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Council approves $11.45M budget

Posing with the city of Atmore’s new POW-MIA flag are, from left, council members Chris Harrison and Susan Smith, Mayor Jim Staff, Auxiliary members Gayle Johnson and Arlene Delafosse, and council members Chris Walker, Webb Nall and Jerome Webster.

Atmore City Council members received a token of appreciation from a local veterans auxiliary, approved a static operating budget for the upcoming fiscal year, purchased five new police vehicles and gave approval to three other items on a busier-than-usual agenda during their Monday, September 25, meeting.
After the invocation, Pledge of Allegiance and a silent reading and vocal approval of the minutes from the council’s last session, Gayle Johnson and Arlene Delafosse, members of the Atmore Memorial VFW Auxiliary, gave the city the familiar black and white banner created to honor Prisoners of War or military personnel listed as Missing in Action.

“The Ladies Auxiliary would like to present to the city of Atmore a POW-MIA flag for all your support of our organization and our local veterans,” Johnson said. “We’d just like to say thank you.”

City council members approved an $11,451,300 operating budget for the year that begins on October 1, 2017 and ends on September 30, 2018. Mayor Jim Staff pointed out that the municipal financing package is “basically the same as last year.”

The lion’s share of the city’s expenditures ($2,781,000 or 24 percent) is earmarked for the police department, while “Subsidies & Appropriations” ($2,561,530) will use up a 22-percent share of the budget.

Streets & Sanitation will have $1,601,500 (14 percent) on which to operate, while 13 percent ($1,435,720) will go to finance General Government and 12 percent ($1,324,100) was appropriated to the fire department.

The remaining 15 percent will be divided among Building & Inspection ($296,500), Atmore Public Library ($260,500), Parks & Recreation ($257,200), Municipal Court ($229,300), Landfill ($221,400), Beautification ($169,050) and Atmore Municipal Airport ($79,700).

The council also approved the sole bid received for five APD patrol vehicles. Johnson Ford will provide the Ford Explorers at a price of $26,668.08 each, a total cost of $133,340.40.

In other action, council members unanimously approved

* an Alcoholic Beverage Control license for Gather, a new restaurant set to open soon in downtown.

* a request from Women of Distinction that the group conduct its annual Cancer Walk on Saturday, October 14. The march will begin at noon, at Atmore City Hall, and will proceed to Houston Avery Park.

* The re-appointment of Vasaroy Johnson to the Housing Authority Board.