Lanett City Council tackle several issues

Published 6:00 pm Tuesday, March 19, 2019


LANETT — On Monday, the Lanett City Council held a second reading and approved an amendment to update its cross-connection plan, approved resolutions to install two street lights on 21st Street SW, unanimously backed a resolution for the 2019 Back to School Sales Tax Holiday and heard presentations from Chambers County 9-1-1/EMA Director Jessica Yeager and Commissioner Sam Bradford.

The cross-connection plan relates to the Safe Water Drinking Act and is the city’s first update since 1989. It prohibits anyone from connecting into the city’s water pipes, exposing city residents to water of questionable quality.

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Alabama Power Company will be putting up the two new street lights in the West Shawmut neighborhood and the city will pay the power bill.

“It’s a darkened street, and elderly people live in the area,” Mayor Kyle McCoy explained.

The back-to-school sales tax holiday will take place from 12:01 a.m. on Friday, July 19 to midnight on Sunday, July 21.

Yeager has succeeded former 9-1-1/EMA Director Donnie Smith, who recently retired. She has been with the county department since 2006. She started as a dispatcher and has taken on many additional roles since then.

“I’m a big advocate for the local community,” she said. “I’d love to have a table at next year’s Christmas tree lighting event and talk to people about emergency preparedness.”

Commissioner Bradford talked to the council about the importance of Chambers County and the state of Alabama having a good census count in 2020.

“We need to have a good count next year,” he said. “Alabama does not need to lose a congressman.”

Bradford said that Gov. Kay Ivey is urging each county in the state to have a Census Count Committee.

“We don’t need to wait until December to do this,” Bradford said. “We need to get a thorough process going before then.”

Council Member Angelia Thomas asked the mayor why discrepancies existed with the utility bills city residents are paying. She said that some people living in 1,200-square-foot homes might be paying $200 a month for utilities and others living in smaller houses might be paying $700 to $800 a month.

“It all comes down to usage,” the mayor said. “The more you use, the more it will cost. Some people want their homes at 78 degrees while others are content with 65 degrees.”

Thomas said that people couldn’t help but think “something is going on” when there are wide gaps in the bills they receive.

“One month it’s $500, the next month $200 and the next month $700,” she said.

McCoy said the changing of the weather day-to-day could play a role.

“We’ve been having a unique winter,” he said. “On some days the temperature is in the seventies, and you don’t have to heat your home. The next week it gets down to freezing at night.”

McCoy said he wanted people to understand that what shows up on your meter when it’s read is what you will be billed.

“It comes down to usage,” he said. “It depends on the kilowatts you use.”

McCoy said the city had received its most recent audit and that it will be discussed at the first meeting in April.