DeSoto County’s regulators are in the early stages of setting their budget for the upcoming fiscal year.
On Monday, during their regular meeting, the overseers spent time hearing representatives from organizations that the county typically supports within their budget.
The board did not make any decisions on Monday. Monday’s agenda items were carried out to inform superiors about the organizations.
While on the board, Rob Long, curator of the DeSoto County Museum, explained what the museum does for the county. Long said the museum has brochures for all cities. He added that the museum has a mobile exhibit it is working on to reach out to the county councils.
The DeSoto County Museum regularly welcomes visitors who stop at the Hernando site to learn more about the county’s history. In fact, Long discovered that someone from Ecuador stopped by the museum two weeks ago.
Lori Barnes acted as the new director for the first regional library system. Barnes began the library system on July 1 from the Jackson-George Library System in southern Mississippi.
She served on the board of the Mississippi Library Association and was appointed to the board of the Mississippi Library Commission by former Governor Phil Bryant.
Barnes said the libraries in the FRL system have now returned to pre-COVID hours and some of the libraries, including the Hernando location, are now open longer than before.
Barnes told regulators that they are calling for $ 1.395 million in funding as they plan to provide full programming this fall.
The Executive Director of the House of Grace Women’s and Children’s Home, Sarita Drake, shared her own story as a victim of domestic violence and how the House of Grace benefited her. Earlier this year, Drake became the new leader of the House of Grace.
“Our goal is to keep women safe while they explore their options,” said Drake. âMany times they are at it for so long that it becomes normal. We offer them a safe place where they can decide for themselves what they want to do, help them to become survivors and to have their own voice. “
The House of Grace has a thrift shop near its office in Southaven and Drake talked about the best sellers in the shop, the fine clothes and wooden furniture that are out there. She added that donations are welcome and that volunteers will come and collect donated furniture for the store.
Executive Director Sally Williams and board member Mary Lee Brown of the Healing Hearts Child Advocacy Center (CAC) told supervisors they helped more than 8,000 families in the past year. The organization, which provides services to victims of child abuse and their families, increased its services to more than 750 forensic interviews, more than 700 mental health sessions, over 440 reviews, over 80 law enforcement agencies, and more than 400 law enforcement findings for child abuse over the past year.
The center is calling for $ 15,000 in exchange for what is provided by Tate County, Healing Hearts’ other area service, which also receives separate funding from Olive Branch, Southaven, Hernando, and Senatobia. The CAC is funded primarily through federal grants and fundraisers throughout the year, including a new Christmas tree sale during the Christmas season in Silo Square in Southaven.
The other agency presented to the board on Monday was Arc Northwest Mississippi, represented by Executive Director Rebecca Treadway and Austin Allmon, who benefits from, participates and sits on the board of directors.
“Before I found the Arc, I felt like I was in high school just a few people like me,” Allmon told the board. âNow I know a lot of people like me. The bow helps me a lot. She (Treadway) helped me get jobs. “
Treadway reminded the board of the Arc’s upcoming fundraiser, Boots and BBQ. The gala is scheduled for August 28th at 7pm at the Landers Center in Southaven. Tickets now sell for $ 50 per person.
The DeSoto Arts Council was also due to appear at Monday’s meeting, but no Arts Council representative appeared to be speaking.
Managers are expected to begin reviewing the budget in meetings scheduled for next Monday, August 9th at 1pm and August 23rd at 8am