Thorsby’s new judge has big ideas for townBy Stephen Dawkins Published 5:46pm Tuesday, July 24, 2012
As Thorsby’s new municipal court judge, Amanda Baxley is charged with making decisions based on what is best for the town and its residents.
She plans to make some of those beneficial decisions even when she isn’t holding court.
Baxley has several ideas she thinks will benefit Thorsby. She presented those ideas to a receptive town council at its meeting on July 16.
Mayor Dearl Hilyer appointed Baxley to replace previous municipal court judge Alex Jackson. One of Baxley’s first orders of business was to recommend to Hilyer a candidate for the position of town prosecutor.
Fletcher Green was named to that position.
“He was my first choice,” Baxley said. “I knew he would have the work ethic to put into this.”
Baxley and Green both practice in Clanton. The town judge said she thinks the pair’s proximity to Thorsby will help them run the town’s court business more efficiently.
Next, Baxley would like to see the construction of a bench at the Thorsby Municipal Annex. The building, just off Highway 31, is the site of the town’s court proceedings and town council meetings.
Council members sit around a large table for their meetings. Baxley sits behind a small desk. She said she thinks a bench–a raised wooden structure facing the audience–would enhance both the professionalism and safety of the proceedings.
“It would be based on what the city of Jemison has done, because I’m familiar with their court,” Baxley said. “We’re thinking a semicircle like the [Chilton County] commission.”
Baxley’s husband, Jason, a state trooper, has volunteered his efforts in helping construct the bench.