Childersburg Council fails to pass resolution supporting School Safety Act
by Mark Ledbetter
CHILDERSBURG — The City Council failed to pass a resolution supporting the School Safety Act at its meeting Tuesday night.

This was the second time the council had failed to act on the resolution. The measure was not considered at the March 19 meeting when a motion for immediate consideration failed and it was not brought before the council.

The resolution called for giving county residents an opportunity to vote on a 3.5 mil ad valorem tax that would add approximately $35 per $100,000 property tax. Proceeds would go to support placing School Resource Officers in each of the county schools and provide for an upgrade to the radio system utilized by police and fire departments, as well as emergency signals in local schools.

The council approved allowing City Clerk Sandra Donahoo to draft a contract agreement providing for a caretaker at the Kymulga Grist Mill.

The issue became a source of controversy at the last council meeting resulting in the resignation of some Historical Preservation Commission members.

The council had failed to appropriate enough funds to provide a caretaker for the remaining fiscal year.

During the town meeting the council adjourned to allow individuals attending to address the council with their issues, concerns, and questions.

Former Historic Preservation Commission member, Jimmy Landers, who resigned at the March 19 council meeting, asked the council a question.

“Had this taken place at the last meeting, what took place would not have had to happen,” Landers said. “What had to take place at the last Council meeting to get this pushed through, to bring to the people’s attention.”

Mayor B.J. Meeks said the council wasn’t prepared to address the issue because there was no emergency.

“She (the caretaker) hasn’t missed a paycheck,” Meeks said.

Meeks said the council needed to get advice regarding the contract and that the contract needed to include that the caretaker will operate the mill and other tasks necessary for the operation of the mill.”

“Could we not have acted on this any sooner,” Landers asked.

“Let me ask you a question,” Meeks asked. “I’m not going to get into a deep conversation with you, but what is the difference between this meeting and the last meeting.”

Landers said because the council failed to address the issue at the last meeting three people resigned.

“Maybe that doesn’t matter to you,” Landers said, “but it should matter to a lot of people.”

Landers then addressed Councilwoman Michele Mizzell thanking her for her comments and the manner in which she addressed the citizens.

Resident Mickey Finn addressed the council and asked that the “committee” over the grist mill to “forget the past and start over again and sit down without anger and work it out.”

Finn also asked the commission members who resigned to reconsider and work with the council and the city.

“We’ve got a gold mine,” Finn said speaking of the grist mill.

In other business before the council:

• Meeks announced the city received a Bronze Award from the Loss Control Division of Municipal Workers Compensation and Alabama Municipal Insurance Company acknowledging the city’s accomplishing a loss ration of 20-40 percent.

• The Childersburg Local Redevelopment Authority approved appropriating $500 to help advertise the Grits Festsival.

• Approved payment of $1,930 to the Armory Commission of Alabama to reimburse liability insurance for use of the National Guard Amory.

• Approved the request of the city clerk to host the District IV Municipal Clerks Quarterly Business Meeting and Luncheon April 24 at DeSoto Caverns at no cost to the City.

• Appropriated a 3 percent pay raise to City employees effective the next pay period.

• Hired a new street department driver and a seasonal employee to cut grass from April to October.

Contact Mark Ledbetter at mledbetter@dailyhome.com

© 2013