NEWTON GROVE — The town board once again had to delay a final vote on the new Itinerant Merchant ordinance, this time due to needed approval from the State Bureau of Investigation on the background check portion of the ordinance.
Assistant town clerk Amanda Turner shared with the board that police chief, Frankie Harrell had informed her that in order to ask for a background check, the SBI would have to approve what specific information the ordinance would be asking.
“The SBI informed me that it would take several days for us to receive approval on the ordinance request. We can approve the ordinance without the background check information or approve the ordinance with the background check information and then amend either, or we can wait until we get the approval from the SBI,” asserted Turner.
Mayor Gerald Darden explained to the board that the ordinance was ready with the exception of the SBI input on the background check.
“We have made all the changes we have previously discussed but this part regarding the background check is something new that has just come up. I know we were hoping to have this ordinance in place by the first of the year but it is up to you now what we do in regards to the ordinance,” stated Darden.
Commissioner Steve Jackson said the board should approve it the correct way to begin; other board members agreed and the vote on the ordinance was postponed until next month’s meeting.
Town accountant Bobby Herring presented the 2012 Audit Report. Herring reported that the town had received a clean report. Herring presented a brief but detailed report showing that the town financial situation was in good shape and as compared to other peer group towns, the town was rated very high in their budgetary situation.
The mayor presented a proposal from South River Electric Membership Corporation regarding their generator program where the town would receive a $91 per month credit on its electric bill for the use of its generator during high usage times.
“This is a similar program that South River once had. However the amount of credit they are giving is not near as much as it was. We do have expenses related to the use of the generator and we have a service contract to ensure that they start when they are needed. I am not certain that the amount of credit they are offering will benefit the town in any way. At best it will be a wash from the expense we have and what they are offering,” explained Darden.
After discussion the matter the board voted not to participate in the program due to the town receiving nothing for participation.
All department heads reported that the various departments were operating in good order. The police chief reported that the radios had been installed and were being utilized by the department. Commissioner Jackson shared that some pump replacements were needed but would not be done until after the first of the year. Commissioner Gary Herring also shared that some improvements to the sewer system were needed and the repairs would begin in January.