Drama continues at city hall as the mayor and the council continue to resist each other. After the mayor declared that some of the “motions were not proper” the council disagreed and actually voted to go into executive session while the mayor continued on with the next items. Once the council had moved out of the chambers the city attorney had to stop the mayor by telling him that there was no quorum. After a long closed session, the council quickly approved all of the remaining items, including the ones restoring Dean Carrell and Teri Murdock.
Stephanie Wilson gave up her time to Elmerie Bell. Joan Grabowski referenced Item N on the agenda and admonished the council for writing it up. Elmerine Bell’s comments were concerning the poor road quality on Harris Street. Her full comment is attached.
John Droll spoke about Item L, the formalization of complaint form, and suggested that the form have a due date for a response to the citizen.
Chief Hill reported on the Police Department. The Italy Police Department (IPD) participated in the warrant roundup, where in two weeks the IPD was able to collect $39,000 in warrants and fees. Chief Hill wanted to thank all involved for their hard work in making the operation a success.
Chief Hill then reported on the crime stats for this year and stated that they are the same as last year’s.
Chief Hill then started to discuss another item, but the mayor suddenly stopped him from discussing this next item.
The city works department reported 560 work orders and 4 main breaks. A .73 water loss was reported this month and it was reported that the new water meters were making a big difference.
Mrs. Cockerham reported sales tax revenue of $31,164.52 which is down by 1.83% from last year.
Item I was to discuss a game room, but Mrs. Hall did not show to discuss.
Item J was a change order amounting to $7,350 for Gracon Construction, Inc. for the construction of the water tank. Richards made the motion and Guthrie seconded it. The motion passed with a 4-1 vote. Councilman Frank Jackson voted against the motion.
Chief Hill covered Item K: Tier 1-Partial Exemption Racial Profiling Report
Item L was a product of last week’s workgroup. It was pointed out that there is a 5 business day due date for the resolution.
After the mayor declared that some of the “motions were not proper” the council disagreed and actually moved to go into executive session while the mayor continued on with the next items. Once the council had moved out of the chambers, the city attorney had to stop the mayor by telling him that there was no quorum.
After executive session, Item L was quickly and unanimously passed. Guthrie made the motion and Utley seconded it.
Item M was quickly and unanimously passed. Perkins made the motion, Richards seconded it.
Item N is an ordinance that brings in new city personnel policies. The city attorney informed the council that this was the product of the workshop last week. It was unanimously passed, Guthrie made the motion, and Jackson seconded it.
Regarding the terminations of Dean Carrell and Teri Murdock that were discussed in executive session, Guthrie suggested that they vote on both items together. Guthrie made the motion and Jackson seconded that both employees be reinstated effective March 4th. Motion passed unanimously.
Bruce Utley thanked the citizens
Richards thanked the city employees for their good work. There were some bad leaks this month, and he said that they did a good job repairing them.
Perkins, Jackson and Guthrie had no comments.
These are the mayor’s comments from the meeting:
“Councilman Jackson, you say that you love this community and that you don’t have a problem with me and are on the same agenda as me, but you continually try to undermine my authority as Mayor. You have even stated that if you were still Mayor, you wouldn’t want what is going on to happen to you.”
“Councilman Guthrie, you have stated numerous times that you want to do what is right for the City of Italy, yet you continue to undermine myself and my authority. You do not listen to citizen’s concerns. Over the past year I have received nothing but a pushback from you on every decision I have made. You have no consideration for the citizens of Italy. If you continue with these council members, this city will not move forward. The community deserves to hear opinions from all councilmen on all matters.
“In reference to my Department Heads; Diron Hill, Terri Murdoch and Dean Carroll. You constantly conspire to undermine my authority and are rude to citizens of the City of Italy. You have maintained a constant hostile working environment to try to force out employees of the city that want to do the right thing. As Mayor I want to stop this behavior and place the right people in the right positions so that the City of Italy can move forward.”
“I was elected by the people of the city of Italy and entrusted with the position as Mayor, and as such, should be allowed to lead this community into the future. I was elected and I am doing everything I can to do what I can as Mayor.”