Council deadlocked over positions

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 13, 2003

Selma still doesn’t have a city clerk or treasurer after its Monday night city council meeting.

Votes to appoint secretary Lois Williams and assistant treasurer Sequita Oliver interim city clerk and city treasurer, respectively, failed. Council members Nancy Sewell, B.L. Tucker, James Durry and President George Evans voted in favor of the appointments. Council members Glenn Sexton, Rita Sims Franklin, Jean Martin and Bennie Ruth Crenshaw opposed the appointments.

Councilman Sam Randolph wasn’t present at Monday’s meeting.

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Evans explained before the vote that it would take five votes to make an appointment to either position.

As discussion on the appointments opened, Sewell leafed through a number of resolutions the council had approved earlier. Each one required the city clerk to be involved.

Sewell added that Williams and Oliver had propped the city up, and were owed the positions.

Sexton, though, said he wanted to reopen the selection process. Crenshaw agreed, adding she wasn’t going to rush to judgment.

Tucker, however, questioned the council on why it had taken so long to put Williams and Oliver in the positions.

Durry concurred, saying Williams and Oliver had proven themselves capable and suggested to the council they needed to be given a chance.

After the city clerk vote failed, Evans suggested Mayor James Perkins Jr. appoint someone as acting city clerk until the council could come to some agreement. He clarified he wasn’t passing the responsibility to Perkins, but instead wanted someone in the position since the council couldn’t agree.

Sewell then motioned for Oliver to be named city treasurer. Sexton questioned if an executive session would be needed, but Evans demurred. He added, the delay in appointing a city clerk and treasurer was making the council look bad, and he merely wanted a temporary solution.

The vote to appoint Oliver as city treasurer then failed 4 – 4.

In other matters, the council:

At Thursday’s council work session, Sewell said Oliver had tendered her resignation for her city clerk duties. The letter was received in late March by personnel director Valeria Jones

Perkins referenced a recent article in the Selma-Times Journal stating the council hadn’t accepted her resignation for her city clerk duties. However, on Monday Perkins said it wasn’t the council’s decision to accept the resignation; instead, it was his, and he did accept it.

Sexton &045;&045; a member of the board &045;&045; said the reason Perkins wanted to drop the suit because he realized it would be lost.

A vote to drop the suit passed 6 – 2 with Sexton and Tucker &045;&045; both water board members &045;&045; opposing.