Council to discuss resolution

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 7, 2005

Selma’s City Council will decide tonight whether or not to pass resolution R146-04/05.

The resolution, which has been hotly debated, would require individual council members to put information requests before the entire Council before being able to request the information from the mayor.

The law was suggested after Councilman Cecil Williamson asked several department heads questions about finances.

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Mayor James Perkins Jr. and several members of the City Council said that Williamson didn’t follow proper procedures for getting the information and suggested that Williamson would attempt to use the information against Perkins.

The Council asked City Attorney Jimmy Nunn to draft R 146-04/05 in response.

Williamson, after reading the resolution at the last City Council meeting, said the law violated the free flow of information and threatened to sue if it passed.

“”I’m going to vote against this, I’m going to challenge this in court, this is so unconstitutional,” Williamson said.

Williamson also said the problem stemmed because Crenshaw, and a group of five council members he called the “Crenshaw bloc” put the resolution together because of a personal bias against them. He said that Crenshaw and Johnnie Leashore had a personnel bias against him

“(It’s a) personal vendetta against me because I’m white,” Williamson said.

The five council members he referred to as “the Crenshaw bloc” usually votes together, including the new law, at least so far.

Local attorney J.L. Chestnut said that while he thought the resolution was a bad idea, Williamson wouldn’t have much of a case in court.

“I think it would be a very close case in the courts,” he said.

If the council votes the same as the last council meeting, 5-4, then the law will pass.

Council members indicated that the “Crenshaw bloc” would likely remain intact.