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County Continues to Work on Settlement Offer

Last week we reported that Coffee County commissioners voted to make a settlement offer to a former employee who said she was wrongfully terminated from her job in 2010. Melinda Keeling took the county to court over losing her job, and now a financial settlement is in the works.
Last week county commissioners voted to approve a settlement with Keeling for nearly $1 million.
Here is a way the county is looking at to pay Keeling. Members of the Coffee County Budget and Finance Committee opted to fund roughly half the amount owed by using $447,878 from the county’s unassigned fund balance and $114,622 from the State Unclaimed Property Refund.
The unassigned fund balance is the money that’s set aside for emergencies, sometimes called the rainy-day fund.
The remaining cost will be paid by using $300,000 that was set aside for the case last fiscal year to prepare for the costs associated with this case.
The county’s insurance carrier will cover $120,000, which is more than county officials initially expected the coverage to pay.
The funds coming from the State Unclaimed Property Refund, $114,622, previously couldn’t be spent by the county, but a new law allows it.
We will keep you updated as this story as it progresses.