In Dec. 23 IssueBy John ThompsonTimes Journal Reporter
The December meeting of the Jamestown City Council marks the end of Brooks Bates' tenure as mayor. Before swearing in all returning council members and Terry Lawless as the new mayor, Bates recounted memorable events during his administration.
His most notable events were the $13 million expansion of the Jamestown Water Treatment Plant, the new judicial center, the addition of seven acres to the Jamestown Cemetery, and the great effort put into renovating the city park, a project he hopes will continue along with future park expansion.
Bates said that a couple of tough items he dealt with were the destruction and replacement of the Jamestown Doughboy monument.
The monument was destroyed in an accident involving a drunk driver in 2008. Another regret he mentioned is not being able to get anywhere with cleaning up the town branch.
"(The town branch is) the same shape as the day I came in, and I tried," Bates said.
He expressed his thankfulness for the opportunity to work with the city council.
"I've really enjoyed sitting at this table with you," Bates said, later saying that "Jamestown is in my DNA, just like it is in all of yours."
Members of the council expressed gratitude at the opportunity to work with Bates.
"I've enjoyed working with you for the past four years," Councilman Larry Joe Murray said, to which Councilwoman Marcelene Taylor replied, "I second that motion."
Incoming Mayor Terry Lawless thanked Bates for easing the transition.
"Shortly after we realized I was going to be the next mayor, you had me in the office several times to go over different things and I just want to say thank you for bringing me up to snuff and I'm looking forward to working with the council for the next two or four years," said Lawless.
Andy Demoss, an accountant with the city's auditing firm of Ray, Foley, Hensley & Company, PLLC, presented the City Council with the year-end audit report.
In what was characterized as a clean audit that received the firm's highest marks, the major point was the city's increase in net assets for the year by $600,000, putting the city's net assets at approximately $31.35 million.
A number of budget amendments were proposed and approved as follows: $2,500 sewer collection - installation materials, $500 general maintenance - small equipment, $600 water distribution - supplies/tech supplies, $4,112 cemetery miscellaneous, $900 police uniforms - Jeremy England, $10,000 water production - Professional Fees.
For the last budget amendment item, Bates explained with increased capabilities of the rebuilt water treatment facility comes more responsibility.
"There are a lot more regulations that come with our new water system," Bates said.
Board appointments were made as follows: Janet Wilkerson was appointed two years and Glenna Bertram one year on the cemetery board; Jeff Warner was appointed four years on the gas board;
Mindi Bertram, David Rexroat, Nick Shearer and Donnie Wilkerson were appointed four year terms on the park board, and Barry Coffey, Don Cooper and Ron Bertram were also appointed two years to the board.