Brushy Creek deemed still viable; Council elections cancelled
During their regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday, March 10, the Marlin City Council met to address a number of items.
There was an executive session that ran nearly two hours discussing a six month review for both the City Secretary, Maryann Waddle, and the City Manager, Cedric Davis, along with a 90 day review for Marlin’s Chief of Police , Lawrence McCall, and deliberation on the Brushy Creek contract with consultants Dave Mitamura and Bill McMullen.
The first three passed their reviews with flying colors, but after a discussion with Mitamura post executive session, it was decided that the decision would come after Mitamura provided the council with a proposal of the time needed/costs to continue the project.
Mitamura did not have answers to some of the questions asked by the council, such as how long the project could take or project details, but he had a detailed explanation of what would come next.
The consultant announced to the council that the project is still “viable” in the eyes of NRCS, meaning that the conservation service can conduct a reevaluation of the project (to account for any natural changes that have accrued over time and changes in technology/construction costs) at no cost to the City of Marlin.
Mitamura urged the council to educate themselves on the costs associated with creating and maintaining a reservoir, should they decide to move forward at that point.
“The latest update on construction costs of creating a reservoir is $20.8 million in 2017,” the policy consultant explained.
During the discussion, it was brought to light the three flood control structures would need to be built as well. Initially funded by Falls County, the structures would have to be created before any further works could be done.
It is unknown whether Falls County is still interested in footing the bill for the new structures, but the control structures will have to be paid for somehow.
The motion was made by Rhonda Milton, seconded by Neddie Lang-Moore and passed unanimously to wait for the proposal at the next meeting.
The upcoming election for Precincts 2 and 6 has been cancelled as well, with ordinance 20-003.
“We only have one precinct that has more than one candidate,” City Secretary, Maryann Waddle, explained. “That’ll be Precinct 4.”
Initially, there was a question of whether this violates City Charter Section 2.01, where an amendment from 2017 states that “No member of the City Council may serve more than two consecutive two year terms.”
The amendment states that it is “effective at the date of passage of proposition [May 6, 2017], and applies to terms starting after that date, but does not apply to terms that were ongoing at that date,” meaning that not enough time has elapsed for any of the officials to have served two full two-year terms following the amendment.
Both Rhonda Milton (Pct. 2) and Douglas Porter (Pct. 6) served on the Marlin City Council during the creation of this amendment, with their most recent term beginning in June of 2018. Both of the officials have agreed to “sit” for another one-year term, where special elections will be held along with the normal elections for precincts one, three, and five. Whoever wins that election in precincts two and six will serve for a one-year term and will have the option to run again for the next full two-year term.
It is still unknown as to what the impact of the COVID-19 spread will have on national elections this year. Information will be provided as soon as it is available.