Home » Clifton Commission Votes to Apply for Grant to Work on Stribling Museum

Clifton Commission Votes to Apply for Grant to Work on Stribling Museum

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The Clifton City Commission met in regular session on Monday, December 13, 2021. All commissioners were in attendance, including Mayor Mark Staggs, Vice Mayor Eva Ruth Warren, Layton Packwood, Stacy Huntingford, and Randy Burns. Also in attendance were City Recorder Barbara Culp and City Manager Doug Kibbey.

Mayor Staggs called the meeting to order. The invocation was offered by Randy Burns, and the Pledge of Allegiance was recited by all.

A motion was made by Commissioner Burns to approve the minutes of the November 21, 2021 Beer Board meeting. The motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Warren and carried unanimously. Vice Mayor Warren then made a motion to approve the minutes from the regular city meeting on November 21, 2021. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Burns and carried unanimously.

The only item on the agenda under old business was the second reading of budget amendment #3. Commissioner Burns made a motion to pass the second reading of the amendment, and the motion carried unanimously on roll call vote.

The commission next discussed an issue with the Stribling Museum. The building basically has no insulation, and there is black mold growing inside in some areas. The commission discussed the best way to install insulation while preserving the historic site. It was pointed out that there is a 2022 Historic Preservation Grant available which could provide funds to work on the Stribling Museum. The grant does have a 40% local match. Commissioner Packwood made a motion to approve the resolution to endorse the application for the 2022 Historic Grant. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Burns and carried unanimously.

Next, the commission discussed the recent acquisition of a Ford Ranger 4×4 truck. It was stated that the previous owner found out that the truck had been used in the sale of drugs, and no longer wants the vehicle. City Manager Kibbey told the commission that the truck has already been titled in the city’s name, and asked that it be declared as surplus property. Commissioner Packwood made a motion to declare the truck as surplus, and the motion was seconded by Commissioner Huntingford. The motion carried unanimously.

Christopher Huntingford, co-owner of the Clifton RV Park and Marina, went over the plans that they would like to be approved by the commission. Phase 1 would be for a bath house, tiny cabin, and storage building at the Clifton Marina. The bath house would offer restrooms to the public, and the storage shed would be used for lawn mowing equipment. Commissioner Stacy Huntingford said they have been spending over $45,000 per year for mowing and want to start doing their own lawn care. She explained that Phase 2 of their plans would be to revamp the parking lot and entrance to the marina. They also requested approval for a future play area for kids. Commissioner Packwood inquired as to how much would be taken off the rent, and Commissioner Huntingford estimated between $25,000 and $30,000. A motion was made by Commissioner Burns to approve Phase 1 of the proposed plans for the Clifton RV Park and Marina. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Packwood and carried unanimously.

Former Clifton Police Officer James Newcomb addressed the commission next. He stated that in the past two years that he was employed by the city, he did not miss any calls. He said that he even received a bonus and was told by Chief Jerroll Henderson that he was doing a good job. Newcomb went on to say that he and Chief Henderson had a “little disagreement” about something, and the Chief told him to check with the DA to see who was right and who was wrong. This allegedly took place approximately eight months ago. Newcomb then said that his police car was picked up the previous Monday, and he was terminated from his employment with the city. Commissioner Huntingford asked Newcomb what the situation was with Chief Henderson, and Newcomb said that he had driven in the parking lot of his own business and left black marks on the pavement, and the chief told him that could be considered as reckless driving. Newcomb went on to say that this took place when his business was closed. He then said that he loves Clifton and wants to remain in business there. He asked that the commission reconsider his termination, and Mayor Staggs said that the commission does not have the authority to reinstate anyone. Commissioner Huntingford asked if the city had previously been doing business with Newcomb, and City Manager Kibbey said that they had because Newcomb offered the best prices and the city vehicles did not have to be taken out of town to be serviced. Kibbey said that the city would continue to do business with Newcomb, but his decision about Newcomb’s termination had not changed.

Department reports were next on the agenda. City Manager Kibbey reported that installation of the new water meters is almost complete from the contractors on the project. The new gas meters will be installed next.

City Manager Kibbey then said that the city’s Christmas party had been scheduled to be held at Meo Mio, but they have no electricity. Commissioner Packwood made a motion to give the money to city employees that would have been used to pay for the Christmas party. The motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Warren and carried unanimously. It was agreed that the city would provide hamburgers and hot dogs at the fire hall the following Thursday for city employees, firemen, and commissioners.

Police Chief Henderson next told the commission that Officer Jeff Poynter’s status had been changed from part time to full time, and he will be working third shift. He said that Investigator Steve Wilson had recently worked two or three drug cases and started working another one that day.

In response to former officer Newcomb’s termination, Chief Henderson stated that he likes Newcomb as a person, but it was hard having Newcomb working under him because he kept “some kind of racket” going on all the time.

Commissioner Burns informed the commission that the city has a new employee who lives in Waynesboro and transports the inmate workers from Waynesboro. He asked if it would be better to allow the employee to drive a city vehicle home rather than driving to Clifton and back to Waynesboro. He said that would allow the employee to get to Clifton 30 minutes earlier and back 30 minutes later. City Manager Kibbey said that he would check with Sheriff Fisher about this because the Sheriff controls when the inmates get to leave and come back in.

With no further business to come before the commission, the meeting was adjourned.

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