City pay raises approved

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The Selma Times-Journal

Across the board raises for city employees were approved at Monday night’s Selma City Council meeting.

The approved raises will go into effect next pay period.

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“Good,” President George Evans said. “Prior to Christmas.” The council unanimously voted to approve appointed and unappointed salaries separately.

Mayor James Perkins Jr. asked the council to approve a modified plan reducing two appointee salaries by $3,000 to $4,000.

The council entertained a motion to prorate appointed salary increases, phasing the increase in over two years. The proposal was voted down in a 5 to 4 vote against a half now, half later proposition.

The city council also unanimously approved $15,680 for tree replacement in Selma.

In other city business:

The bowling alley at 3002 Citizen’s Parkway received approval for a liquor license. Application for license from United Food & Fuel, 406 Highway 80 E., was tabled.

“The application says there’s a church within 50 feet of United Food & Fuel,” Councilman Reid Cain said.

City attorney, Jimmy Nunn said, “We have no idea if there is any opposition to it.”

The mayor later suggested a city statute requiring applying businesses to post signs on the structures under consideration to advise the public of their intent to sell liquor. “Maybe if it had the date when it would before the council, it would be easier for people to come and voice their opposition if they had any,” Perkins said.

The Islander Steak/Seafood Restaurant received approval to sell liquor on the premises.

The council came together again to approve $15,000 from unappropriated expenses to fund the Drug Task Force. Attorney Andrew Arrington, prosecutor with the District Attorney’s office, spoke to the council to ask for matching funds.

Councilwoman Jean Martin said, “I don’t think we can afford not to do this.”

Councilmembers Johnnie Leashore, Bennie Ruth Crenshaw, and Jannie Venter made appeals to Arrington to focus on areas in their wards that have entrenched drug trafficking.

“Clean up Ward 6,” Leashore said. “You’ve got an area where retired citizens are held hostage in their home. St. Phillips Street. St. Ann. It’s scandalous.”

City employee days off for the New Year were given a momentary discussion, as the question of tax office closings being a problem had not been resolved.

The mayor held that he had been good to his word. “I did exactly what I said I would do. I asked personnel to go ahead and give the days off when you did not vote the raise up or down at the last meeting.”

That being done, the council readily agreed to leave the holiday vacation days in place for city workers.