City of Valley adjusts to rising costs

Published 8:00 am Wednesday, March 23, 2022

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VALLEY — The City of Valley is having to deal with rising costs these days. At Monday’s meeting of the city council, a resolution was approved to purchase new traffic lights at a higher than expected cost. The new traffic lights will be installed at the intersection of Burney Road and Fob James Drive. Barney Road is under construction and will connect Fob James with 55th Street. The city owns the site and is planning to have it developed as an industrial or commercial area.

The traffic lights will be purchased from Floyd Service Company, Inc. for $97,125. Floyd is the single source for the type of traffic arm and signal being sought.

Mayor Leonard Riley said the purchase had been delayed to see if the city could get a lower price.

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“We wasted three weeks,” Riley said. “They went up $18,000.”

While the city may have been burned on that purchase, they may be getting a break on the coming project at Exit 79 off I-85. The cities of Valley and Lanett along with Chambers County are partnering with the state on some lighting improvements at the interchange and along both lanes of the interstate from the state line to the new welcome center.

Valley’s share of the expense came in much higher than expected, but the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) has agreed to take on that additional cost. A company from Carrollton, Georgia will be doing the work.

District 2 Council Member Randall Maddux was back at a council meeting after an extended absence due to surgery. He’s lost a lot of weight but appeared glad to be back for a meeting.

“I want to thank everyone for their prayers,” Maddux said. “That’s what has me back here.”

“We want to keep you on the council for a long time to come,” Riley said, a comment that was met with a chorus of “A-mens!” from fellow council members.

“We have all been praying for Randall, and will continue to do so,” said Council Member Henry Cooper. “We hope you continue to get stronger.”

The council suspended the rules and adopted on first readings ordinances to sell some city-owned property in the River View community, to revise an ordinance in regard to EMS service and to renew a franchise agreement for WOW! to provide cable and internet service in the city.

In one ordinance, the city agreed to sell several lots along School Street and on both sides of the CV Railway Trail near its southern terminus to Tommy L. Rogers for $16,11150. In another ordinance, the city agreed to sell to Rogers another lot on School Street for $742.53.

In 2014, the city council approved an ordinance naming Valley EMS as the primary responder to all 911 or ambulance calls for all emergency and non-emergency calls in the city. Four years later, the city contracted with the East Alabama Water, Sewer and Fire Protection District. A city-run EMS service was phased out at that time. The ordinance that was unanimously approved on Monday states that East Alabama is the exclusive provider for all 911 or ambulance calls of a medical or non-medical nature in the city. This excludes a private service from operating in Valley. The ordinance also authorizes the mayor to designate an EMS director for the purpose of administering the ordinance.

The WOW! renewed franchise agreement is 24 pages in length. It’s for the next 10 years and spells out the grant of authority and its provisions, construction standards, design provisions, service provisions, operation and administrative provisions, financial and insurance provisions, circumstances that could result in the franchise being revoked, and the protection of individual rights.

Valley Parks and Recreation Director Laurie Blount told the council that a tournament had taken place this past weekend at the Sportsplex. It was a limited event with 11 teams competing on two of the five fields. Wet grounds are a problem that will hopefully clear up by the time the major tournaments take place this spring and summer. A major senior tournament will be taking place in April.

Blount asked Valley residents to keep Clean Up Valley Day in mind. It will be taking place on Saturday, April 23. Volunteers are being urged to turn out at the Community Center by 8 a.m. that morning to join with a group to pick up litter along designated city streets. Volunteers who sign up by April 20 will receive a free biscuit. You must have your own transportation. Gloves and trash bags will be provided.

Electronic recycling will be taking place at the Farmers’ Market Pavilion from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. EDT on Friday, April 22 and Saturday, April 23. The shred-it truck will be there from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, April 23.

Extra trucks will be picking up household garbage the week of April 18. Extra trucks will be picking up yard waste the next week.

Public Works Director Patrick Bolt told the council that the recent wet conditions had limited what his department could do in recent days. Some of the personnel in his department had been taking safety courses in Auburn recently. On April 4, Valley Public Works will be hosting a course on trench safety.

“It’s been hard to get anything done because it’s been so wet,” he said, “but we have gotten some needed work done on Morgan and Jefferson streets in Fairfax.”

Council Member Jim Clark thanked the men from Public Works for helping out with a Valley Tree Board tree distribution this past Saturday morning at city hall.

“The Tree Board asked me to express their condolences to anyone who arrived late and didn’t get a tree,” Clark said. “It was really cold and windy that morning, and the distribution went really fast. Everyone wanted to get out of that cold weather.”

The council unanimously approved an eight-item consent agenda. These resolutions included:

4declared as surplus property several items from Valley Parks & Recreation including a golf cart, Mule and two indoor basketball goals;

4approved a wholesale beer and wine license for Allstate Beverage Company, Montgomery;

4approved a budget amendment in the amount of $3,000 that will allow the Valley Arts Council to sponsor an art show recognizing local artists at Valley Community Center;

4authorized Mayor Riley to be a voting delegate for the city at an upcoming meeting of the Alabama League of Municipalities;

4redeemed some property on 19th Avenue for Tanya Floyd;

4declared as surplus property a generator and motor that’s no longer needed by the Public Works Department;

4accepted bids to sell a 1988 F150 Ford pickup truck for $500 and a two-seater golf cart with battery and charger for $500 (Dorothy Oliver was the high bidder on both items) and

4permitted the consumption of alcoholic beverages during the Wild Turkey Federation Banquet to be held at the Community Center on Friday, March 25.