West Chilton Fire seeks restored image

Published 4:17 pm Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Vernon Lee and Howey McNeill came before the County Commission during its Monday meeting and presented the financial review of the West Chilton Volunteer Fire Department.

The in-person presentation was met with appreciation by the Commissioners, as each member thanked Lee and McNeill for stopping by.

According to Chairman Allen Caton, this was the first time that a fire department has brought forward a financial report during a meeting since he has been on the Commission.

Normally the departments just drop off their reports.

Together they went over the details of the review and expressed how the department as a whole has changed for the better.

“We have worked real hard to repair the community’s trust,” Lee said. “We talk about every dollar that is spent,” Lee said.

According to Lee, since he assumed the role as board president of the West Chilton fire department he has been diligently working to repair the department’s image after top officials were accused of alleged thefts of funding.

“It’s always good to have a second set of eyes looking at everything,” McNeill said. “It makes everyone involved a little more comfortable.”

Chief Deputy Gerald Mims filled in for Sheriff John Shearon and brought to the Commission’s attention the inmate medical cost, which is currently trending upward.

According to Mims, they have a cost pool of $77,000 for this year and are projected to go over that mark by over $47,000.

Mims informed the Commission that there is enough money in the budget right now, but it will begin to see the effects in the last two months.

“I can’t remember ever having this issue,” Mims said.

However, medical care of inmates is a necessity and is something that cannot be avoided.

In other news from the meeting, the Commission:

  • Approved providing info to Revenue Discovery Systems for the purpose of looking into the possible collecting of the county lodging tax.
  • Approved July 3 to be considered a holiday for all county employees, which included an amendment to the Sheriff’s Department budget to be taken out of the general fund. Chairman Allen Caton voted no.
  • Approved permission to pave County Road 59 from State Road 22 to U.S. 31 (1.1 miles) with the money coming from the building, road and bridge fund.
  • Approved permission to pave County Road 53 (Little John Road) from the Clanton city limits to County Road 37 (two miles) using money from the building, road and bridge fund.
  • Approved permission for the chairman to sign an agreement with ALDOT for construction of County Road 2 Bridge. The money will come out of the land management fund.
  • Approved to lower the speed limit on County Road 1016, a dead end paved road, from 45 to 25 mph. This is due to the high number of residents in a short area.
  • Approved taking the next step in training poll workers in the advancement of voting machine technology. It will cost $35,000 and $24,000 is in the specific account. As a result, the county will have to pay the remaining $11,000 for printers and necessary software.
  • Approved the hiring of Robert McCluskey for a maintenance position.
  • Granted approval of the Saginaw Pipe credit application.
  • Closed nominations for the Cawaco Resource Conservation & Development Council Board.
  • Commissioner Joseph Parnell nominated Jason Calhoun to the Mental Health Board. Nomiations will remain open for another meeting.
  • Closed nominations for the Merit Board.
  • Approved the minutes and to pay the bills from the June 12 meeting.