Maplesville council votes to reinstate police officer

Published 8:47 pm Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Maplesville Town Council may have found a solution for an ongoing controversy over the council’s decision to cut a police officer for budget reasons in early August.

Officer Jerry Hood was let go from his full-time position, but the police department asked him to serve as a fill-in officer when needed.

After approving Officer Michael Bradford’s resignation Tuesday night, the council moved for Hood to be reinstated as a full-time officer and for part-time officers to be hired.

“We desperately need it,” said Police Chief Todd Ingram, noting the department is severely understaffed and still one full-time officer short.

Ingram suggested Hood also be promoted to narcotics officer.

In new business, the council discussed increasing the fees for notary service and copies.

“We’re just seeing an increase in (notary) traffic,” said Cindy Brown, court clerk.

Staff cuts have caused most of the notary and copy services to fall on Brown and Town Clerk Sheila Haigler.

“Since we’ve been cut back, time is of the essence every day,” Haigler said. “I think we need to charge. That way, it would be a help to residents, but we would also benefit.”

The council voted to adjourn before discussing all items on the agenda because two members were absent and one had to leave at 7 p.m.

Because of lack of quorum, the council decided to hold a meeting Thursday, Sept. 22 to discuss unfinished business; namely, a bid on fire grants and the budget for FY 2011-2012.

In other business, the council approved the following actions:

•Approved an equipment request from the fire department.

•Approved reports on monthly statistics, investigation, warrant and municipal court.

•Moved to pay for labor to install wrap-around push bar guards on three police cars.

•Approved the completion of the NIMS Certification.

•Approved the making of a Chamber of Commerce 2012 membership directory and reimbursing council members for travel expenses.

•Approved the financial report.

•Reviewed and approved monthly bills and minutes from the council’s Aug. 9 meeting and a special-called meeting on Sept. 7.