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City begins services head search process

The City of Selma is in the market for a department head.

The Selma City Council voted 6 to 3 at its Monday meeting to open an interview process for a permanent supervisor of Selma’s General Services department. Council members Glenn Sexton, Rita Sims Franklin, Nancy Sewell, B.L. Tucker, James Durry and Council President George Evans voted in favor. Council members Jean Martin, Sam Randolph and Bennie Ruth Crenshaw opposed.

Code Enforcement Officer Henry Hicks is currently serving as acting superintendent of the department. The former superintendent, Marcus Hopkins, wasn’t re-appointed to the position by a 7 to 0 vote of the council at its Nov. 24 meeting. Council members B.L. Tucker and Bennie Ruth Crenshaw weren’t present for that vote.

Hopkins was placed on administrative leave without pay in September due to an alleged financial transaction involving a number of General Service employees and an individual resident.

The vote to open the interview process stemmed from an administrative committee meeting on the matter. Perkins informed the council Monday night that the committee discussed the issue and chose to keep Hicks as acting superintendent for the remainder of the term.

Tucker, however, said he wanted the council to conduct interviews for the position. Sexton agreed, adding that Hicks should return to his position of code enforcement officer while General Services supervisor John C. Smith become superintendent of the department. Sewell noted that she thought code enforcement in the city had suffered recently and that Smith should be allowed to become acting supervisor. Martin, however, said that following the committee’s recommendation was the best option. &uot;We should leave well enough alone,&uot; she added.

Crenshaw said the push to open interviews wasn’t about someone’s capabilities, but was because certain council members wanted it. She added that council members already knew how they would vote and she wouldn’t participate in the process. Perkins echoed the statement.

Franklin then motioned that the interview process be opened to find a temporary or permanent superintendent for General Services.

When Perkins said that the council couldn’t conduct interviews for temporary positions, Franklin cut the word &uot;temporary&uot; from the motion. The vote passed. In other matters the council:

Voted 5 to 4 to supplement Hicks’ salary by $6,000 as compensation for the additional work he’s done as acting superintendent of General Services. Sexton, Franklin, Sewell and Tucker opposed the supplement.