Demopolis council says goodbye to three members

Published 6:36 pm Thursday, October 18, 2012

The next Demopolis City Council meeting will have a much different look than the one that convened Thursday in Rooster Hall.

Thursday’s meeting was the last for outgoing councilmen Thomas Moore, Melvin Yelverton and Jack Cooley. New council members Charles Jones Jr., D. Harris Nelson and Cleveland Cole will be sworn in at the next meeting.

Yelverton was absent Thursday, but Moore and Cooley spoke about their time with the council.

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“I just want to thank everyone for an opportunity to serve,” said Moore, who has served on the council for more than 20 years. “I’ve always had the city at heart … I’m going to miss it, but it’s time to move on.”

Cooley asked the incoming council to commit to keep lines of communication open and approach all financial decisions with solid judgement.

“It’s been a privilege in serving the last eight years. This has been a great, wonderful time,” Cooley said.

In the business part of the meeting, Mayor Mike Grayson announced that the city should finish this budget year in the black by about $177,000. The figure could go down as final expenses are paid. The city’s budget year goes from October through September.

Grayson reported the city’s tax revenues were $4.475 million, down .12 percent from last year.

“We were right at the same amount,” Grayson said.

Jason Pendergrass, who manages the Demopolis airport, also spoke to the council seeking permission to apply for a grant. The money would be used to remove trees, install security fencing and gates and possibly widen taxi ways.

The city would be required to make a 5 percent match to get the grant, which could total as much as $71,000.

Moore and Cooley said they though the incoming council should decide whether to seek the grant or not.

The grant’s deadline is Nov. 15, so new council will need to discuss the application sometime early next month.

The council also approved amending the police department budget to include money from Sonic for security.

Adrienne Nixon Dixon also addressed the council about the condition of First Avenue, saying recently done paving work is incomplete.

Jones, who is on the water board, said a sewer project was being done and that paving begin early, before it was complete. He told Dixon that paving was halted until the sewer work could be finished, which could take up to another month. When paving resumes, driveways will be filled in where the meet the street, he said.