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Council approves $387K for 4 positions

In its first official week on the job, the Selma City Council held two meetings, appointed a host of internal positions and approved roughly $387,000 for four hires requested by Selma Mayor James Perkins Jr.

The council held its organizational meeting, mandated by law, Tuesday.

By a 6-3 vote, the council elected Ward 3 Selma City Councilman Clay Carmichael to serve as President Pro-Tem, which means he would take on oversight duties in the absence of Selma City Council President Billy Young.

Ward 8 Selma City Councilman Michael Johnson was nominated for the position, but cast his vote in favor of Carmichael – returning council members Sam Randolph and Jannie Thomas, along with Ward 6 Selma City Councilman Atkin Jemison, voted against Carmichael.

“Even in that…we’re still working together,” Young said later. “There aren’t any hard feelings in that sense. We took that vote and now we’re moving on.”

Where city positions under the council’s appointment powers are concerned, Young said the council opted to keep current workers in place on an interim basis for the sake of “continuity of city services” and will make appointments at a later date.

The council also approved the following members to lead various council committees:

  • Thomas will chair the Public Buildings and Revitalization Committee;
  • Young will chair the Educational Committee;
  • Jemison will chair the Recreation and Tourism Committee;
  • Young will chair the Public Safety Committee;
  • Ward 2 Selma City Councilwoman Christie Thomas will chair the Administrative Committee;
  • Johnson will chair the Capital Equipment, Maintenance and Safety Committee;
  • Carmichael will chair the Public Works and General Services Committee;
  • Ward 1 Selma City Councilman Troy Harvill will chair the Children and Family Committee;
  • Ward 4 Selma City Councilwoman Lesia James will lead the Selma Youth Ambassadors;
  • All council members will be part of the Finance Committee;
  • Randolph will chair the Community Development Committee.

Two days after its organizational meeting, the council gathered to “hear the immediate needs of the mayor,” Young said, and ended up approving roughly $387,000 for four positions – a Human Resources Department director, an Executive Assistant for the mayor’s office, an Assistant Director for the Planning and Development Department and a director of Code Enforcement.

“After much discussion between the council, the mayor and the treasurer, the council did agree to give the mayor those immediate requests he had to fill positions he needed to fill,” Young said, noting that the council voted unanimously on all of Perkins’ requests.

Perkins, whose home was damaged by gunfire over the weekend, could not be reached for comment.