“Right now we’re trying to inventory everything,” Councilman Freddie Striplin said. He noted that some of the equipment thought to be missing has been located, but more will likely need to be purchased before the season begins. About 65 children are playing in the town’s youth football program this year.
At one time it was thought that the town was missing as much as $2,000 worth of football equipment, which had been stored in a room inside Town Hall. Mayor Alberta McCrory has said that two city employees and a church group had access to that room.
“I’ve got a man standing ready to help us with all this,” Striplin said, referring to a person he didn’t name who has agreed to help pay for the missing equipment once a list of needed items is made.
In an effort to improve the town’s appearance, Councilwoman Deneva Barnes will soon be making a list of town properties in need of cleanup. Letters will be mailed to those property owners asking them to bring the properties up to town code.
Related to that beautification effort, an abandoned water tower on a hill above town needs to be removed, and could make the town money if it can be sold for scrap metal, McCrory said. A company will soon inspect the tower to determine if its removal is worth that effort, she said.
In a move to learn from a neighboring community, McCrory asked the council to attend one of several strategic planning meetings being held this month by the city of Anniston. McCrory said Hobson City will be forming its own strategic plan in the future.
“We don’t have to do what they’re doing, but we have to do something,” McCrory said.
Prior to the close of the meeting, a man who did not identify himself spoke to the council about a problem he has in hearing council members speak during meetings.
“Every time I come to these meetings all I hear is mumbling,” said the man. “Why is there no microphone up there so we can hear what you’re saying?”
The man was referring to air conditioners in the room that can make it difficult to hear clearly when council members speak. Visitor seating is also back several dozen feet from the council table, which increases the problem.
“The audience has got to hear what you’re saying,” the man said, at times raising his own voice loudly. At one point he was told by council members to lower his voice.
After the man left, the council agreed to move the council table closer to visitor seating.
“And we can look at investing in a PA system,” McCrory said.
The next council meeting is scheduled for Monday, Sept. 23 at 6:30 at Town Hall.
Staff writer Eddie Burkhalter: 256-235-3563. On Twitter @Burkhalter_Star.