City hires part-time help

By PAT BROWN,

At the mid-month meeting of the Magee Board of Aldermen Mayor Dale Berry reported that anyone who has problems with street lights being out should call city hall to report the problem. 

Berry said poles can be identified by a number on them, or residents can give a street address to identify the location of non-functioning street lights. 

He also reported that   vagrants have been sleeping at the McNair Springs Park but said that the police are running them out of the park. 

He said the city has received a “Dear John Letter” from the Department of Corrections regarding  the closure of the corrections center.  Pine Lake Church has asked to lease the facility for $2,500 per month as a place for people who have been released from jail and have jobs but no place to live. 

The city took bids for Trustmark, Peoples Bank and PriorityOne Bank to serve as depositories for city funds for the upcoming year.  Bid amounts were not discussed because it was not listed on the agenda. 

The board approved spending $2,700 on a fireworks show in the 4th of July celebration. 

Alderman Patrick Brown updated the board on the old Magee Elementary project. Additional comments in that regard are the topic of this week’s column on the editorial page.  The board approved moving forward with Five County Child Development managing the Head Start program in Magee, but no vote was taken or objection was noted.   

The board discussed options for city garbage pickup.  The city does not have enough employees to run the routes, and the work center that was providing inmate workers has closed.  County labor is not available at all times as needed. 

Board members discussed reducing the number of days of residential pick up to once a week and possible reducing the number of days of commercial service. 

The city has decided to hire five new part-time employees, holding an emergency meeting on Monday of this week to make those hires.   They have also been able to get additional inmate help from the county through the state to help alleviate the problem of lack of labor. 

For the time being it looks as though the problem will be manageable.  The mayor said the extra labor will be used to play catch up in cutting grass and weed eating. 

The mayor reminded residents of what can and can not be picked up by city trucks limbs not tree logs can be pick up on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.  Debris on Thursdays and Fridays.  Leaves may not be bagged.   These materials must be separated. 

The city is considering offering on-line water payment.

The city is opening the splash pad the first Monday in June.  There will be a life guard on duty the cost is $5 per trip a season pass is available for $40 which is good for visits. 

The city approved the police upgrading the to generation five weapons and trading in old weapons.