Portion of mill property annexed

Published 5:45 pm Thursday, February 28, 2019

VALLEY — On Monday, the Valley City Council annexed a portion of the former Fairfax Mill property into the city, approved $10,000 donations to the East Alabama Food Bank and the Chambers County Circle of Care Center for Families, and awarded timber-cutting bids on some recently-purchased property.

The annexed land is the parking lot across from Fairfax Elementary School. It’s now owned by the Chambers County Board of Education and was not included in the city’s 1980 incorporation because it was in an industrial park at the time.

The council suspended the rules and adopted on a first reading a petition to have the land annexed.

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In another unanimous vote, the council approved an eight-item consent agenda which included the donations to the Food Bank and the Circle of Care. Both organizations are seeking larger buildings to accommodate a fast-growing trend for their services. Located in Auburn, the East Alabama Food Bank services a seven-county area including Chambers County. At the Thursday work session, Food Bank Director Martha Henk told the council that the food bank was having to turn down two truckloads of food every week due to lack of space. This wouldn’t be happening with a larger space building that’s being acquired. Food Bank clients include the Christian Service Center, Valley Haven School, the Circle of Care, the East Alabama Mental Health group home, the Bread Basket Club, the Salvation Army of Lanett, A Vision to Feed, Faith Workers, Inc., Next Ministries and several local churches.

Circle of Care has the goal of relocating from its present location off Shawmut Circle to a vacant building in Valley Medical Park. Circle of Care Director Jonathan Herston told the council on Thursday that it will cost more than $380,000 to make the move but is confident of raising it through a combination of grants and fund raising.

The timber sale area is located between 55th Street and I-85. It’s divided into Tracts A and B with the bids being awarded to the companies making the highest offers on each tract. East Alabama Lumber Company will be cutting on Tract A and Baseline Forest Service on Tract B. East Alabama Lumber offered to do the work for $140,000 in 18 months and $166,000 if it goes over that.

Tract B is mostly hardwood saw timber. Baseline was the only bidder for this job and offered to do the work for $10,000.

The council approved a 30-year lease for Alabama Power, which has an office in the municipal complex near Valley Post Office. Alabama Power owns the building but the city owns the land.

The rent starts out at a flat rate of $500 a month and could go up to $583 a month toward the end of the lease.

The council declared nuisances and authorized abatements on properties located at 2310 38th Boulevard and 2408 31st Street.

Valley Parks and Recreation Director Laurie Blount said that Valley hosted a well-attended youth basketball tournament over the weekend. A total of 41 teams throughout east Alabama participated. VPR’s eight and under boys’ team won its bracket and will advance to the state tournament in Trussville.

She thanked the Valley Police Department for providing security at the many games played at many different sites in the city.

Valley will play host to a baseball tournament this weekend. Blount said that the registration period for spring sports ends on Tuesday, March 5.