News from the Tennessee Valley State, Local and National news

Athens City Council

ATHENS — On Monday, the Athens City Council took the following action:

  • Introduced a resolution from the Alabama Department of Transportation regarding the Interstate 65 interchange
    the state is building at Hunts-ville-Browns Ferry Road. The council did not approve it because members have questions about the requirement that the city take over maintenance of any service roads, traffic signals, etc.

  • Heard a report from Public Works Director James Rich that the Housing Authority wants the city to take over maintenance of roads at Sanderfer Road Apartments and Higgins Court on Hine Street. Some council members expressed concerns about accepting the private drives as city roads. Rich said he will get cost estimates on repairing and maintaining them.

  • Heard a report from Councilman Ronnie Marks that the Zoning Board, not the council or mayor, decided the Limestone County Churches Involved Food Bank did not meet residential zoning requirements at its location on Washington Street. Marks said if the food bank wanted to appeal that decision, it would have to go before the Circuit Court and not the council.

  • Heard a request from Councilman Jimmy Gill that the Air Streamers who camp at Athens High the week during the
    Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddlers Convention not receive free electrical service. Ben Wiley, head of the Recreation Department, said he'll figure out the cost to his department for the service.

  • Heard a concern from Councilman Ronnie Marks that there is not adequate power for the vendors coming to this month's Storytelling Festival
    on the square. Electric Department Manager Gary Scroggins said the county owns the utili-
    ty supply, and he needs county approval to upgrade the secondary wiring to handle grills and refrigerators. Marks and Councilwoman Milly Caudle said they will work with Limestone County Commission Chairman David Seibert on a solution.

  • Named Caudle president pro tem.

  • Approved a travel expense for James Schrimsher, Electric, $37.38, commercial driver license exam, Cullman.

  • Changed November meeting dates to Nov. 5 and Nov. 19 due to Veterans Day and a convention conflict.

  • Approved a one-time, lump-sum longevity pay to retirees participating in the Employees Retirement System. The state set the raise at 7 percent, which will cost $21,000 for utilities retirees and $24,000 from General Fund.

  • Approved letting the mayor sign a contract with veterinarian Dr. Robert Pitman to be the contractor for the Spay and Neuter Pets Program for low-income citizens. Gill voted no because he wanted assurance only Athens citizens benefit from the city's $5,000 allocation.

  • Approved administration of an Alabama Department of Environmental Management pollution control grant for $128,000 for the new treatment facility.

  • Entered into an agreement with CSX to run a water pipeline across the railroad as part of the Roy Long Road upgrade.

    Holly Hollman

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