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City Council can’t come to decision on plan

The Hartselle City Council may decide tonight whether it will support a strategic plan developed by the Alabama Communities of Excellence program, which includes a strategy to promote the sale of alcohol.

Only four of the five members were present at the city council’s work session Monday night, which was attended by a large crowd of residents. Most of the audience members were there to express their opposition to the alcohol language being included in the plan.

Council President Kenny Thompson said the council will not vote on the issue unless all five are present.

Council members Don Hall and Bill Smelser have voiced opposition to the plan with the alcohol sales language included. Council members Mark Mizell, Tom Chappell and Thompson have not said whether they support the plan as is during a public open meeting.

It takes three votes to pass the plan or make revisions to the plan.

Regardless of what the council decides on the strategic plan, Thompson said the city cannot actively call for a referendum on the issue.

“We can’t make the city go wet,” Thompson said. “We can’t put it on the ballot ourselves. The only way you can put it on the ballot is if a petition is turned in to the city.”

City Clerk/Controller Rita Lee explained to the large audience Monday night that a petition that must have signatures of registered voters totaling 30 percent of the number that voted in the last municipal election.

“Once the petition has been turned in and the names have been verified, the city council must pass a resolution to put it on the ballot,” Lee said. “The council must put it on the ballot according to state law.”

The council will also consider the following items at its meeting tonight:

  • Ordinance 1362 – Annexation – Indian Hills Road (Colvin) (Introduction only)
  • Ordinance 1363- Zoning – Indian Hills Road (Colvin) (Introduction only)
  • Request for Parade Permit – Kiwanis Club Annual Christmas Parade
  • Accept/Reject bids for vehicle for Fire Department
  • Budget Transfer request – Fire Department
  • Accept/Reject bids for vehicles for Police Department
  • Acceptance of revised Volunteer Firefighter’s list
  • Discuss contract with RDS for business license discovery
  • Budget Adjustment – 7% Gasoline Fund – 2011 paving invoices
  • Request for 2012 Parade Permits for Hartselle Area Chamber of Commerce

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