Issues arose for the city after Mayor Randy Stephens appointed Fire Chief Chris Edwards permanently, one meeting after the council voted to continue his temporary status. The council claimed that they have always had the authority to appoint the positions in past administrations, but the mayor said he had the authority after numerous discussions with the Alabama League of Municipalities.
The council also approved a draft of a letter to be sent to Attorney General Luther Strange regarding who in the city has the authority to appoint the city’s key positions. Stephens requested that another item be added to the letter, but the council chose to send the letter as it was prepared, rather than adding the item from Stephens.
“It doesn’t matter to me, but we cannot spend forever debating on some of this stuff,” Stephens said.
In other action:
•The council approved the purchase of software for the city’s fire department.
•Richard Lovelady presented the council with the results of his study of the city’s insurance policy, stating that the city does have insurance to cover the replacement cost of the armory, if it were destroyed. He also said that the city is saving a minimal amount (approximately $360 a year) by having a $1,000 deductible rather than a $500 deductible. That would mean that one single claim could more than wipe out the city’s savings, so he recommended the council lower the deductible.
•The council voted to purchase an edger, blower, pole saw and a piece of steel to repair a portion of the city’s garbage truck, as well as other items for the city’s street department.
•The council approved the purchase of ammunition for the city’s police department to use during their required qualifications on the gun range.
•The council approved a walkathon at Dora Park on March 30 at 7 a.m. for the Endometriosis Foundation of America.
•Two committees were formed--one to work toward annexing property into the city and one to begin working on removing nuisance buildings from the city.