During Monday’s meeting of the Erath County Commissioners Court, the court approved election contracts for the May 10 election, accepted a bid for multimedia electronics and approved the renewal of the county’s incident management system.

Erath County clerk Gwinda Jones said the city of Stephenville, the Stephenville Independent School District and the Middle Trinity Groundwater Conservation District have returned contracts for the upcoming election. Jones also said the Dublin Independent School District had received a contract but it had not yet been returned.

Meanwhile, Stephenville’s own Gifford TV & Electronics won the bid to deliver multimedia equipment to the courtroom of District Judge Don Jones. The equipment will allow prosecutors and defense attorneys to present evidence in their cases before the court without the need to bring in equipment and waste time with set up and will allow the judge, jury, prosecution and defense to easily view the elements of the case.

Gifford returned the lowest of several bids while meeting the specifications of the bid request. For a total cost of $11,100, Gifford will install a projector system, projection screen, document imager, DVD player, VCR, and two 42-inch LCD televisions.

The package also includes a custom built lectern to house the equipment, all the necessary components and installation.

The court accepted the bid and a comment was made that it was easy to give the job to the company offering the best cost and friendly, hometown service.

Finally, the commissioners issued a unanimous vote of approval to adopt the National Incident Management System (NIMS) as the county’s standard for incident management.

John Wooley, emergency management coordinator for the county, explained that the county has participated in the system for a number of years and renews the agreement on an annual basis.

“The North Central Texas Council of Governments requires that we update and refresh our records,” Wooley said. “Participation in NIMS qualifies the county for federal grants.”

According to the Web site for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, www.fema.gov, NIMS was developed so responders from different jurisdictions and disciplines can work together better to respond to natural disasters and emergencies, including acts of terrorism. NIMS benefits include a unified approach to incident management; standard command and management structures; and emphasis on preparedness, mutual aid and resource management.