SETTLES REINSTATED BY OES - Rain gauge Problems Being Corrected

The state Office of Emergency Services is reorganizing oversight of its flood warning system.

Many of the state's rain gauges have not been functional during major flooding in the state, and the early warning system has been affected.

The OES plan is part of a settlement with a former supervisor who challenged his demotion.

George Settles of Calhoun, who was demoted in August from supervisor of the system to technician, will be restored to his former position.

But oversight of the flood warning system will be split between Settles and another official, Jim Steele.

Steele will supervise maintenance of the gauges while Settles will maintain the system's computer network and storm watch system, said OES officials.

A National Weather Service meteorologist had told lawmakers in September that up to 40 percent of 280 gauges around the state fail to work properly.

While many of the problems have been corrected, work is continuing.