County receives grant for new weather sirens
by JENNIFER COHRON
Dec 18, 2012 | 1285 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Walker County has received a grant through the Federal Emergency Management Agency for six new emergency warning sirens.

The project was approved for $104,472, of which $78,354 would be federal funds and $26,118 would be provided by the county.

The sirens are set to be installed in Oakman, Empire, Nauvoo, Parrish and Cordova, which would receive sirens on both River Road and School Road.

The project was brought up during Monday’s meeting of the Walker County Commission but tabled after Johnny Burnette, director of the local EMA, offered to discuss it with commissioners further if they postponed the decision until after the first of the year.

Burnette estimated the cost of purchasing and installing each siren to be approximately $9,200.

Burnette also mentioned that a few sirens around the county are not currently working for various reasons, which concerned District 1 Commissioner Keith Davis.

Davis asked how many sirens are out of order and what time table is in place for repairing them.

Burnette specifically mentioned one in Dilworth that was recently struck by lightning.

District 2 Commissioner Dan Wright said he has also received several complaints about the siren at the old Saragossa fire station.

“It works, but they say it doesn’t work real loud, which it can’t because it’s a small one,” Burnette said.

Davis requested that a check be conducted on the county’s sirens and asked for a report on the findings at a future council meeting. “Maybe present that to us with these others and the total cost of we’ve got to have to get these operational. In Walker County, we are fully aware of tornadoes and inclement weather that we have, so I think this is a priority of the county that we have these operational,” Davis said.

“It hasn’t been that long since we made the rounds, but we can make another,” Burnette said.

In other action from the meeting, the commission:

•approved a calendar of the Association of County Commissions of Alabama regarding training and travel expenses.

•heard from Johnnye Crowell, operator of a local no-kill animal shelter in east Walker County.

Crowell said the shelter opened as an affiliate of Save Our Strays but will become an independent nonprofit called Nana’s Angels beginning Jan. 1.

It currently houses 22 dogs and 42 cats, according to Crowell.

Crowell presented the commissioners with a list of monthly expenses for the shelter and asked for any support the county can provide in the coming months.