Longtime UC employee calling it quits
Posted: Thursday, May 19, 2011 8:18 am
By: Donna Ryder, Associate Editor
By DONNA RYDER
Union City will soon be losing a long-time employee.
Bill Bell, director of the water department, has decided to retire after 44 years in that capacity. His last day will be June 30.
“I appreciate having had the opportunity to serve the citizens of Union City in this capacity for the past 44 years.
“Overall, it has been an enjoyable and unforgettable experience, filled with challenges and achievements,” Bell wrote in a letter to city manager Kathy Dillon.
“I sincerely appreciate the relationships and friendships I have made through the years with everyone from the State of Tennessee officials to various city councils, city managers, other city employees, as well as the citizens of Union City in general.
“It has been a good life, and I am thankful for it all,” he wrote.
The city council voted to accept his retirement during Tuesday night’s meeting.
In other business, after the meeting was opened in prayer by city attorney Jim Glasgow Jr., the council:
• Approved on first reading an ordinance to rezone Thomas Jernigan property and a portion of the Obion Square Shopping Center located on Edwards Street from R-2, medium density, to B-2, intermediate business. There were no comments during a public hearing prior to the council meeting.
• Awarded a bid for the demolition of property at 1309-1311 Lone Oak St. to Ed McCord for $4,800. He was the only bidder.
• Voted to sign an engagement letter and contract with ATA for the 2011 audit. The fee increased from $20,000 to $21,150, Ms. Dillon said.
• Agreed to hire Wauford Engineering as the engineers for the replacement of the Shorty Shields Wastewater Pumping Station. The company’s fee on the $210,000 project is $57,000.
“The pumping station is at least 30 years old and I don’t think it will hold up under another flooding,” Ms. Dillon said.
Public Works director Steve Ladd said Wauford suggested replacing the station, instead of sinking money into it for repairs.
• Approved job descriptions for wastewater plant operator 1, wastewater plant operator 2 and wastewater plant foreman 2.
• Learned the police department had monitored traffic on Church Street where there had been a complaint about speeders. The top speed clocked for the 35 mph-zoned area was 25-26, according to the report. Assistant Chief Perry Barfield said sitting on a porch it may look like the cars are speeding, but it is difficult to gauge unless the viewer has been trained or is using radar.
Barfield suggested “Children at Play” signs could be posted, if that was the concern of the complainant. He will speak with the resident this week.
• Authorized the purchase of a $130,000 rail switch for the Northwest Tennessee Regional Industrial Park. It will take six months to build but must be paid for in advance. The city will be reimbursed 871⁄2 percent for the cost of the switch through a Fast Track Grant.
The council also authorized the solicitation of bids for rails to be installed to prepare for the installation of the rail switch.
• Discussed the deplorable condition of the parking lot at County Market Place and suggested the city check its ordinances and take the next step to make the owners repair it.
“There are spots out there you can lose a car in,” councilman Bill “Rat” Harrison said, adding, “It’s not fair to the merchants and it’s not fair to the customers.”
Ms. Dillon said the city has issued letters about the matter.
“I don’t think anybody will disagree it is awful,” she said.
• Heard from Ladd that the limb machine is still down and the public works department is doing its best to keep up with picking up the limbs. The fuel pump is broken on the limb truck.
Ladd said he wants to make the public aware that the limb pile on Main Street is not to be used by the public. It is only for use by the city. He said several contractors and out-of-city residents have been caught dumping on the site. Some people are even dumping items besides limbs, he added. The site is being monitored.
• Learned from Hailey that there is land on Nailling Drive which is for sale at an upcoming auction. He asked if the city needed it for cemetery property. No action was taken.
Associate Editor Donna Ryder can be contacted by e-mail at email@example.com.
Published in The Messenger 5.18.11