Wayne County, Mississippi

Newswire

Elected Offices

ELECTED COUNTY OFFICIALS

Board of Supervisors

District 1 - David Mills

District 2 - Joe Dyess

District 3 - Jerry Hutto

District 4 - Tommy Roberts

District 5 - Gaston Hutcherson

Board Attorney - Cooper Leggett

Address: 609 Azalea Drive, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Telephone: 601-735-3414; 601-735-3662

Fax: 601-735-6248

Elected positions from each of the county's five districts, the boundaries of which are based on the federal decennial Census. Supervisors shall have the power to adopt, modify, alter or repeal orders, resolutions and ordinances in their respective county and district not inconsistent with the law. In general, Supervisors have jurisdiction over roads, ferries, bridges, tax levies, courthouses, jails, county-owned real property, apportionment of funds, contractural powers as well as other powers expressly authorized by law.

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Chancery Clerk

Geary Jackson

Address: 609 Azalea Drive, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Office: 601-735-2873

Fax: 601-735-6224

Elected position to serve as clerk of Board of Supervisors and clerk of Chancery Court, and to maintain the records of both offices. This office also deals with estates, guardianships, divorces, child custody cases, adoptions, property disputes and other matters of equity.

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Chancery Court Judge (19th District -- Wayne and Jones counties) 

The Honorable Franklin C. McKenzie Jr.

P.O. Box 1961, Laurel, MS 39441

Office 601-428-7625

Fax 601-428-3119

Chancery Courts have jurisdiction over disputes in matters involving equity; domestic matters including adoptions, custody disputes and divorces; guardianships; sanity hearings; wills; and challenges to constitutionality of state laws. Land records are filed in Chancery Court. The Chancery Courts’ jurisdiction over equity matters involving less than $200,000 is concurrent with county courts. Chancery Courts have jurisdiction over juvenile matters in counties which have no County Court. The chancellor may appoint a lawyer in private practice to sit as a youth court referee to hear juvenile matters such as delinquency, abuse and neglect. Trials are typically heard by a chancellor without a jury, although state law allows parties to request a jury in Chancery Court. Chancery Court judges are selected in non-partisan elections to serve four-year terms.

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Circuit Clerk

Rose Bingham

Address: 609 Azalea Drive, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Office: 601-735-1171

Fax: 601-735-6261

Elected position to serve as chief officer of County and Circuit Courts and chief elections officer for county. The Circuit Clerk maintains voter rolls, assists Election Commissioners in purging the voter rolls and assists election officials in conducting primary and general elections. The office also receives and files all lawsuits, indictments, motions and other related papers in all civil and criminal cases filed in County or Circuit Courts.

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Circuit Court Judges (10th Circuit -- Wayne, Clarke, Lauderdale and Kemper counties)

The Honorable Lester F. Williamson Jr.

Address: P.O. Box 86, Meridian, MS 39302

Office: 601-482-9741

Fax: 601-486-4933

The Honorable Justin M. Cobb

Address: P.O. Box 5631, Meridian, MS 39302

Office: 601-482-9741

Fax: 601-486-4933

Mississippi’s circuit courts have original jurisdiction over all civil and criminal matters not vested exclusively in another court. Circuit Courts also hear appeals from County, Justice and Municipal courts and from administrative boards and commissions such as the Workers’ Compensation Commission and the Mississippi Department of Employment Security. Circuit Court judges are selected in non-partisan elections to serve four-year terms. Most circuit court trials are heard with a 12-member jury and usually one or two alternate jurors. A judge may preside without a jury if the dispute is a question of law rather than fact. Circuit judges have the power to issue extraordinary writs.

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Constables

Scott Frost -- District 1

Jamie Beard -- District 2

Address: 810 Chickasawhay Street, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Office: 601-735-3118

Fax: 601-735-6266

Elected officials that keep and preserve the peace within his/her county by aiding and assisting in executing the criminal laws of the state for the Justice Court of Wayne County. Constables shall obey all lawful orders and execute all judgements for Justice Court within the district he/she represents.

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Coroner

David L. Pugh

Telephone: 601-735-4612

Fax 601-735-6547

195 Oakwood Place, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Elected official that serves as the chief medical examiner and/or medical examiner-investigator. This official is responsible for issuing declarations of death and performing or reporting results of autopsies in cases requiring such action.

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County Prosecutor

Curtis Bates

Office: 601-735-7006

Fax: 601-735-0730

810-C Station Street, Waynesboro, MS 39367
Elected official that represents the state in all investigations of felonies in Justice Court and County Court, and in all criminal cases appealed to the Circuit Court from County Court. The county prosecutor may assist the district attorney, and may present matters to the county grand jury and in some youth court proceedings.

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District Attorney

E. J. "Bilbo" Mitchell

P.O. Box 5172, Meridian, MS 39302

Office: 601-482-9759

Fax: 601-483-0085

Elected official that serves as state’s lead prosecutor in cases involving Circuit Court.

