Tension high in Crowder over emergency payment

Published 12:34 pm Wednesday, July 24, 2019

By Myra Bean

There was some leftover tension between the Crowder Mayor and some members of the Board of Aldermen over an emergency situation which happened in the town during the month of June.

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One day in June, the water just cut off. Mike Hankins, public works director was on vacation and unavailable. Bernard White was called in and he fixed the problem the same day.

The problem is White was called to fix the problem and Mayor Tommie Dorris was not notified until after the fact. White charged the city $125 for mileage.

Dorris tabled the issue of paying White until board attorney William Sanders could be at the meeting. Sanders was on vacation and unavailable.

Board members Russell Cox and Darron Washington maintain Dorris did not table the issue correctly. Sanders agreed that Dorris did not table the issue correctly but maintained the mayor is charged with the day-to-day operations of the Town of Crowder.

Since hiring White on a contractual basis had only been mentioned in the May meeting, Dorris contends he needed advice and direction from Sanders on whether or not it was legal to pay White.

Cox said Dorris did not want to pay White. Dorris told him, “That’s a lie.”

In the end, after Sanders said the Mayor was right in seeking legal advice, the board voted for the Mayor to sign the check for $125 and pay White.

The board will take up whether to hire and who to hire in case Hankins will be absent again at a later meeting.

In other board business, Police Chief Willie Harris reported they had a case of child molestation reported on the Quitman County side.

There was discussion on what to do with vicious stray dogs that come in people’s yard. Harris told them they had the right to protect themselves, the elderly and children if dogs attack.

Crowder does have a leash law and also a law that says that unleashed animals must be behind a fence in the back yard.

The City of Leland and even Tupelo will take stray dogs, Dorris said.

Harris said that any citizen who sees stray dogs can come to the office and sign an affidavit.

Back to School Rally

There will be a Back-to-School Rally, Saturday, Aug. 3, hosted by the city for local students. Approximately 50 backpacks with supplies will be given away.

Elmore Strip of Land

A Mr. Elmore owns property which is on two streets. Between the property is a strip of land that belongs to the city. Elmore wants to buy that strip to put it all under homestead. He was told by the Tax Assessor’s office that if he bought the strip from the city that part could go under the Homestead but the other side could not because it is on another street.

Public Comments

Tom Brown’s dad, Robert Brown Sr., bought 26 burial plots in the city but he cannot get in touch with the people who have control of the cemetery now. He was told to contact Jeremy Moore. His dad paid Mayor J.O. Wood in full for the plots in 1969.

Wendy Snyder, volunteer fire department, reported there was one false fire reported in June. She also said her backyard is flooded and her water bill keeps going up. She said the meter is in the ground and other three feet of water covers it. She does not know how it is being read.

Each month she rounds up her water bill so her bill should be less and not more each month, she told aldermen.

Citizens were complaining about a man on Dawn St. who plays his radio so loud that their windows were vibrating. One person called dispatch and no law enforcement showed up. Then five people called and law was sent.

Signs on Buildings

Dorris said they needed to add to their order a sign for the new building to put either Maintenance Building or Public Works. He was told he did not need a motion to add a building since an earlier motion already covers that.

The next board meeting is Thursday, Aug. 2.