Friday, February 21, 2014

City of Louisville Considers Smoke Free Ordinance

The Louisville Board of Aldermen met on Tuesday evening, February 18 in a regularly scheduled meeting. At the top of the agenda was the Mayor’s Youth Council. Members of the Council were present to present a proposal for a Smoke Free Ordinance for the city. Macey Donald, the president of MYC introduced Leigh Lampkin of the Mississippi Tobacco Free Coalition. Lampkin presented some statistics on smoking, secondhand smoke and smoke related health issues.

The board was presented with a draft document of a smoke free ordinance for the city of Louisville. If such an ordinance was adopted, no smoking indoors in businesses or public places would be allowed within the city limits. Lampkin noted that 78 other towns and cities across the state have adopted a similar ordinance and are now considered smoke free.

Aldermen had several questions including method of enforcement, what constitutes private clubs, the inclusion of E-cigarettes and possible grants available if the city chose to go smoke-free.

Alderman Dickie Caperton indicated that when this issue came up nine years ago he was against such a policy but that his attitude toward it had changed. Alderman Eugene Crosby said this was something we should pursue as a board and the board agreed to add it to the agenda for the next meeting and to allow for public input.

The Board agenda included these additional items:
  • Approved a resolution of Support of Scenic Byways for the Noxubee Hills Scenic Byway. 
  • Alderwoman Judy McLeod indicated that she had spoken with people in the area and that the consensus of opinion was not to remove the four-way stop at the intersection of Jones and Park Street. The board had previously voted to remove the stop signs along with several others. After discussion, the board voted to rescind its original order to remove the four-way stop. 
  • Per Woody Sample: accepted amendment to contract with administrator Sample, Hicks & Associates to lower the total contract from $58,000 to $53,000 on the Natron project. 
  • Natron Project: agreed to make payments on project of $301,214 total upon receipt of funds . 
  • E911 Training: approved request for Vera McCarty, Kayla Rogers, and Felicia Mays to attend APCO MS Chapter Annual Conference in Biloxi, on April 20-23, registration $450.00 each, meals, travel and lodging advance requested, all reimbursable. 
  • Approved request for Todd McCullough and Jennifer Dunn to attend MRPA Field Maintenance Workshop on March 5 in Oxford, registration of $30.00 each. 
  • Approved Will Hill request to attend MML Board of Directors meeting, February 26-27, meals & lodging advance request. 
  • MML Summer Conference, June 22-June 26, 2014, in Biloxi, authorized City Clerk to make reservations at Beau Rivage, and to make payment of registration to MML and travel allowance at the appropriate time for Mayor, City Clerk, City Attorney, and Aldermen. 
  • Received a report from the Mayor concerning changes of the Mid – South Regional Library budgeting methods. The changes will prevent the regional library from building up reserves from yearly city and county contributions. 
  • Accepted resignation of Jimmy Sharp from Historic Preservation Board. 
  • Notice of appointment to Historic Preservation Board -ask board members to consider someone to fill this position. 

L. M. Claiborne: Discussed DUI grant participation. Police Chief Claiborne indicated that the yearly DUI grant may not be worth the funds provided. Claiborne indicated that the paperwork has become exceedingly cumbersome and that new restrictions upon the use and time of a designated officer made it difficult to administrate. Claiborne indicated that DUI grant funds were denied for officer time when no tickets were issued and that required work schedules were not realistic for one officer.

Claiborne said, “Our major concern should now be property crime. This is a good time to absorb that position because we are one officer short and it will allow us to reallocate those resources.”

After discussion the board voted to rescind the previous order to pursue the DUI grant for the upcoming year.

Other items taken up by the board included:
  • authorization of payments upon receipt of funds for the Polo roof project
  • received a brief update on the Natron project. Mayor Hill indicated that some initial startup could begin as early as April or May with possibly one line of production in operation.
  • Reviewed the sales tax report for the city which indicated that sales were up about $3000 over the previous year for the year to date.
  • Mayor Hill briefed the board on the status of the 911 interlocal agreement with Winston County. He felt that the City and County had come to terms of understanding concerning some financial issues and made a giant leap toward agreement with hopes to have an agreement soon.
The board’s next meeting is scheduled for March 4.