen


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  • The department manager and his assistant got raises 2 years ago and 5 years for the operators to get a raise... wow at least the supervisors got their raises sooner... No excuse for this!

    -- Posted by Gumby on Thu, Dec 13, 2012, at 9:31 PM
  • Gumby if I read it right not only did they get thier raises two years ago they will also get the 78 cent an hour also this time. It is like everything else the people doing the work get the lest reward.

    -- Posted by semperfi on Thu, Dec 13, 2012, at 11:07 PM
  • Please Ed! Well deserved for ALL!

    -- Posted by willie makit on Fri, Dec 14, 2012, at 10:25 AM
  • You guys must have the inside scoop???

    -- Posted by bakerman on Sat, Dec 15, 2012, at 4:04 PM
  • No inside scoop, it was all in the article.

    -- Posted by nancy007 on Sat, Dec 15, 2012, at 4:10 PM
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