Stanfield appointed to PCBOE
After Citizen press time last week, the Phenix City Council approved at its meeting Sept. 18 Todd Stanfield as the new Phenix City Board of Education member. Stanfield will finish out the remainder of the term left vacant by former board member John Donohue, who recently resigned for personal reasons. Councilman Arthur Day made a first nomination, for which the vote was split 3 in favor, 2 against (Day, Councilwoman Vickey Carter Johnson). Councilman Griff Gordy then nominated Stanfield, for which the vote was split again 3 in favor (Mayor Eddie Lowe, Gordy and Councilman Steve Bailey), 2 against.
In final comments as the meeting came to an end, amid other comments, Johnson said she wasn’t going to justify her vote, while Day said he realizes majority vote rules, however, he said there were four potential candidates for the position and he had a problem with some of the things that went on, which he declined to elaborate further on. Day also noted that in his personal opinion, it’s not fair that there are five representatives from District 1 and two from District 3 on the city school board. Day said he wasn’t angry, but “I will say what’s on my mind.”
Bailey said he personally always votes for the person he thinks is the best person for the job, regardless of where they live, shop, etc., and personally, he’d prefer for the person to be a registered voter.
City Manager Wallace Hunter said he’s glad Phenix City’s voters voted the way they did on the recent referendum: to have an elected school board. Referencing the way the process has been working — with city council appointing school board members — Hunter said, “It causes problems” and “confusion.” He also said that now that city school board members will be elected, every district will be fairly represented.
A new school board – filled by election by Phenix City’s voters – will occur two years from now.
In other highlights, the city council approved:
– the rescinding of four resolutions relating to a drainage issue on two lots in the Saddlebrook Subdivision. City Engineer Angel Moore explained the city decided to take a different approach and instead, focus on making a stormwater management facility there.
– a resolution accepting a quote for more traffic light equipment that will help the lights recognize a vehicle’s presence so as to turn the light different colors, etc. (the equipment is not related to red light cameras that take photos of stoplight offenders, council confirmed)
– a resolution authorizing an agreement for the city to get funds from a traffic safety program for law enforcement officers’ participation in special enforcement events like Click It or Ticket, Drive Sober of Get Pulled Over, etc.
– a resolution accepting a land and Lift Station on Riverchase Drive from Developer Michael S. Bowden and RCA LLC.
– a resolution authorizing an agreement for professional engineering services for Summerville Road Sanitary Sewer to Glenwood School in an amount of no more than $156,762. Assistant City Manager Steve Smith said the infrastructure protects the city’s service district up in the Summerville Road area. “This is our growth area,” he said, “and we need to protect that area” — noting there are also two other areas of growth around the city. He noted this new infrastructure is intended primarily to “protect” the city’s north service area from outside entities.
Also, Johnson reviewed with The Citizen the concerns of 12 to 15 citizens who attended her town-hall style meet and greet event before the city council meeting. She said citizens discussed various topics, including the specific desire for a pool in District 2 and also a desire for a community youth center there too – as well as mitigating crime. Job growth was another topic and the need for higher paying jobs availability. Johnson said the 2020 Census also was discussed as well as a PowerPoint presentation regarding the city’s achievements over the past several years. Johnson said the meeting went well, and, “I’m as accessible as I can be.”