By Lew Vail
CORRIGAN – In anticipation of the swearing in of a new mayor and two councilmembers Tuesday evening, a large audience turned out for the Corrigan City Council meeting.
Since there was only one candidate for mayor and two incumbent council members to file for the three open positions this year, during the meeting the counsel verified the election had been canceled and the three unopposed people had been properly elected to serve.
Municipal Judge L.W. Yankie administered the oath of office to Bill Safford and Early C. Baldwin as council members; and then to the new mayor, former council member Joanna Lowe Gibson. Clark had chosen not to seek reelection as mayor and the council will now choose a successor for Gibson's position one. Council voted to name Johnnie Mae Brooks as mayor pro tem.
Counsel then re-appointed Yankie to serve as municipal court judge and named Erica Alvarez to serve as municipal court administrator. Gibson administered the oath of office to both individuals.
Counsel then discussed the lease of phone and computer equipment and technical maintenance support services from CMS IP Technologies. City Manager Darian Hardman and Police Chief Darrell Gibson spoke to counsel about the problems with the current phone system and computers in both the city and police buildings.
This company has new technology and will furnish a dozen laptops and new desktop computers to the Police Department and the telephone system will cover police, municipal court and city hall. At the end of the lease the equipment will become city property or they could trade in with this company or another company and upgrade to a newer system. Counsel discussed that the monthly cost will be no higher than current expenses and may be slightly lower, but will definitely provide a more workable system.
In the city reports forum, Yankie reported the municipal court worked five alcohol-related cases, 63 misdemeanors, six city ordinance violations, one tobacco violation and 733 traffic citations for a total of 808 actions for the month.
Lt. Thomas Spurlock reported the Corrigan Volunteer Fire Department completed one medical assistance call, five lift assist calls, assisted the Police Department once and had one controlled burn during the month of April.
Police Chief Gibson reported that during the month of April the department made 34 arrests, wrote 1,171 citations, answered 451 calls for service, made 1,260 building checks and work 22 new cases, with 12 of those cases being submitted to Polk County Criminal District Attorney for prosecution. There also were a total of five accidents and no fatalities recorded during the month.
The police chief advised counsel that he's going to take two officers and target complaints he has had about local houses being used for drug operations and or drug sales in the community.
Council Member Marie Thompson asked Mayor Gibson if the city would be supporting the National Day of Prayer. Gibson advised her she would check the legal opinion with city attorney to see if they can support it, but certainly on an individual basis all council members can support the National Day of Prayer.
Brooks asked that consideration be given to completing some work in the park on Martin Luther King street. She specifically noted the young people need a track around the park to exercise and just to walk and the adults could also use it as a health measure. She also said that they need to develop some system to shade some of the play areas during the hot summer months so the children are not spending too much time in the hot July and August sun.