Heflin Duo

At a Heflin City Council work session and meeting Tuesday, City Clerk Shane Smith and Mayor Rudy Rooks (right) listen to a presentation.

HEFLIN — Heflin City Clerk Shane Smith gave the Heflin City Council a positive half-year budget update and characterized the city’s finances as “trending well right now.”

“Revenue is up, the majority of our tax revenue which is what we depend on to run day-to-day operations for the city which includes sales tax, property tax, business license and things like that,” Smith told the council during its work session Tuesday evening.

Smith said the city as a whole is doing good on expenses from the previous year.

“Expenses are down drastically, which is a good thing,” said Smith.

One area that Smith said he’s concerned about is the gas tax revenue, which is down $12,000 from this time last year.

“My concern is either somebody may not be paying correctly so I’m going to do some auditing of the gas, not the gas stores — our distributors — but the gas companies that pay to us,” said Smith.

Smith thought it could be due to the higher prices for gasoline this year compared to last year.

Smith said that sales tax revenue so far this year is up 60 percent from last year but the tobacco tax revenue is down.

“I assume people aren’t smoking as much,” said Smith.

During departmental reports, Heflin Fire Chief Jonathan Adams reported that the department had the following calls in April:

— Two structure fires

— One vehicle fire

— Several woods fires

— Eleven motor vehicle collisions

— One medical call

— Three tree and powerline calls

— One service call

Adams and Mayor Rudy Rooks talked about the tanker truck wreck on Interstate 20 at the 198 mile marker which drastically snarled traffic flow Monday morning.

Eastbound traffic was diverted in Oxford onto U.S. 78 to avoid the wreck, which created slow travel for motorists.

“As you all know, the interstate was blocked because of the semi wreck but they had to shut it down, westbound, when they rolled the truck over but to make sure nothing happened,” Adams said.

Rooks said the truck was carrying refrigerated liquid hydrogen, making for a dangerous situation, but he commended the various first responders who worked the wreck.

“Our guys were there, police department, Sheriff’s department, State Troopers — directing traffic — our Cleburne County EMA director Crystal Cavender was there,” Rooks said.

Tanya Maloney, Heflin’s economic developer, said that this Saturday there will be a spring cleaning and planting day for Main Street. Anyone interested needs to meet at 8:30 a.m. at City Hall.

Heflin police Chief A. J. Benefield reported this activity for the month of April:

— Five accident reports

— Closed out 15 cases by arrest

— 46 incident reports

— Issued 13 traffic citations and 167 warnings

— 1148 business checks

— Three presentations

Benefield said that the department will hold a firearms safety class for ladies in the next 5-6 weeks.

During the meeting the council unanimously approved a seven-cent gas tax purchase of $1,155 for the Perryman Bridge project.




​Staff writer Bill Wilson: 256-235-3562. On Twitter @bwilson_star.