Controlled Burn, Payment of Bills Highlight City Council Discussions

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A controlled burn created some sparks during Monday’s regular meeting of the Salyersville City Council.
A bill presented by council member Jeff Ross on behalf of Rick Howard’s TV Cable claimed damages from the burning of a structure that destroyed a section of Howard’s communications wiring.

The bill, totaling $1,756.60, received support from Ross, who asked the council for payment and prompted some discussion.
“If we don’t pay this does it mean you are going to shut our cable off?” council member Kenneth Williams, referring to a previous issue between the council and the cable owner, asked Howard.
“That sounds slanderous to me,” Howard said. “Are you asking me that as a member of this council or as a citizen?”
Following the exchange, the council agreed to table the issue until the city’s insurance company could be contacted regarding the matter.
Other bills created discussion as Ross again voiced his desire to have all bills brought to meetings for individual viewing.
Mayor Howard said the bills were in another room and that it would take “forever” for them to be examined at the current time.
Ross also re-introduced the pay issue for Jincy Bailey, who was at the time of the June meeting owed over $4,000 for her work with Salyersville Renaissance.
Mayor Howard, who contended then that the tourism board was responsible for her pay, announced that Bailey had received partial payment and added that the tourism board was scheduled to meet August 3.
Tuesday afternoon Ross notified the Salyersville Independent claiming the money received by Bailey came from a Renaissance Committee fund that would have to be re-paid.
“They are telling the public one thing and doing another and I think the truth should come out,” he said. “They said they had paid her but they have not.”
The source of Bailey’s pay was not exactly identified during Monday’s meeting. Mayor Howard was not available for comment Tuesday regarding Ross’s charges.
Ross, who says Bailey has successfully brought grant money into the city, felt the board should have already met and called for the ouster of its members during Monday’s council get-together.
Tom Bailey gave Ross’s motion a second, but the idea failed when Mayor Howard broke a 3-3 council split with a nay vote.
In an unrelated matter, Ross questioned the training of a drug dog, claiming the mayor and police department went behind the council’s back in the matter.
According to Mayor Howard, police chief Matthew Watson collected funds from local businesses to pay for the training.
The dog, which Ross didn’t seem impressed with, has one training session remaining before it will be used as part of the department’s drug enforcement efforts.
Mayor Howard said the city would pay for the feeding and medical needs of the pooch and council members agreed unanimously to use it on a one-year trial basis and re-visit the issue at that time.