Budget battle shuts down Phillips County - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Janice Broach

Budget battle shuts down Phillips County

It is not the way most people would want to ring in the New Year.  The Phillips County office will not reopen on Wednesday after the New Year's holiday because the county cannot pass a budget.

Regina Boards works in the Phillips County Courthouse.  She relies on her paycheck.

"My bills and my grandchildren, I'm rearing. We all depend on the paycheck. So I'm very concerned about it. I hope justices do something soon," Boards said.

Don Gentry is the Phillips County Judge. His job is very similar to that of a county Mayor.  He said he didn't want the county government to shut down, but the Phillips County Quorum Court members could not agree to pass his budget.

Gentry said the shutdown means road improvements will stop.

It means the courthouse will be shutdown.

That means the circuit court and assessor office will be closed. No lawsuits can be filed and no marriage licenses issued.

The Sheriff's department and the county jail will continue to operate.

This isn't the first time this has happened in Phillips County. In 1999 the county shutdown for 6 days for the same reason.

"It's very embarrassing. We have families and very few jobs here so it is," resident Obadiah Jackson said.

The Phillips County Judge told  the Quorum court they could hold a meeting to vote on the budget on any day they choose.

The next regularly scheduled meeting is January 8th.

Click here to e-mail Janice Broach.


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