By Rupert Howell
Thanks, but no thanks.
Eric “Buck” Harris will not be the new Sardis Police Chief but he wants to help to the extent he can until they find one.
That issue was taken up in a special called meeting Thursday afternoon when aldermen voted to hire officer Steve McClarty as interim chief. He is a part-time patrolman currently with Sardis and a full-time Panola County Deputy Sheriff having worked in both Sardis and Batesville Police Departments full-time previously.
Aldermen terminated their former chief and assistant chief during the first meeting of the new administration, July 5, naming Harris to the position.
Former chied Martin said the decision had worked out for the best. New opportunities had approached and he stated he had recently woken one morning feeling, “stress free.”
Harris said Wednesday morning, “It (the chief’s position) will require more time than I have to give. They need a full-time person where he can put his undivided attention to it to get it where it needs to be.”
Harris is an elected official serving as the First Court District’s Constable, owns an auto body shop and recently purchased an 18-wheeler, putting him into the trucking business.
That position was the only unfilled position with all other city employees rehired with the exception of the police chief and assistant. The former city clerk had recently resigned.
During Thursday’s meeting Sardis officials also hired another full-time and a part-time patrolman to fill positions.
Another recess meeting was set for Tuesday, July 18 during the original monthly meeting. That meeting will convene at City Hall at 5 p.m.