In the light of the shooting tragedy at Rush Hospital on Sunday, Lauderdale County supervisors discussed courthouse security and possibly installing a metal detector at the annex building, where the board has its offices.
Supervisor Ray Boswell said the county would have to hire two new employees to man the entrance and attempted to blunt the issue with a question.
"Are you guys scared to come to your office, with all that means to the people, to the taxpayers?" asked Boswell, who represents District 5.
"Now you and I have been sitting on a committee, Ray, where justice court came to us and asked us for some security," said District 2 supervisor Jimmie Smith. "I don't think any board member is scared to come up here to his office. I think we're living in a different environment and we have to look at issues and situations differently. I think if we don't, I think we're going to have to look at the way we're doing security in the courthouse, (too)."
Boswell didn't agree.
"You can't solve every problem in this world overnight. And let me tell you something. If someone wanted to shoot you, Jimmie, there's no way, no matter how much security they put on you, they're going to shoot you if they want to, unless you're guarded like the president of the United States," said Boswell.
But District 3 supervisor Craig Hitt took up for Smith.
"If something happens on the third floor or the 6th floor of the 11th floor, it's us around this table who are responsibility to do what we can do to prevent it," said Hitt.
"I mean, it's a terrible situation and I know that there's a lot of needs out there, but in my opinion, that ain't one of them," Boswell said.
Smith wouldn't budge and gave his reason why he wouldn't.
"Because our buildings are open to the public and people should feel secure when they walk into a public building," said Smith.
No decision was made but county administrator Tony Green was instructed to get quotes on a metal detector and report the price back to the board.