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Wadley residents plan to dispute town’s property ownership

WADLEY – At Monday’s meeting of Wadley Town Council, two residents addressed the council concerning who owns a small piece of property on Cooledge Street.

Wanda Weaver and Randy Weaver were on the agenda to speak at the meeting. Mr. Weaver first addressed the council concerning the condition of the pavement on Cooledge Street. Mayor Donna McKay told Weaver the town doesn’t have the money to repave the street but would have the maintenance department to patch the potholes.

Second, Weaver questioned why some residents are made to clean up their property and some aren’t. McKay said she hoped everybody would clean up their property.

Lastly, Weaver said he was there to help with a problem on property ownership. The property in question is on approximately one-third of an acre on Cooledge Street. According to McKay, the property, with a sewer pumping station on it, was purchased by the town many years ago from Plantation Patterns. “This was way before my administration,” said McKay. “The sewer pumping station was put there in 2009.”

Mrs. Weaver said she and her husband bought the property from Jim Cleveland and have been paying taxes on it. “I have the deed from the courthouse, and the tax office says I own it. If the town owns it, I won’t be paying taxes on it anymore.”

McKay said she has a deed that shows the town owns the property. “I don’t care what you got, I’m trying to get my business in order before I die so my kids won’t be fighting over what I have,” said Mrs. Weaver. “I’m not going to be pushed over. Just because I don’t have the money don’t think I won’t fight for what’s mine. Y’all go ahead and get you a lawyer, and I’ll get me one too.”

Councilmember Mattie Staples asked if the property is worth arguing over and Weaver said yes. In the end, McKay said she would contact Town Attorney Chad Lee and ask him to do a title search. Mrs. Weaver said she is going to do the same thing with a different attorney.

Baptist church land ownership

In another matter of land ownership, John Hall addressed the council about land where Wadley Baptist Church is located. Hall said the church plans to build a youth activity building but has recently found out the land where the Baptist church is located belongs to the town.

“I am here to speak on behalf of the deacons concerning the land where our church is,” said Hall. “We want to build a new facility, but we want to be legal about it and not build on land that doesn’t belong to us.” According to Mayor McKay, the land does belong to the town and has since the early 1900s.

Hall told the council the church would have the land surveyed at the church’s cost and asked the council to give a clear title with a quit claim deed. “We are looking at spending around $250,000 on the building,” said Hall. He said the church has a large youth program and needs the building. It was agreed by the council the town would sign the deed after it is surveyed. Councilman Hall abstained from the vote by the council.

In other business the council:

  • Heard a presentation from Aaron Walker of Machen McChesney L.L.P. on the 2021 audit. The audit will be approved at the April meeting.
  • Approved a change in the personnel policy concerning vacation time.
  • Approved for Mayor McKay to attend the League of Municipalities convention.
  • Approved Mayor McKay as voting delegate for the League of Municipalities convention with Councilmembers Hall and Michael Brown being alternates.
  • Approved sponsoring a table at the Southern Union State Community College 100-Year Gala at a cost of $650.
  • Approved $1,200 for an ad in the At Home in Clay County Magazine that will feature Southern Union.
  • Approved to pay Marcia Houze $600 as manager of the farmer’s market.
  • Approved $7,488 for the purchase of brick dust for the town’s softball and baseball fields.
  • Approved a donation of $1,000 to Wadley Athletic Club for girls’ junior varsity sports.
  • Approved $2,000 for the removal of the canopy at the Perry building.

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