Council aims to limit confusion

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 7, 2005

MARION – In February, the Marion City Council disagreed on whether to increase the price residents pay for water treatment. In May, council members didn’t see eye to eye on the purchase of new police vehicles. In October, a heated discussion filtered through the doors of the chamber, as members discussed police chief Tony Bufford’s salary while he was on military leave.

But in December, the council agreed to put their differences aside to work together in 2006 to better the city of Marion.

“We just want to start on a positive note. It’s been a hard year and there’s been a lot of confusion,” Marion Mayor Anthony Long said. “We spent last year trying to get everything in order, so we are going to spend next year trying to work on getting more industry.”

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“We are going to try our best to put the city up to 100 percent and work with whatever we have,” councilman James Hollis said at Monday night’s meeting.

At the meeting, the council was informed about the empty positions on the Industrial Board.

In order to handle unfinished business for the fiscal year, the positions need to be filled before the start of the new year.

“We met today about it,” Long said Tuesday. “And we’ll probably meet again the first of the week.”

The council was also introduced to three new police officers Monday night.

Alvetta Coats, Ray Blanks and Mike Palmer recently joined the Marion Police Department and met the local leaders Monday night. Gregory Evans is expected to join the force as well.

“Chief Bufford hired them. We’re just trying to have a strong police department,” Long said. “And I just wanted the council to meet them. We owe the council that much to show them, and the public needs to know them too.”

Although the council will meet about filling the board positions, the regular city council meetings will not take place until Jan. 8, 2006 at 6:30 p.m.

“But we can call one if we need it,” Long said.