Before the Hollow Rock Mayor and Board of Aldermen meeting ended Jan.31, the town recorder had been unanimously hired as the town’s Certified Municipal Financial Officer (CMFO) and an alderman had resigned.
However, Recorder Sharon Mann’s pay for her new duties turned into a controversial issue among aldermen with Mayor Rob Woods having to break the tie with a yes vote. Alderman Angela Stockade, who has had surgery was not present.
Aldermen Susan Moon and Morris Rogers cast a no vote for the mayor’s suggested $18 an hour raise while alderman Bobby Brotherton and Vice Mayor Curt Lumley gave the issue a node of approval.
The mayor suggested the raise since the recorder recently passed her last test in order to become a CMFO. It’s a state law that a municipality must have a CMFO to ensure competence in the handling of municipal funds and the protection of public moneys.
Former mayor Tim Runions, who is a CMFO, had previously been hired by the town for this duty.
In support of his suggested $18 an hour, Wood told what other towns are paying their CMFO’s per hour. In the other towns: McKenzie, $21.95; Huntingdon, $25; Atwood, $21.15; and Trezevant, $20.
“That’s what the rest of the county is doing,” said Woods. “Besides being the CMFO, she’s the town recorder and office manager.”
Runions will remain on as an assistant and will be paid $100 a month.
“Why do we need him?” questioned Rogers.
If Mann should get sick or unable to work, someone would have to come, and it would cost $1,000 to $1,500, the mayor said.
“We’d be crazy not to, for what Tim’s charging,” said the mayor.
Lumley praised Mann for the outstanding job she has done while serving as town recorder.
Moon said it was her understanding that $17 an hour had been agreed upon.
Brotherton, who made the motion for $18 an hour, also had words of praise for Mann, noting she does a lot for the town.
The mayor said he had been talking to the Hollow Rock-Bruceton director of schools about possibly having a high school senior working at city hall through a cop-op program. He also said he was thinking about hiring an extra person for the water department.
In other matters, fire chief Brotherton said it had been a busy month for the fire department. There have been four structure and one vehicle fires. The structure fires were at 35 Jessie Lane, Huntingdon; 28914 Broad St.; 1040 Pardue St.; and 50 Main St., He said it had been a good trip to Michigan to get the fire department’s C-800 Ford rescue truck the town recently purchased at a cost of $12,500.
The mayor said the town’s water was cut off an hour due to a water leak Jan. 27 on Seminary Street. Helping out with directing traffic were himself, Brotherton, Rogers and Jason Moon. Traffic had to be shut down on Highway 114 for awhile.
Horses that are being kept on Adell Street illegally were mentioned. It was pointed out that they were moved for a while, but were back. Town attorney Butch Maddox said that a citation could be issued each day.
As the meeting was about to conclude, Rogers offered his resignation as an alderman.
Quoting Thomas Payne he said: Lead, follow or get out of the way.
“I think my usefulness is not needed,” he said. “I don’t feel like I have an active roll.”
He said that he had served as a Benton County Commissioner before moving to Hollow Rock and that he served on different boards and committees while in that position.