City of Waynesboro Receives Grant to Fund Additional Police Officer

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   The Waynesboro City Commission met in regular session on Monday, July 13th, 2020 at City Hall in Waynesboro. All commissioners were present, including Mayor Jeff Howell, Vice Mayor Charlie Mosley, Commissioner Chris Bevis, Commissioner Jeff Davis, and Commissioner Tony Creasy. Also in attendance were City Manager John Hickman, City Attorney Josh Polk, and City Recorder Paige Jackson.

   Mayor Howell called the meeting to order, and Commissioner Davis offered the invocation.

   Commissioner Davis made a motion to approve the minutes from the previous meeting. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bevis, and the minutes were unanimously approved.

   City Manager Hickman began by confirming the success of the city’s Independence Day Celebration on July 3rd. A large crowd of an estimated 3,000 people spread out around the City Park and other nearby areas to enjoy the musical performances and spectacular fireworks display, and many of the vendors that were set up at the park sold out of their products. The event turned out to be very successful, following doubts earlier on that it would even take place due to the coronavirus pandemic.

   City Manager Hickman then informed the commission that the city was awarded a COPS grant, which will provide funding for an additional officer on the city police force for three years if the city agrees to keep the officer on for a fourth year. Hickman said that only 15 police departments in the state received the grant, with Waynesboro being the smallest city to be awarded. The city manager went on to say that Lt. Jeremy Staggs was to be commended for all the work he put in on the grant application, and that this was the first time it had been awarded to Waynesboro after being applied for many times.

   With no items of new business on the agenda, open items were next. Mayor Howell gave a brief recap of the three stars that were recently unveiled on the new Music Walk of Fame on the square. The Wayne County Museum Committee presented the first three stars on July 3rd, which represent Earl “Peanutt” Montgomery, Ralph Davis, and Neal “Tywop” Jones.

   Commissioner Davis said that he had heard complaints about the need for weedeating on Lloyd Street. City Manager Hickman said that no inmate labor from the jail or the boot camp is available at this time due to the recent rise in coronavirus cases, and that the city promises to do the best they can on landscaping upkeep with no inmate labor to help.

   Commissioner Creasy mentioned a sidewalk near the Jean Walker residence that has a lot of weeds, and City Manager Hickman said that particular sidewalk has deteriorated to the point that it needs repair or replacement.

   Vice Mayor Mosley then brought up an issue with a lock that was changed on the electrical box for the lights at the Sportsplex. He suggested that the city allow up to ten keys to be distributed among Dixie Youth coaches and officials so that the lights may be turned on when needed for practice. At least one city employee will also have a key, and a list will be maintained of those who are given a key.

   With no further business to come before the commission, Commissioner Creasy made a motion to adjourn. Commissioner Bevis seconded the motion, and the meeting was adjourned.