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No guarantee for HU incumbents

By Deangelo McDaniel 340-2469

HARTSELLE — Almost three hours after the deadline to apply for the Hartselle Utilities board, a council majority said it was pleased with the relationship between HU and the city.

"This is the kind of cooperation we have been looking for from Hartselle Utilities," Councilman Bill Smelser said.

Was this a sign that the city is going to reappoint HU board Chairman Mike Gunter and Jimmy Moore, even though they have interviews scheduled for July 23?

"I don't think so," Mayor Dwight Tankersley said.

Council President Kenny Thompson was not available for comment, but stated previously that the council will appoint who can best serve the city.

The incumbents have three challengers who are no strangers to the political scene in Hartselle.

Former Councilman Frank Jones was the city's representative on the HU board in 2000-04.

Will Lipsey regularly attended council meetings in the last administration and threatened to sue the city over landfill matters.

Mack Wilson, a neighbor of HU General Manager Ferrell Vest, applied for the board in 2004 when the council appointed Ed Monroe.

With the coming appointments, the current council members will have made every appointment on the HU board. This will be their first time to interview incumbents.

If they follow in the footsteps of other board appointments, it's likely that Moore and Gunter will get another six-year term. On the school board, for
example, the current council has reappointed every incumbent.

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