Apologies voiced Obion officials hire new police officer

Apologies voiced Obion officials hire new police officer

Posted: Wednesday, May 4, 2011 9:05 pm

By KEVIN BOWDEN
Staff Reporter
By a 7-0 vote, the Obion City Council hired former Troy police officer Tim Clark Monday.
Two weeks ago, Clark’s hiring was tabled by the council after concerns were raised by Mayor Glen Parnell.
The issue was brought off the table Monday night by council member Renee Webber.
“The motion was tabled because Mayor Glen Parnell stated he had concerns after talking with members of the Troy Police Department,” she said at the meeting. “I feel it is my responsibility to clarify and make amends for the actions of the mayor.”
She went on to say that she spoke with an officer with the Troy Police Department and was informed “they are very upset to find they were quoted as saying anything negative about Tim Clark.”
“They feel he would make a good officer for the Town of Obion. Again, they had nothing negative to say about Mr. Clark,” Ms. Webber said. “I would like to apologize to the Troy Police Department on behalf of the Town of Obion.
“I also apologize to Tim Clark. Mr. Clark came here looking for a job as a police officer, not to be subjected to anyone’s political motives.”
As a member of Obion’s Police Committee, Ms. Webber said the committee stands by its recommendation to hire Clark as a police officer.
She said officers in the Troy Police Department “were completely shocked” to read in The Messenger about the concerns raised by Parnell at the Obion council’s last meeting.
Council member Mike Miller made the motion to take Clark’s hiring off the table, and council member James DePriest seconded the motion. After that motion passed unanimously, council member and Police Committee chairman Polk Glover made the motion to hire Clark, and that motion was seconded by council member Bob Anderson.
Clark attended Monday night’s Obion meeting and appeared pleased with the unanimous vote for his hiring.
Also during Monday night’s 50-minute meeting, the council discussed several issues related to recent storms and flooding.
Police Chief Royce Aker announced at Monday night’s meeting he and other city officials were scheduled to meet with Hornbeak Fire Chief Bob Reavis, who also serves on the Local Emergency Planning Committee, to go over an evacuation plan for the city.
Ms. Webber added she was very impressed by the turnout of people who helped during the town’s storm recovery effort.
In other action, the council:
• Decided to have the city conduct a follow-up series of employee evaluations and report to the council on those evaluations at the council’s next meeting.
• Voted to proceed with plans to take legal action against city residents with delinquent property taxes. City Recorder Jana Fluty told the council there is about $43,000 in delinquent property taxes owed to the city.
• Announced the city will seek bids for health insurance, a city auditor and for trash collection. The council also decided to seek bids to install ditch grinders in the city.
• Voted to proceed with steps to force a resident in the 1400 block of West Palestine Avenue to clean up limbs and other debris in his yard. Council member Patsy Barker said the limbs have not been cleared away in about two years and the condition of the yard is causing problems with snakes.
“There’s no excuse here,” she said.
• Discussed but took no action on the removal of scrap metal from the former city hall building, which was destroyed by strong winds a week ago. Mrs. Barker questioned Parnell about the removal and sale of two doors taken from the site, to which Parnell replied the doors were given to David Eaves in exchange for work he did on flagpoles in the city.
Mrs. Barker also questioned Parnell about an unpaid invoice, which he said he was being taking care of.
Monday night’s meeting was opened with a prayer by DePriest and the Pledge of Allegiance led by Parnell.
Staff Reporter Kevin Bowden may be contacted by e-mail at kmbowden@ucmessenger.com.

Published in The Messenger 5.4.11

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