Eutaw City Council holds routine meeting

Gloria Mobley shows soiled sheet she washed in City of Eutaw water, after a water line repair, without notice to flush out lines.

On Tuesday, March 25, 2023, the Eutaw City Council held its regular second meeting of the month. The Council handled routine business approving contracts related to street repairs, storm debris collection, and repairs to the City Park, off the Lock 7 Road.
The Mayor, four city council persons, the clerk, assistant clerk, and other city employees were present. Council member LaJeffrey Carpenter of District 2 was absent.
At the beginning of the meeting the Mayor, Council, and Legal Counsel held a forty-four-minute Executive Session (from 5:07 to 5:51 PM) to discuss the good name and character of city employees and legal matters.
When the Council returned to the public session, they received financial reports on the first five months of the fiscal year, from October 1, 2022, to February 28, 2023, a report on a franchise payment for 2023 by Alabama Power Company and a utility revenue collections report, prepared by Ralph Liverman, financial adviser.

The Council approved a payment of $10,100 to Jasper Means Construction Company for his work on Roberts Street. The Council also approved a contract with J&L Environmental and Tree Services for additional storm debris clean-up.

The Council also approved a contract with EOS Utility Systems from Mississippi to operate and monitor the city’s wastewater system. The company will work with city employees on maintaining the lagoon and wastewater pumping stations daily, while EOS will make weekly monitoring visits and sign off on reports to the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM).
The weekend of July 21-23, 2023, was approved as a “Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday”, for purchase of school clothes and supplies, exempt from sales taxes.

In other business:

• The Council approved letting of bids for repair of the City Park, at Lock 7 Road, from storm damage.

• Approved travel for city employees for training and per diem expenses for the Chief of Police to attend a Jefferson County Police and Sheriff’s Captain Development Program in Birmingham on March 29-31, 2023.
• Approved Mayor Johnson’s suggestion of three names to the State of Alabama for appointment to the County Board of Equalization. The three names submitted were James D. Powell, Tommy Armour, and Mary R. McInnis.

• Approved payment of bills and claims.

In the public comments section of the meeting, Gloria Mobley of West End, reported that she had washed her clothes the prior week, after the city restored water service, after repairing a leak. She said she did not realize there was a brown sediment in the water that ruined some of her clothes, towels, and sheets. Mobley asked for assistance from the City to purchase replacements for the items soiled in the wash, with city water.

The Mayor and Corey Martin, Water Operator, stated that there was nothing that the city could do for Ms. Mobley. Corey Martin insisted that he had sent out a “code-red” notice in that area of the city advising residents of the water problem. Mobley said that she never received the code-red call.

At the end of the meeting, Mobley showed a bag of clothes that she had washed three times, which were still soiled and looking beige not white.
Mobley was not satisfied with the response that she should have heeded the code-red and flushed out her lines before washing her clothes.

A knowledgeable observer of city business suggested that the City Council should have granted Mobley two- or three-months water service credit in exchange for the damage to her clothes and personal items

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