By NATHAN GREGORY
The Starkville Board of Aldermen will consider calling for a public hearing on adoption of the 2013 city budget at its meeting tonight.
Chief Administrative Officer Lynn Spruill said the budgeted expenditures of the proposed budget are very similar to that of the 2012 budget.
“The board has been provided the budget. Once they determine that’s the one they want to go with, we will have a public hearing,” Spruill said.
Once the board agrees to hold the hearing, the budget draft itself will be made available to the public on the city’s website, http://www.cityofstarkville.org . Citizens would then have the opportunity to offer their input during the Sept. 4 meeting.
Spruill said the proposed 2013 budget does not involve a tax increase.
“We’ve met with the department heads and they have told us the items they need such as equipment … that they’re trying to replace,” Spruill said. “This is a very bare-bones budget we’re coming forward with. It is very close to the same budget for last year in terms of expenses. There certainly are no extravagant expenses. Operationally, we’re running very lean.”
There will also be consideration for the board to appoint Spruill as the new chairperson for the city’s audit and budget committee. That position is currently vacant after the resignation of Ward 2 Alderman Sandra Sistrunk from the committee.
Also on the agenda is consideration to hire a new department head for the city’s director of sanitation position. During a special call meeting last week, the board interviewed six candidates for the position that came open after Sharon Boyd stepped down in July. The interviewees were Percy Burnell, Emma Gandy, Jim McReynolds, Joe Reed, Charles Tillery and Chanteau Wilson.
Gandy and Wilson are both employed with the city. Gandy has worked in the city clerk’s office since 1999 and is currently deputy city clerk. Wilson currently serves as the administrative assistant for the mayor.
Tillery is currently the transportation and maintenance director for the Oktibbeha County School District.
The chosen candidate to fill the position will replace former director Sharon Boyd, who stepped down in July.
Among many functions listed in the job description document in the board’s July 17 e-packet, the director “manages and oversees the daily operation and administration of the waste collection, recycling, landfill, landscape, rubbish collection, litter control and the administrative and customer service functions of the division, which includes planning, organization and supervision of operations, customer service, field services and administrative services to ensure safe and efficient operations.”
Other duties include preparing long range plans for the division, conducting research, managing the division’s budget as well as applying for and administering grant money to support the division’s services.
The previous listed salary range for the position was a grade 13, which ranges from $39,543-$51,296. Boyd’s salary was listed as $51,296.
Personnel director Randy Boyd confirmed the board reviewed the job description and agreed to raise the position to a step one salary grade 16. That salary grade ranges from $52,631-$70,046.
The Board will also hear an appeal from attorney John Wade, who represents C Spire and is appealing the Starkville Board of Adjustments’ recent rejection of the company’s request to set up a 100-foot cellular tower. The board of adjustments rejected the request by a 3-1 vote.