Council 6 July 2017
offered by Mr. Mike Lanier.
to order at 6 PM by Mayor Wolff. Roll
call showed all members present.
minutes were approved as read.
report and comments:
Mayor Wolff noted there are some issues at
the park. The bathrooms are in terrible
shape. The Mayor ask Council person
Skinner to review the problems and let him know if he needed assistance from
the sewer department.
It was noted that software problems are
plaguing the city. There is a special
account set up for new software. A cost
effectiveness study on purchasing new software will be conducted.
Mayor Wolff also thanked Council person
Davis for her Independence Day speech.
An ordinance dealing with Mayor’s Budget FYE
9/30/2017 was offered for its first reading by Interim City Clerk Mike Hinson. Mr. Hinson offered a “proposed” budget to
finish out the remainder of FY 2017 that shows the city at $2,000,000.00 in
debt at the end of that period.
budget was prepared primarily because the USDA grant for the library requires
the city send a budget every year to keep the USDA from asking for the grant
money back. Mr. Hinson encouraged the
council to approve this “proposed” budget.
asked how the USDA had been satisfied in the past years, he noted he had just
kept using the same budget, updating the date of the budget, and sending it in
but this latest letter (news media was not furnished a copy) contained a threat
that they were on the verge of asking for a return of this grant money unless
they received an updated budget.
brought about a heated discussion amongst the council members with the primary
unanswered question being raised by Council person Fountain as to why the
council was just now being informed of this problem.
After a long period of “back and forth” the city attorney asked to see a
copy of the letter from the USDA.
Interim City Clerk Hinson asked the council to suspend the business
portion of the meeting while he retired to his office to retrieve the
letter. After a break of 5 minutes Mayor
Wolff directed business resume without the Interim City Clerk being on
*********To be continued below*********
Compliance Officer Bobby McNeil brought forth
a resolution declaring a building located at 406 Magnolia an “Unsafe Structure”. This has been an ongoing problem but now Mr.
McNeil has sent all the proper paperwork to the owner.
resolution dealing with a “Declaration of Weeds and Debris” is attached to the
same address. Mr. McNeil noted the house
was salvageable even though the windows are mission.
discussion it was determined the city would clean up the area and send a bill
to the owner.
The last remaining item under old business was
introduced by Council person Upton and dealt with painting murals on the walls
of city buildings. This issue had been
brought forth at a council meeting in the past.
Attorney Hartley had recommended at that time the city not undertake
painting these murals considering the buildings were private vice city property
and it would require money being spent to upgrade private property.
********Return of Interim City Clerk Hinson
with USDA letter*********
Mr. Hinson introduced the USDA letter containing the strong wording that
the USDA may demand a return of the grant funds used for the library.
Council person Fountain immediately noted the letter was dated 4 April
and demanded to know why this was just now coming to the council’s
attention. She chastised Mr. Hinson for
shoddy work, noting that he has been working for the city in excess of 2 years
and was initially hired to get the city’s finances together and prepare a
budget, none of which has been accomplished.
Council person Caylor expressed the fact he was upset with a “thrown
together” budget that showed the city $2,000,000.00 in the hole. He noted that if the best that could be put
together for a budget was this travesty, at least show the city as being
Mayor Wolff called for action on the budget
ordinance. Council person Upton made a
motion to approve this “budget”. After a
long pause, Council person Skinner seconded the motion. When a vote was called for the results were; Mayor
Wolff, Council person Upton and Council person Skinner voted yes to adopt
it. Council persons Caylor, Davis and
Fountain voted no resulting in a stalemate.
Council person Davis brought forth a recommendation
that the city adopt a classroom at the new Southside Magnet School at a cost of
$5,500.00. This adoption will entitle
the city to put a plaque on the door.
Mayor Wolff offered his support to this proposal noting that all the
council members names be put on the plaque.
A motion to approve was made by Council person Upton and seconded by
Council person Davis. Motion passed by
A resolution for a one time lump sum
retirement payment was introduced. It
was noted the retirees are not under any automatic pay increase. Another lengthy discussion ensued with
Council person Upton noting there had been no pay increase for those receiving social
security. After discussion a vote was
taken with 4 voting no and 1 abstaining.
Council person Caylor had to abstain because he is on the state
retirement system and as such was ineligible to vote.
Mayor Wolff noted that several of the city’s
buildings were in a sad state of cleanliness.
He noted that the city’s had these building cleaned in the past but the
money went to a non-local company. He
requested that the contract for this cleaning be rebid. Motion carried by unanimous vote.
Mayor Wolff desired a discussion of the
employee sick leave policy. It was noted
that 600 hours was the most an employee could hold with anything coming after
that being lost if not taken within a certain time period.
has been equating to a problem with employees taking their sick days off which
is perfectly legal but puts the city in a bind considering they will need to
bring someone in to cover the position and shift of the person on sick
leave. This results in overtime payment
to the employee filling in.
Wolff suggested the possibility of requiring a doctor’s excuse for the person
to be able to draw their sick leave pay.
person Upton offered a suggestion that the city pay the person their sick leave
pay and allow them to work that day too.
This would eliminate the need for overtime pay which has created a
problem as of late.
Wolff directed that all department heads be contacted and report at the next
meeting as to how they intend to stop overtime payments for the remainder of
the fiscal year and turn in budget request for next year. Also, the mayor wants the issue of city
vehicles being taken home by city workers addressed and curtailed for use
emergency uses only.
Council person Fountain addressed concerns of residents in the Park
Street area. She stated she’d received
the typical complaints of speeding etc., but, Park Street is a one way street
and people are ignoring that and creating a hazard to traffic.
Approved by unanimous vote.
Next meeting will be Thursday, 25 July