By Ray King

The Jefferson County Quorum Court has voted to impose a hiring freeze that will last through the end of next year.

Previous county judges have imposed hiring freezes in the past but current County Judge Gerald Robinson said they were ignored.

The ordinance makes exceptions for chief administrators of the district and circuit courts, commissioned law enforcement officers, custody and corrections officers in the sheriff’s office, juvenile intake, probation and correctional officer positions at the Jack Jones Juvenile Center, positions funded entirely by one or more grants, and temporary positions supporting in the elections division.

All vacant positions in the county are also subject to the hiring freeze and the ordinance provides that the Quorum Court may exempt one of more positions if they determine that the position is necessary for a critical health or safety function, to satisfy a legal mandate or substantially funded by a state or federal grant or other dedicated revenue source.

Robinson explained that he decided on the hiring freeze after visiting counties similar in size and population to Jefferson County.