Listed under communications from mayor, the item was skipped over following the approval of minutes from the Jan. 14 council meeting.
Council members voted on changing the mayor pro tem from Earl Gray to Louis Hamm at the Jan. 14 meeting, but the item was not listed on the agenda at the time. The motion passed with two votes, a majority of the three-member council. The charter stipulates the mayor pro tem can be changed with a majority vote at the first meeting in January. Yet because it was not on the agenda at the time, the council revisited the item at the second meeting in January.
“Earl Gray objected to it because it was not on the agenda,” mayor Lynn Long said. “So we put it on the agenda.”
During the most recent vote for mayor pro tem, Gray again voted in opposition. Placed on the agenda more as a formality than an actual vote, Gray again objected to the way it was presented.
“Is there a reason why it’s not listed under new business?” said Gray about the mayor pro tem being listed in the communication from the mayor section of the agenda. To which Long responded, “It’s my decision to put it on the agenda like that.”
In other business, the council approved the proposal to issue a refund for water and sewer revenue bonds. City manager Ron Goulart explained the bonds were issued at a higher interest rate than is now being offered.
“This would represent a savings of $1 million,” said Goulart.
The bond was taken out in 2009 with a principle amount of $11 million on capital projects for water and sewer. The remaining principle is about $10,210,000, said Goulart. The council unanimously agreed to refund the old bond with a new one bearing a lower interest rate.
Also listed under new business was the proposal to purchase a new police radio. At the start of the meeting, police chief David Eubanks introduced three new officers to the city council and public. The budgeted positions being filled led to the need for an additional radio.
“With the addition of three new employees I want an additional radio (to be used as backup in case one is being serviced),” Eubanks said. The cost of a new police radio is $3,748. The council unanimously approved the purchase. Next meeting: Fort Oglethorpe City Council will meet Monday, Feb. 11, at 6:30 p.m.