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Davis now over flood insurance program

The County Commission named Royce Davis administrator of the National Flood Insurance Program for Chilton County.

The part-time position had been vacant for several months.

“The federal government requires us to have that program in order to get any federal grants,” said Bill Collum, Chilton County Emergency Management and Homeland Security director. “It prevents the federal government from having to spend money time and again on places that flood over time.”

Collum cited Elba, Ala. as an example of an area that has seen repeated flooding. Before NFIP was established, the government had been giving money repeatedly to people whose homes had flooded three or four times, Collum said.

Today, if a person wanted to build a home in rural Chilton County, he or she would need to obtain a certificate of elevation. Rural residents cannot get flood insurance for homes built in a flood plain.

Whether or not a home would be in a flood plain is determined by a surveyor.

“[Davis] is really interested [in the position] and would love to do it,” Commissioner Allen Caton said during Monday’s regular meeting.

The county has budgeted about $5,900 for NFIP, including salaries, office supplies and other line items.

In other business, the commission accepted a $7,000 proposal from PRE Environmental Consultants on an abandonment plan for monitor wells located near the site of the old jail behind City Hall.

The firm has used approximately seven wells in the area to monitor the location of underground gas tanks.

Also, County Engineer Tony Wearren announced the completion of a culvert that replaced a damaged bridge on County Road 228, and the start of a bridge replacement on County Road 199.

The commission canceled its night meeting for Dec. 22. The measure passed 4-3 with Red Turnipseed, Joe Headley and Allen Caton opposing.

After some discussion, Headley, Caton, Greg Moore and Tim Mims voted to donate a portion of their pay back to the commission because of not meeting. Turnipseed abstained from voting, and Bobby Agee and Heedy Hayes opposed.

“I’m on call seven days of the week,” Hayes said, indicating that meetings are not the only determining factor in commissioners’ pay.

The commission also:

authorized the purchase of a used four-door truck for $10,000 to replace a totaled vehicle in the Road Department

voted to pay appraisers mileage as recommended by the state for use of their private vehicles on the job.