Ken Dodson appointed Vice Mayor

Shaina Copeland/OCN screen shot

Alderman Kelly Coleman, at right, makes a motion to appoint Alderman Ken Dodson, at left, as Vice Mayor.

By Dewain E. Peek,

OCN Editor

Ken Dodson was appointed Vice Mayor during the Monday, Aug. 5 monthly Livingston Mayor and Board of Aldermen meeting.

Before the passing of Vice Mayor Bill Winningham, Rex Dale was selected to serve the remainder of his alderman term in a called meeting in which Winningham resigned his seat on the Board of Aldermen, but who would serve in the vice mayor position was not addressed.

“Mr. Winningham held down the position for many, many years,” Mayor Curtis Hayes said.

Alderman Kelly Coleman nominated Alderman Ken Dodson for vice mayor, and Alderman Chris Speck seconded.

On the vote, Aldermen Dodson, Dale, Speck, and Coleman voted yes, Alderman David Langford voted no, and Alderman Ronald Dishman abstained.

Alderman Langford asked for two pay scale adjustments – that the garbage truck driver pay be made the same as heavy equipment operator and that a worker on the trash truck who was hired just before the new pay scale was approved be moved up to the beginning pay.

Langford said the driver has been with the city for about 26 years.

“I just think he was left out,” Langford said.

The other one, he said, is being paid $12 an hour, but starting pay is now $13 on the pay scale.

Langford made a motion that the garbage truck driver be placed at the same pay as heavy equipment operators and that the other worker be brought up to the $13 per hour beginner’s pay.

Alderman Dishman seconded the motion.

Alderman Langford pointed out that if the worker, who is currently making $12 per hour, were to quit today and then be rehired tomorrow, he would then start out at $13 per hour.

Alderman Coleman asked Street Department Supervisor Wayne Peek for verification of this discrepancy.

“He’s making $12,” Peek confirmed.

Alderman Dale asked, “If he’s a new employee, does he start at $13?”

And Mayor Hayes answered, “He would start at $13 now that the pay scale is in effect.”

Alderman Dodson asked, “He just got skipped because of timing?”

“That’s right,” Mayor Hayes said.

Alderman Langford said, “He fell between the cracks.”

When asked, Peek said he would recommend the pay changes for the two employees.

On the vote, Aldermen Dodson, Langford, Dale, Speck, Coleman, and Dishman all voted yes.

Second and final reading of Ordinance 2019-7-1 was approved to rezone Linder property located at 537 Jamestown Highway from C1 to R1.

Alderman Coleman asked for an update on Carr Avenue paving.

Mayor Hayes informed the aldermen that the project has been let out for bid, and that the bids would be opened on Friday, Aug. 23. The bids call for the project to be completed in two months.

Mayor Hayes said the preparation has cost about $60,000 of the $500,000 borrowed for the project.

He said the bids would be brought before the City Council for approval on Monday, Sept. 9, because the first Monday in September will be Labor Day.

“In the event that it goes over the allotted amount, then we’ll have to make some cuts somewhere to these streets.”

Alderman Coleman noted that Carr Avenue would still take priority.

Ray Evans gave an update on Downtown Revitalization.

He said a CDBG grant in the amount of $100,000 for façade improvements has been applied for, as well as a TDOT grant.

Evans also gave an update on the multimodal access grant and then turned the lectern over to representatives of Kimley Horn, who then presented a slide show of areas that will receive updated or new sidewalks.

One of the changes noted was to add sidewalks in front of Winningham Hardware to “regulate the access” where the parking lot opens onto the road.

Another change calls for the addition of new sidewalks next to planters that line the road along the Broad Street parking lot of First National Bank.

An update on water projects was given by Greg Davenport of J.R. Wauford & Company, who then asked for a resolution to award low bidder W&O Construction both Contract 1901 sewer pumping stations and repairing a collapsed sewer line, at $970,834, and Contract 1902 Hilham water line improvements at $1,328,637, as well as to approve the engineering services agreement with J.R. Wauford & Company.

“The bottom line is that the bids underran the budget by just over $800,000,” Davenport said.

The City Council voted to adopt the resolution, then Davenport asked that a contract be approved with Rye Engineering PLC for leak detection in the city. The cost will be $24,500.

Alderman Dishman asked if the leak detection included the whole county, and Davenport said it would not.

“The plan for Monroe and Hilham is to turn the booster stations off at midnight and record the tank levels between midnight and 4 a.m.,” Davenport said.

This would be during hours that few people would be using water.

“And that will give us an approximation of what the true leakage is in those areas,” Davenport said. “We believe the majority of the problem is downtown, in Livingston proper, but we are going to check the outlying areas.”

Hiring Rye Engineering for leak detection was approved.

Mayor Hayes announced that a work session with Barge Designs is set for 5 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 22 for an update on flood mitigation.

The meeting adjourned.