Rainsville to hold public hearing

Monday, the Rainsville City Council approved to have a public hearing on Oct. 17, at 6 p.m. to discuss the possibility of hiring a building inspector.

Councilman Marshall Stiefel said in the work session he had mixed feelings about hiring a building inspector but thought having a hearing not to vote on hiring one but “to get some feedback and answer some questions” would be best.

“I had several different people in realty that’s told me that’s something that they are noticing a lot, so I wouldn’t have a problem myself hearing the pros and cons,” Councilman Brandon Freeman said.

According to Mayor Rodger Lingerfelt, the topic of an inspector is something that has been talked about every year. He said this year he just happened to run into a local who happens to do inspecting

“He would just do it as a contractor,” Lingerfelt said.

He said having the public hearing would be a good way to hear the positives and the negatives regarding the matter.

Councilman Bejan Taheri voiced his concerns regarding the matter stating he “just doesn’t want to open up a can of worms.”

In a phone interview with the Times-Journal, Lingerfelt said they are not going backwards with the inspections. “It’s going forward,” he sad. He said the inspections would pertain to “new houses, business, and could be for small businesses and some remodeling projects depending on the square footage.”

During the meeting, Stiefel said he had questions about the “whole thing” and thought letting the people on both sides of the issues speak would be helpful.

“If we have a hearing, we can have both sides [speak], and we can make an educated decision,” Stiefel said.

Lingerfelt said everyone has their own opinion, but with as much housing “going on” in the City of Rainsville, there could be possibly something getting missed.

“Then people are buying these houses, and they fall apart in 5 to 10 years,” he said.

According to Lingerfelt, the cities surrounding Rainsville, such as Fort Payne, Scottsboro, and Albertville, all have these inspectors.

“The reason they have those inspectors is to protect the citizens of their town/city, and that is what it’s about,” he said.

The council also approved the purchase of a front loader sanitation truck quoted at $279,461.28.

Lingerfelt said in the work session, the sanitation truck is something that they need, and the two older model trucks they have are “pretty well worn out.”

“They are staying in the shop all the time,” he said.

The council also heard updates from the following departments:

• Fire Chief Willimac Wright said they started their fire prevention with Cornerstone Christian Academy Friday and the library next week.

• Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Sandy Goff announced this year’s Trunk or Treat is Oct. 31 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and will be held at the Rainsville Farmers Market. Holiday Open House is coming up Nov. 8 and 9. Rainsville’s 60th Christmas parade will be Dec. 7 at 10 a.m.

• Kayron Guffey announced the Veterans Day Memorial would be held Nov. 11 at 10 a.m. at the Tom Bevill Enrichment Center with guest speakers Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill and House Majority Leader Representative Nathaniel Ledbetter.

The council also:

• accepted the minutes from the previous meeting on Sept. 30, 2019.

• accepted the street paving project CR-RES-19-01 at $293,780 paid to Wiregrass Construction.

• approved to hire Scott Baswell full-time at the Rainsville Fire Department with a start date of Sept. 19.

• approved to hire Alex Jose at the Rainsville Police Department with a start date of Oct. 16.

• approved to send Tara Wilkerson to the Human Resource Conference on Oct. 10 and 11.

• approved the placement of a fire hydrant on the north side between Cornerstone Christian Academy and the Northeast Alabama Agri-Business Center.

• approved the air-pack testing for the Rainsville Fire Department.

• approved to pay monthly bills.

An executive session was held that evening to discuss ongoing litigations. No action was taken.

The next council meeting is schedule for Oct. 21 with a workshop at 4:15 p.m. and regular session at 5 p.m.

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