The council heard from magistrate Joseph Thomas, who has been clearing up the city’s backlogged cases. The court system has also been able to generate funds over the last few month to pay some hazardous duty pay for the police department and pay a portion of money to the city’s general fund, which has not been possible in several years, according to Mayor Dennis Welch.
Assistant Police Chief Chad Gurganus discussed the city’s trial of new Southern Linc phones. The five phones and service will be approximately $200 a month. The city is currently paying approximately $180 for two phones.
The council discussed the concerns over the city’s inability to use the state’s website to write tickets, forcing them to use paper tickets which are backordered currently.
Welch said the city’s police chief has to complete a class in order for new officer Blake Powell to be certified on the website, which has not happened. Police chief Andy Powell was not at the meeting.
A member of the audience asked about the use of the city’s drug dog. The mayor questioned the city’s magistrate regarding cases involving the dog, and was told that there were no pending or resolved cases involving the dog. The council did not make any decisions, but may consider removing the dog from service. The council heard from Blake Powell, who said he would pay for his own training as a canine handler if the city decided to retain the canine unit.
Andy Powell is currently the city’s only certified canine handler.
Much of the meeting was conducted in close proximity to the council table and in hushed tones that were not discernable from the audience.
In other business:
•The council discussed pending litigation in an executive session. No public discussion or decisions regarding the litigation occurred.
•The council passed a National Incident Management System resolution in accordance with the federal system.