WADLEY – At Monday’s meeting of Wadley Town Council, the council members approved an item of business that they regretted having to do.
The monthly rate for sanitation services from AGL will increase by $1.50 starting June 1. This means residential service will increase from $15 to $16.50 and will have an additional fuel surcharge that will vary each month.
“We have no choice,” said Mayor Donna McKay. “They have gone up on us, and we have to go up. It’s due to the economy and higher fuel prices.”
After a brief discussion, Councilman Jim Hall spoke up, “Unfortunately, I will make a motion to approve the increase.”
Councilman Michael Brown seconded and the vote was unanimous. McKay added, “I hope times will get better, and we won’t have to have another increase.”
Interim Police Chief Cory Ligon addressed the council about the shortage of police officers in the town. Ligon assumed the interim position following the resignation of former chief Tyler Murphy.
Ligon said the sheriff’s department is helping to cover shifts on a voluntary basis, and the town is compensating the deputies. During the period of April 18-23, the town paid the sheriff’s department some $1,700.
The chief said the reason the town is losing officers is because other towns are paying so much more. The hourly rate of pay for Wadley officers is $16.50 per hour, and neighboring towns are starting officers at $17 and $18. The mayor and council agreed to discuss this matter further at a later meeting, but all agreed there has to be adjustments in pay.
In other business, the council:
- Approved a resolution for the municipal water pollution annual report.
- Approved the annual back-to-school sales tax holiday July 15-17.
- Approved the employment of three summer workers at a rate of $9 per hour.
- Approved Juneteenth for Monday, June 20, as a holiday in line with the federal holiday.
- Discussed repayment of education fees from a former police officer who has left the department.
- Acknowledged the town being awarded the Gold Risk Management Award for a loss ratio below 5 percent.
- Acknowledged a letter written to the family of Larry Howard who passed away recently. Howard was a former school resource officer.
The next council meeting is scheduled for Monday, June 6, at 5 p.m. at town hall.