All’s Quiet on the County and City Front

Harry Sanders Takes Charge

Harry Sanders Takes Charge

Our new year entered quietly, as our County and City governments started business Tuesday in an almost genteel manner. The morning opened with a splendid Inaugural Ceremony in the upper level of the Trotter Convention Center and closed with a mild, subdued City Council meeting in the evening.

The morning’s events centered mostly on the swearing-in of all the elected County officials we will have for the next four years. Chancellor Judge Jim Davidson and Circuit Judge Jim Kitchens swore in the individuals, who were joined by friends and family members on the stage. A pleasant crowd of several hundred watched the activities.

After the ceremony, the Board of Supervisors met with Lisa Younger Neese presiding. In a non-surprise, Harry Sanders was re-elected as the Board President in a 4 to 1 vote, with Leroy Books as the lone “nay” vote. District 3 Supervisor John Holliman was elected Vice President with the same tally.

Leroy Brooks, earlier in the discussion, eliminated any real controversy by refusing the nomination for President presented by District 4 Supervisor Jeff Smith. Leroy Brooks cited he did not have enough votes to win; therefore, he removed himself from the nomination process.

In other news, the following County appointments were made:

  • The County Attorney will still be Tim Hudson; however, his law firm, Sims and Sims, will be the official firm of record for the County. By hiring the organization and not Mr. Hudson, the county saved $14,000 in benefits and salary.
  • Ralph Billingsley will continue to be County Administrator.
  • Ronnie Burns will continue to be Road Manager and will receive a raise from $67,500 to $72,000. This measure was passed 4 to 1, with Leroy Brooks again being the lone “nay” vote. Everyone on the board agreed that Mr. Burns was the best road manager the County has ever had during their tenure, including Leroy Brooks. Mr. Brooks stated, “This has nothing to do with Ronnie’s work.” Mr. Brooks then elaborated that he was concerned about the economic realities of the coming year and did not feel comfortable giving raises.
  • Tommy Kidd was nominated and accepted the newly appointed Assistant Road Manager position and was also given a raise. This measure passed with the same consistent 4 to 1 vote.

The only real “heat” felt at the meeting was a brief exchange between Mr. Harry Sanders and Mr. Leroy Brooks, concerning a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Lowndes County Department of Human Services. Mr. Brooks and Mr. Sanders exchanged words, as Mr. Sanders was determined to assure that the organization paid their share of their bills, including phone and janitorial services, back to the County. These bills have been left unpaid for approximately six years.

Mr. Sanders was quick to point out that the County “had the stick” to make the Department of Human Services pay their share of the bills, but Mr. Brooks added, “Just because you have the stick, don’t mean you have to use it.” Mr. Sanders then quoted the great Teddy Roosevelt, and the meeting came back to order, after Mr. Billingsley was told to contact the organization and correct the problem.

Tuesday’s City Council meeting was as quiet as a mouse, with very little comments from the Mayor or City Council. The only highlight was when Ms. Christina Berry announced a city workshop on city development, to be held January 18, 2012, at 10:00 am.  Stand by for more information.

Joseph St. John

A/K/A Mr. MoJo Rising      

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One Comment on “All’s Quiet on the County and City Front”

  1. bill Says:

    I wonder how long it will take for Mr Sanders and Mr Brooks to be back at their old self. Maybe Harry has beat Leroy down over the years. Leroy seems to have lost his will to fight. Can there be peace on the Board now? Who will control Harry? ” Very Interesting”. Oh well we still have the City and the CVB Board.


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