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Election Commission

District 1 -- Evon Harris, 1950 Buckatunna-Chicora-Clara Road, Buckatunna, MS 39322

District 2 -- Sybil Taylor, 914 Jordan-Sumrall Road, Buckatunna, MS 39322

District 3 -- Kathy Marie Odom, 138 Matherville-Frost Bridge Road, Waynesboro, MS 39367

District 4 -- Rachel Chancellor, 1105 Strengthford-Cooley Road, Waynesboro, MS 39367

District 5 -- Imogene Walley, 484 Big Creek Road, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Office: 601-735-1171

Fax: 601-735-6261

609 Azalea Drive, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Elected positions whose general duties include conducting non-partisan elections, certifying election results and purging voter rolls. Seats are elected from single-member voting districts within the county.

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Justice Court

Judge Charles Chapman

Judge Steve Walker

Justice Court Clerk -- Kristy Palmer James

Office: 601-735-3118

Fax: 601-735-6266

810 Chickasawhay Street, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Elected position to serve as judge in civil and criminal jurisdictions of all actions where the principal of the debt, amount of demandor value of the property sought to be recovered shall not exceed $3,500. The Justice Court Clerk, an appointed position, shall file and record actions and pleadings, acknowledge affidavits, issue warrants in criminal cases, certify and issue copies of records, documents and pleadings in Justice Court, collect any fines or costs required by the Justice Court, and issues all processes necessary for the operation of the court.

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Sheriff

Jody Ashley

Office: 601-735-3801

Fax: 601-735-6262

613 Court Street, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Elected position to serve as chief law enforcement officer of the county as well as chief officer of the Chancery and Circuit Courts and maintains the county law library. The Sheriff is in charge of the county courthouse, jail and protection of prisoners. Administrative duties include serving as the county's jailor and maintaining records for the Mississippi Department of Corrections as well as a true and accurate jail docket.

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Tax Assessor-Collector

Debbie Richards

Office: 601-735-3381

Fax: 601-735-6272

609 Azalea Drive, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Elected position to maintain the personal, real and ad valorem tax rolls of the county. The Tax Assessor-Collector is also responsible for keeping the records of tax payments and depositing the money in the county treasury. The office annually locates, classifies and assesses all taxable property, and is responsible for setting fair, uniform and accurate values for each parcel of real and personal property.

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Superintendent of Education

Bobby Jones

Office: 601-735-4871

Fax: 601-735-4872

810 Chickasawhay Street, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Elected position to serve as executive secretary of the county’s board of education, but has no vote in proceedings before the board and no voice in fixing its policies. The Superintendent is the director of all public schools inside the county.Wayne County’s Board of Education has five seats, based on similar districts established for the Board of Supervisors (see Board of Education listings below).

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Board of Education

Amy Brown -- District 1 representative

Wilma Taylor -- District 2 representative

George Alsworth -- District 3 representative (Board President)

Al Smith -- District 4 representative

Robert Dean -- District 5 representative

Marcus Evans -- School Board attorney

Office: 601-735-4871

Fax: 601-735-4872

810 Chickasawhay Street, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Elected position to serve county's five representative districts in oversight of all public schools. Unlike the Board of Supervisors, Board of Education members are chosen on a staggered basis -- meaning only one or two positions on the panel will be elected at any one time in various years. The Board of Education is solely responsible for the operational and budgetary oversight of the school district, while the elected Superintendent of Education sees to the day-to-day operations of the system.

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NON-ELECTED COUNTY OFFICIALS

Board of Supervisors Attorney

Cooper Leggett

Office: 601-735-4920

Fax: 601-735-3859

P.O. Box 384, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Non-elected position to represent five-member board by appointment.

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Economic Development

Sean Dunlap, Executive Director

Office: 601-735-6056

Fax: 601-735-6246

610 Azalea Drive, Waynesboro, MS 39367

Non-elected position responsible for marketing Wayne County to new and existing businesses and industries regionally, nationally and internationally. The Wayne County Economic Development District, comprised of nine appointed board members, oversees the county's two industrial parks and county-owned facilities occupied by businesses that lease such buildings for their operations.

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Homeland Security-Emergency Management Agency

Angela Atchison, Director

Office: 601-735-2184

Non-elected position responsible for overseeing Wayne County's preparedness for natural and man-made disasters in terms of pre-planning and mitigation. The director serves as a liasion between county government and the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The Wayne County Homeland Security-Emergency Management Agency also has responsibilities over the county's 9-1-1 communication system.

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Veterans Affairs 

Pam Cleary, Director

Office: 601-735-4258

Non-elected position responsible for overseeing issues related to the United States Veterans Administration -- including health care and benefits -- involving Wayne County residents.

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Wayne County Extension Service

Lanette Crocker, Director

Office 601-735-2243; Fax 601-735-6264

The Wayne County Extension Service provides educational outreach to the citizens of Wayne County on behalf of Mississippi State University (a land-grant institution). Programs focus on a variety of topics ranging from food preparation and storage to eating healthy and growing vegetables.The Extension Service oversees the area's 4-H program for youth.