Sumiton explores potential industrial park


SUMITON - The Sumiton City Council on Tuesday heard Mayor Petey Ellis discuss a potential opportunity for the city that could provide land for an industrial park on Hull Road.

Troy Ford, who owns property adjacent to 6 acres of city property on Hull Road, thinks there’s coal beneath their property. Even though the city doesn’t own mineral rights, Ford wants to approach the McWane Corporation, who owns the mineral rights.

If McWane determines there is coal under the property, he would like to work out an agreement where the company buys and removes the coal and afterward reclaims the property. If this works out, then Ford would give the acreage he owns to the city for an industrial park. 

“It would enhance the property, and there may even be some money in it for the city,” Ellis said.

The council approved a motion to explore that project further.

In other action, the council: 

• Heard Ellis ask the council if the city wants to continue using RDS/VENU for sales tax collections. It’s time to renew the contract with the vendor and Ellis wanted to ensure the council did not have any problems with the current vendors. No one had issues, so the council voted to ratify the contract for another year. 

• Heard the council discuss the specifics of adhering to the Municipal Workers Compensation Fund, Inc. (MWCF) guidelines. The city gets a discount on insurance premiums for their workers when they adhere to certain guidelines as set out by the MWCF. The council approved a motion stating that the city would comply with the guidelines.

• Heard Ellis report that the city is through with the Recreational Trails (Rails to Trails) project, which is closed out. The final inspection indicated all the details appear to be in compliance with state records. 

• Heard Ellis report that he’s been in discussions with District 4 Walker County Commissioner Steven Aderholt and it’s his understanding that the county plans to pave from Main Street to the city limits on Bryan Road. This will resurface the roads to the Pineview Landfill. The city will absorb the cost of the materials for the project, which will include striping.

Ellis also asked Street and Sanitation Superintendent George Woods to get pricing on reflectors that go in the middle of the street, as he thinks the reflectors would be cheaper than painting.