JASPER — The Jasper City Council approved seven resolutions and an ordinance in its monthly meeting last week.
City Attorney Rhett Bullard brought the ordinance before the council in order to adopt regulations designed to promote public health, safety and general welfare to the residents in the community which were brought on by hazards identified by FEMA.
The ordinance, 22 pages in length, ensures the city is in compliance with FEMA regulations so the city and residents are able to utilize the National Flood Insurance Program.
The council approved it unanimously, as it did the seven resolutions presented at the Aug. 12 meeting. Those resolutions establish a policy to support small businesses as well as women- and minority-owned businesses; four deal with various areas of the city’s Community Development Block Grant program; while one calls for residents to become more involved with the planning and development of the city and the last prohibits the use of excessive force by law enforcement against individuals involved in nonviolent civil rights demonstrations.
Resident Sarah Higginbotham expressed during public comment her displeasure with the lack of support the community shows Hamilton County Schools. Higginbotham said opposing teams bring more fans to home games than HCHS has at the games.
She, likewise, said the city’s residents seem to have lost the “need to impress” when it came to the appearance of the city. She added there are rarely concerns brought up in the town’s meetings, giving the perception that the council isn’t working hard enough.
City Manager Marcus Collins as well as council members LaBarfield Bryant, Jay Daigle III, William Mitchell V and Gerald Lewis Jr. all responded to that accusation, saying they were addressing the issues but they have to take it one step at a time.
“We hate to bring false hope if we mention our efforts in the meeting, just in case it doesn’t work out the way we’d hope it to,” Lewis said.
Collins added, “It’s a team effort.”
Another issue brought up during public comment by various residents was the need to utilize code enforcement to help with some of those issues.
“Although code enforcement does exist, it has not been funded,” Bullard said. “You have it, but it has no teeth. Therefore it cannot function properly.”
The council said it was working on ways to fund the code enforcement in order to better utilize it.