Sylacauga City Council approves funds for little league teams
by Emily McLain
SYLACAUGA — During its Tuesday night meeting, the City Council unanimously approved one-time payments of $250 to three local ball teams advancing to regional all-stars tournaments.

The funds will support Sylacauga Softball Little League as it competes in the 11- and 12- year-old girls’ regionals in Warner Robbins, Ga., July 24-Aug. 1, as well as the 13- to 16-year-old girls’ regionals in Fort Myers, Fla., on the same dates. The meeting agenda was amended to include funding for a third team advancing to regional tournaments – the 12-year-old boys’ Cal Ripken baseball team that will compete in Palm Beach Garden, Fla., July 24-29. Each of the teams recently won the state championship. Thirteen-year-old Babe Ruth all-stars also competed at the state level, but were defeated.

“We want to congratulate all these young guys and girls,” Mayor Doug Murphree said during his report. “They represented our city very well, and we’re proud of them. We wish the ones that are going to advance to the next level much luck and success.”

The money is given to support the teams “in exchange for promoting the city of Sylacauga through name recognition and the (teams’) athletic professionalism,” the meeting agenda stated.

In other business at Tuesday’s meeting, the council:

• Heard Fairmont resident Gene Browning ask that the city take immediate steps to correct stray and loose dog issues in the city, particularly in the Fairmont neighborhood. “Every time I cut my grass, I have to clean my yard up,” he said. “I go out this morning and there’s my paper in other peoples’ yard, so I’m asking y’all to do something about it. I don’t want something done about it next month or next year; I’m asking you to do something about it now, because everybody’s dogs is running loose. It is unreal.”

• Heard Nashville Avenue resident Amanda Green say residents sometimes care for stray animals without wanting ownership, in regards to the proposed pet registration fees being considered by the council. “Just remember a lot of Sylacaugans love our pets and take care of them, but sometimes we take care of too many, and those aren’t really our responsibility,” she said. Green also requested an update on the city’s sinkhole and sewer issues. Council President Rocky Lucas suggested she talk with the Utilities Board, but Green said, “Everybody’s land, roads, sewers are falling in, and (the Utilities Board) is saying it’s the city’s road issue, and I promise you I wouldn’t be here if I hadn’t wore the phone lines out.”

• Accepted a recommendation from City Hall Project Manager Mike Whetstone to reject the three bids received for asbestos abatement of City Hall and rebid the project. Two bids received did not meet specifications and a third bid was above the budget, according to a letter from Whetstone.

• Moved Jonathan Hall from a supernumerary position on the Board of Adjustments and Appeals to a member position, filling the unexpired term of resigned Ricky Thornton ending January 2015.

• Appointed David Morrill to a five-year term on the Airport Board.

• Approved expenses for the following training sessions:

• Street Superintendent Tommy Woolley to attend Alabama Public Works Association 2013 summer meeting July 31-Aug. 2 in Orange Beach. Registration fee is $250 plus lodging and meals.

• Sandy Sorenson to attend two payroll specialist certification courses on Sept. 26 and Oct. 18 in Opelika. Fee is $105 each plus lodging and meals.

• Mayor, council and City Clerk to attend the National League of Cities Congress of Cities and Exposition in Seattle, Wash., on Nov. 13-16. Fee is $405 for new attendees and $495 for others plus lodging, travel and meals.

• Up to two people to attend Alabama Recycling Coalition’s Dive Into Recycling conference July 18-19 in Birmingham. Fee is $150 each plus mileage and meals.

• Police Sgt. Mike Moore, Sgt. Ryan Gaither, Officer Christopher Childress and Officer Matt Abrams to attend ALERRT active shooter training Aug. 9-10 in Opelika. Only cost of meals will be incurred.

• Police officers Willie Kidd, Harry Brown and David Kimbrough to attend anti-terrorism training for first responders July 31 in Jacksonville. Only cost of meals will be incurred.

• Heard Murphree proclaim Aug. 6 as National Night Out in Sylacauga. Citizens are invited to participate in NNO from 6-8 p.m. at Noble Park. Murphree also announced the city is upgrading several of its weather sirens. He thanked the Utilities Board for the services it has provided to help with replacement of the sirens.

• Approved minutes of the regular meeting held July 3.

• Declared weather sirens and parts, a flat-panel TV set, and various computer components as surplus property and authorized disposal.

• Accepted a recommendation to authorize a $23 refund to judicial correction service for overpayment of June municipal court fines.

• Accepted a recommendation to authorize Municipal Court Clerk Ken Sisk to refund court-ordered cash bonds as follows: $1,000 to Sylvia Keith on behalf of Tommarious Baker; $500 each to Michael Ward and Timothy Smith on behalf of Laura Thornberry; and $1,000 to Maleia Keel on behalf of Jarred Abrams.

• Authorized: payments totaling $193,950.65 for accounts payable for June; payments totaling $267,668 for June payrolls; and approved all checks, transfers and financial statements for June.

The next regular council meeting is Aug. 7 at 9 a.m. at City Hall.

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© 2013