Council meets, approves plan proposal

Published 12:00 am Thursday, July 6, 2006

Should the city of Demopolis take the steps to map out their future for the next 25 years? After a 5-0 vote at Thursday’s meeting of the Demopolis City Council, the answer was a resounding yes – at least for them to hear a proposal for the city’s comprehensive plan.

“Comprehensive planning is an orderly blueprint for improving a community,” said Larry Watts, a professional planner from Birmingham. Watts was invited to speak at the council meeting by members of the Alabama Tombigbee Regional Council. Watts was brought into speak by the ATRC’s John Clyde Riggs.

“You know where you are going to develop, you have your guidelines and as things mature you can see where you are every five years. Making sure everyone has the same picture of the future is important.”

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The benefits of doing a comprehensive plan for the city of Demopolis is that it gives the city leaders an opportunity to support economic development programs, and will also help them to set a list of long-range goals.

“It’s more for a picture of the future,” Watts told the Council.

According to Watts, it should take no more than six months for a comprehensive plan to be made for the city of Demopolis.

The council also accepted a bid on the Whitfield Canal Project. Money from the FEMA grant will go to cover the expense of fixing the drainage problem in that area.

The city council also voted to allow roadwork to be done on some of the streets in the city of Demopolis.

The total paving amount will cost $1.297 million, which was bid by Bunn Construction.

The company will have 120 days to complete the job.

“The trick is to watch it was it’s being built,” said Bob Almon of Almon and Associates. “We have an idea of how much asphault is supposed to go down. If he overruns we only pay 50-percent, but if he overruns too much then we don’t pay them anything.”

Some of the projects that will be covered under the repaving will be a turning lane at the Sportsplex and the repaving of parts of Lock and Dam Road.

The council unanimously voted to bring a new set of computers to the Demopolis Library. Library Director Lindsy Gardner presented the council with a bid fro Dell Computers $8386.56. The price is a fair-market value price for six new computers.

The council also voted to table naming a replacement for Board of Education member Braswell Braswell.

Braswell stepped down for her position on July 5.

“It has been an honor to serve the children of Demopolis, and I appreciate the opportunity that the Council has provided me,” Braswell said in a letter of resignation to Demopolis Mayor Cecil P. Williamson.

The City Council also approved the new usage guidelines for the Demopolis Civic Center. The point of contention was the cost of clean-up.

In a 4-2 vote, the council passed a motion giving patrons the option of paying a flat fee of $150 at the time of rental for clean-up or cleaning up the facility themselves after an event.

The meeting adjourned with an executive session to settle a property dispute focusing on a property at the corner of Capitol and Arch Street.

The next meeting of the Demopolis City Council will be held on July 20 beginning at 5:15 p.m.