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published on 12/19/2002

Official Minutes - Nov. 11th - Signal Mountan Town Council Meeting

Town Recorder

The Town Council of the Town of Signal Mountain held its regular monthly meeting on Monday, November 11, 2002, at 7:00 p.m. in the Town Hall. Those present were:

Mayor James H Althaus, Vice-Mayor William O. Leonard, Councilmember Rachel Bryant, Councilmember Steve Ruffin, Councilmember Robert E. White.

Also present: Town Manager Hershel Dick, Town Recorder Diana Campbell, Town Attorney Phil Noblett.
See list at bottom for additional people (Editor's note: no list attached. To view the list go to the Town Hall. PNS)

The Town Attorney called the meeting to order. He informed the Council and citizens that as the Town Attorney he must preside over the first matter for the evening. He explained that the Charter provides that the Council at its first meeting after its first regular election must elect from among its members officers of the Town who shall have the title of Mayor and Vice-Mayor, each of whom shall serve a term of two years. He noted that the Charter is silent on the method of electing the two offices but the Tennessee law requires that the elections must be by public vote, public ballot or public roll call. After a brief discussion a vote was taken on whether to elect the Mayor first. The voice vote was four in favor with Councilmember Ruffin abstaining.

Phil Noblett offered the prayer.

The Council then proceeded with nominations for Mayor. Councilmember White nominated James Althaus and Councilmember Leonard seconded the nomination. Councilmember Ruffin nominated Rachel Bryant and Councilmember Althaus seconded the nomination. The Recorder passed out ballots. Mr. Noblett instructed the Councilmembers to vote and sign the ballots. Mr. Noblett asked the Recorder to tally the votes and she stated that the votes were three votes for Councilmember Althaus and two votes for Councilmember Ruffin.

Next Mr. Noblett requested nominations for Vice-Mayor. Councilmember White nominated Councilmember Leonard. Mr. Noblett then noted that the position of Vice-Mayor according to the Charter is to act as the Mayor during the absence or disability of Mayor and if the office of Mayor becomes vacant then the Vice-Mayor shall become the Mayor and shall serve until the next general Town election. He further explained the office is for a two-year term the same as the office of Mayor. Then Councilmember
Page 2 – Minutes of Council Meeting, November 11, 2002

Bryant nominated Councilmember Ruffin. The Recorder passed out ballots for Vice-Mayor and then received the ballots after they were passed in. She stated there were three votes for Councilmember Leonard and two votes for Councilmember Ruffin.

Mr. Noblett then turned the meeting over to Mayor Althaus.

The Recorder called the roll.

The next item before the Council was the minutes of the October 14, 2002, regular Council meeting. Councilmember Bryant made a motion to approve the minutes. The Mayor seconded the motion and it passed unanimously.

The first resolution before the Council was “A RESOLUTION APPOINTING MEMBERS TO THE PERSONNEL COMMITTEE FOR THE TOWN OF SIGNAL MOUNTAIN.” The Mayor stated that he had asked the resolution be prepared to expand the existing Personnel Committee. He further explained that during the budget process the Council delayed three things that they felt needed to be addressed. One of those was a review of the Town’s job descriptions, salary classifications and pay scales. He stated this was last done eight or nine years ago. He explained some of the things the committee would be studying. After a brief discussion, Councilmember White made a motion to approve the resolution as read. Mayor Althaus seconded the motion. The vote was four in favor with Councilmember Ruffin opposed.

Next the Council considered “A RESOLUTION APPOINTING MEMBERS TO THE MOUNTAIN ARTS COMMUNITY CENTER BOARD OF DIRECTORS FOR THE TOWN OF SIGNAL MOUNTAIN.” The Town Manager read the resolution. Councilmember Ruffin made a motion to approve the resolution. Councilmember Bryant seconded the motion and it passed unanimously.

The Mayor briefly spoke of the various boards and committees in the Town. He noted a new updated list had been prepared. He explained that generally as board and committee member’s terms had expired, the Chairperson had been asked to make a recommendation to reappoint members or appoint new members as well as recommendations from the Council. He talked about how important the boards and committees had been to the Town over the years.

During the citizens’ and other’s opportunity to address the Council Brian Wright, with Johnson, Murphey and Wright, P.C. the Certified Public Accountants that audited the Town’s fiscal year end June 30, 2002, addressed the Council and presented each member with a copy of the Town’s Annual Financial Report. He talked about various statements in the report and pointed out some of the highlights of the report.

Next Lou Oliphant gave a report on the Planning Commission. She noted that a new State law required the Planning Commission members to get four hours of education.

She also noted that the Town would need to adopt a new flood plan map and it would be ready for the December Council meeting. The Mayor briefly explained the functions of the Planning Commission.

The Recorder read the results of a bid opening on October 25, 2002, for the painting of the Town Hall and Gym/Guild Room addition. The bids were: Eastman Company $22,420, Certa Pro Painting Company $8,568 and Jerry Wilson Painting $7,680. The memo informed the Council that the bid was awarded to Jerry Wilson Painting.

The Recorder then read the results of a bid opening on November 1, 2002, for office furniture. The bids for the furniture were: Cooper’s Office Supply $7,075, Chattanooga Office Supply $7,737.17 and National Business Furniture $7,739.58. The memo informed the bid had been awarded to Cooper’s Office Supply.

The Mayor spoke of the three items the Town had postponed during the budget process until the new Council was in place. One was the job description and pay scales. He then explained that the second was an employee fitness study principally for the Police and Fire but for any employees that might fit in this category. He spoke briefly about the fitness program the Town has had in the past and the need for fitness. The third item would be to do a study of the recreation facilities and activities in the Town.

Phil Noblett noted the need for an attorney client meeting with the Council to bring the new Council up to date on the pending Tabb lawsuit. A date was set for December 3 at 7:00 p.m.

The meeting was adjourned.
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