New Brookhaven board in place

Published 5:00 am Thursday, July 5, 2001

A new administration Tuesday looked to resume an old project as aldermen got their first glimpse of a revised city annexation plan.

After city officials were sworn in earlier, Mayor Bill Godbold gave aldermen a copy of a new proposed annexation that is smaller than one looked at last year. Information on size, population,racial makeup and other demographic data was not available.

“We’ll discuss it when we can get the people down,” said Godbold, who is beginning his sixth term.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

New city officials sworn in Tuesday included Arlustra “Pap” Henderson as chief of police; Les Bumgarner, alderman-at-large, and Bob Massengill, Ward 4 alderman.

Returning officials who were sworn in included City Clerk Iris Rudman, Tax Collector Pat Duckworth and aldermen Dorsey Cameron,Ward 1; Terry Bates, Ward 2; the Rev. Jerry L. Wilson, Ward 3; TomSmith, Ward 5 and John E. “Buddy” Allen, Ward 6.

Depending on the schedule of annexation consultants MichaelBridge and Michael Slaughter, Godbold said the city expansion plan could be discussed at the next board meeting or during a special meeting. The mayor added this was his first city expansion, and he encouraged board members to take in enough area to meet future city needs.

“If we’re going to do it, let’s do it,” the mayor said.

The new plan would take in less overall area than a previous proposal that covered 36 square miles. Areas south and west of the current city are included in the new plan while some areas north of the city, such as much of the Brignall community, are not.

Despite consultants’ belief that the old plan was “too big” and”wouldn’t fly,” Godbold was still supportive of his suggestion for city expansion.

“Mine will satisfy us for the next 30-40 years,” Godbold said after the meeting.

Any annexation plan must be approved in chancery court. Public hearings on a plan would be part of the process.

In related activity, aldermen approved paying bills totaling$51,499 to Bridge and Slaughter and Engineering Associates for annexation study work.

Another back burner project getting renewed attention Tuesday night was a “through street” that would lead from Natchez Avenue toAlexander Junior High School. The project came up during TrafficSupervisor Jimmy Furlow’s discussion of county plans to replace railroad bridges, including the one over Warren Avenue.

“I’d rather it go where we first talked about it,” Godbold said in suggesting a replacement alternative to the current bridge location.

Godbold said the new road would go from the intersection ofSouth Jackson Street and Natchez Avenue to George Street. He said it would improve traffic flow for people trying to the junior high school.

“That’s one of the throughways I want to see put in there,” Godbold said.



In other new board activity, current Brookhaven ParksCommission member Graham Tempel was re-appointed for another termand local attorney Woody Breeland was named to the board to replaceformer commission member Bumgarner.

Tempel’s appointment was unanimous while Breeland waselected in a 4-3 vote. Citing park commission desires andBreeland’s activities with the recreation department, Bumgarnernominated the local attorney and was joined by Cameron, Bates andWilson in voting for him.

The previous board’s last meeting appointment of BobbyHarris was vetoed by Godbold. Boyce Bullock was nominated two weeksago, but his nomination was rejected.

Bumgarner complimented both Harris andBullock.

“I think a lot of them, but I’m committed to Woody,”Bumgarner said.

Ward 5 Alderman Tom Smith again nominated Bullock to thecommission, but his motion failed 3-4.


Regarding other new administration activity, current court,legal services and professional services personnel werere-appointed for another year. Saying his rate is the same as thelate Dick Stratton’s rate in 1990, City Attorney Joe Fernald saidhe would be asking to raise his hourly rate by $20, which wouldboost the fee from $90 to $110.

Godbold also recommended a salary increase for the municipalcourt judge. He said the judge was making less than the city’sprosecuting attorney.

“We’ll have to study it when we get to the budget,” Godboldsaid.

Bates, who is beginning his fourth term, was named mayor protem.

“He’s the senior alderman around this board,” Cameron said inmaking the nomination.

Godbold had a few words of advice for Bates, who replaced thedeparted Ward 4 Alderman John Roberts.

“Don’t stab me in the back. You’re supposed to be working withme,” the mayor told Bates.

Aldermen also accepted several police department promotionrecommendations from Henderson. Former Det. Nolan Jones was namedassistant police chief while former Capts. Roger Wilson and BobbyBell were named detectives for the department.


Several streets are in line to get some paving in the future,Furlow said. Aldermen authorized Furlow and Street DepartmentSuperintendent Jimmy Griffin to designate streets to be done whenthe paving crew comes Monday.

“We need to do the streets that need to be done,” Furlow said inrecommending against a one street per ward suggestion.

Street work will depend on the amount of funds available.

Aldermen will allow firefighter Maurice Townsend to return towork in about two weeks following a calf injury he sustained at theState Fire Academy. Townsend withdrew after the injury and, undercity policy, is required to reimburse the city for $276 as apro-rated share of the academy costs.

Townsend Tuesday questioned why he had to pay the funds. FireChief Paul Cartwright said it was city policy and Townsend wouldhave to be re-scheduled for the academy.

Until he can return to work, aldermen delayed a decision onTownsend’s payment of the academy costs.

Cameron expressed concerns about Domino’s Pizza’s deliveryactivities. He said the business would deliver to the Loyd Stararea, but not to the Brignall community.

“It’s a little close to being discriminatory,” Cameron said.

Wilson, a former employee of Pizza Hut, indicated safetyconcerns in not delivering to some areas.

Aldermen asked Fernald to contact Domino’s officials about thesituation. Domino’s officials were unavailable for comment.

At the end of the meeting, aldermen went into executive sessionto discuss pending litigation.

Fernald said the session was to update new board members on sixpieces of litigation in which the city is currently involved. Noaction was taken after the closed meeting.