RUSK — During their regularly scheduled meeting Monday, the Cherokee County Commissioners Court officially accepted Pct. 4 Justice of the Peace Bobby Caveness’ resignation, effective 5 p.m., Friday.

Caveness has served in that position for 25 years and three months, and in his resignation letter given to County Judge Chris Davis, Caveness said it was in the “best interest” of the county.

“It has been very enjoyable,” Caveness stated in the letter. Caveness also thanked the people of Precinct 4.

Pct. 3 Commissioner Moody Glass said if Caveness feels like he could not “give 100 percent” (to his job), he should resign.

“I regrettably accept his resignation,” Glass added.

Pct. 4 Commissioner Billy McCutcheon made the motion to accept the resignation; Davis seconded it.

“I enjoyed working with him (Caveness)...I hate to see him go,” Davis said.

The court then appointed Harry Tilley to become interim Pct. 4 justice of the peace, after Pct. 4 JP Clerk Vera Foreman, who was present, rejected the offer from the court.

Foreman, a Democrat, is running against Republican Steven Looney for Pct. 4 JP in the November elections.

“I can’t accept (the position),” Foreman said before the court. “It wouldn’t be fair to my opponent. I want to run a clean race.”

Tilley, who is a retired judge and has helped in court previously, will be sworn in later this week at an unknown time, according to Davis.

In other business, the court also heard from Official Payments Corporation and approved a resolution to process credit card payments for such items as court fees, taxes and citations, via Internet or telephone. According to OPO officials, this will cost the county nothing, however a small fee will be charged to the public toward the amount due. Officials did not know how much the exact fee would be at this time.

The court also approved the following:

• an order to increase from $150 to $175 the amount providing for the disposition of a pauper’s remains by donation, cremation or burial pursuant to the Health and Safety Code Section 694.002;

• County Extension Agent and County Marshal Jack White to attend a seminar on Wildland Fire Origin and Cause on April 17-21;

• Marsha Stone of the Health Unit to attend the Texas Pandemic Influenza Summit in Austin, March 27;

• Health Unit employees Marcia Morgan, Irumimba Brown, Elisa Rangel and Maria Guillen to attend a Birth Control Update conference in Dallas, March 31;

• Health Unit employees Mary Mitchell, Terri Duhon and Irene Mendez to attend a Communicating with Adolescents about HIV and AIDS conference in Fort Worth, April 6;

• Veterans Officer Jim Foreman to attend the Texas Veterans Commission’s 2006 spring conference for veterans service officers in Tyler, April 4-6; and

• Pct. 3 Constable Edward Lee to attend a seminar in Huntsville, June 5-9.

The agenda item of Maddox Air Conditioning, Inc. to make repairs to the county courthouse’s air/heating system was passed to a future meeting.

The court also went into executive session to seek advice on legal matters. No action was taken afterwards.

The Cherokee County Commissioners Court regularly meets each second and fourth Monday of the month at 10 a.m. at the county courthouse. Each meeting is open to the public and includes time for citizen input.

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