Erath County Commissioners approved dissolving the county's affiliation with The Transit System, Inc. and approved a resolution to join the Central Texas Rural Transit District also referred to as CARR (City and Rural Rides) Tuesday morning. The new company is based in Coleman.

The new service for Erath County will officially begin today. Erath County Judge Tab Thompson asked citizens for patience during the phase-in of the new system.

We're trying hard to make it a seamless, comfortable transition, Thompson said.

General Manager J.R. Salazar said five employees from Erath County have already been hired, which should make the transition smoother because they already know the county and the patrons.

We're happy to be here, Salazar said. And we're prepared to get it up and running.

Mary Hopson with TxDOT reported to the court that five vehicles in all will be transferred to the new company with two new 2008 sedans coming from Bruner Motors. She said Austin authorities will be able to determine the exact amount of funds to be transferred by the end of November.

We'll make sure Austin does a fair job of splitting those funds, Hopson said.

Precinct 2 Commissioner Lynn Tidwell sought permission to donate a historical banister bridge in Highland to the Dublin Historical Museum.

Tidwell said the bridge was taken out about 20 years ago, and has just been sitting, and needs to be removed from the landowner's property. The bridge has a metal plaque with the names of the county judge and commissioners of the time.

Commissioners' approved the donation.

That's going to be a neat deal, Thompson said. It's a real nice piece of history for everybody to enjoy. I'm just tickled the group is willing to do that.

Three new vehicles are needed instead of the two that were previously budgeted. Apparently, one vehicle was wrecked and commissioners gave permission for that office to purchase vehicles from Buy Board.

Meanwhile, permission was also given for the county to buy a new panic alarm system to replace the aging system in place now. Repair and replacement parts can no longer be obtained because the system is 11 years old.

In other business commissioners,

Approved statements from the City of Dublin for fire and ambulance protection pursuant to agreement

Approved reappointing Jennifer Carey to Erath County Appraisal District Board of Directors

Approved Constable in Precinct 1 to purchase a radio

Approved new fee schedule for funeral home service

Approved maintainer purchase for Precinct 1

Approved request to purchase tractor for Precinct 3

Approved 36-inch pipeline crossing County Road 156

Approved the Maintenance Barn's request to purchase new truck from Buy Board

Approved task force on Indigent Defense Grant Program Resolution, and

Approved release of maintenance bond for Hill Valley Subdivision.

ANGELIA JOINER is a staff writer for the Empire-Tribune. She can be reached at or 254-965-3124, ext. 238.