An honor guard of the New Albany Trail Life youth group opened the Monday, March 1, meeting of the New Albany Board of Aldermen,
Clay Hardy, the Trail Life chapter leader, introduced the group, which marched to the front of the meeting chamber with the flags of the United States and the State of Mississippi. They then led the aldermen and others at the meeting in recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance. Trail Life is sponsored by New Albany First Baptist Church. The church had sponsored a Boy Scouts of America troop for many years, but switched to the Trail Life organization. Hardy said the change was made because church members disagreed with the “the way Boy Scouts of America was going.”
Many Boy Scouts of America (BSA) troops have switched to the Trail Life organization, which was “founded in 2013 in response to changes in the membership policy of the BSA to allow the participation of openly gay leadership.” (You may follow the link at the end of this article learn more about the history of Trail Life and the controversy that launched it.)
Ward 4 Alderman Will Tucker presided at the meeting in the absence of Mayor Tim Kent, who is recovering from knee surgery done about a month ago.
New Albany Lights, Gas, and Water (NALGW) Manager Bill Mattox asked the board to approve a resolution calling on the state legislature to pass a bill to let NALGW provide high speed Internet service to its customers. He asked the board to approve a payment of $38,000 to Roberts Construction for work it has done to convert the old Fred’s building to space for the New Albany Police Department and NALGW.
Maddox also asked the board for authority to enter into negotiations with Night Hawk AMI of Dallas, Texas to provide AMI service for city utilities. AMI is an integrated system of smart meters, communications networks, and data management systems that enables two-way communication between utilities and customers. All of Mattox’s recommendations were unanimously approved by the board.
City Code Enforcement Officer Eric Thomas told the aldermen that the zoning board had approved a sign ordinance variance for Med Plus on Park Plaza Drive and a conditional permit to Ivan Giddings for occupancy of a house at 1310 South Central Avenue.
The work Burlington Northern/Santa Fe Railroad (BNSF) is doing on its overpass over Snyder Street was on the board’s “update agenda.” However, the board had no sound information about when that project would be completed and Snyder Street again open to traffic. Some BNSF workmen have responded to inquiries by saying it would be “up to two months” before the work is finished.
The board went into an executive session closed to the public at the end of the public meeting.
The next regularly scheduled meeting of the New Albany Board of Aldermen will be at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, April 4 at city hall.
Info on Trail Life: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trail_Life_USA
BNSF railroad, high-speed internet, New Albany Board of Aldermen, New Albany Light Gas and Water (NALGW), New Albany Planning and Zoning Board, New Albany Trail Life, Night Hawk AMI, Roberts Construction, Snyder St. railroad overpass