Bryan Chandler is Dresden’s new Police Chief
Story by Shannon Taylor Senior Investigative Reporter
New Police Chief
The city of Dresden received two applications for Police Chief and after interviewing both candidates, Bryan Chandler was the pick. Chandler told the Press, “This has been a long over two-month process. Me and the other gentleman that was running for it both work for Dresden Police Department and we said whoever gets it gets it-we’re all happy with each other and we all love each other. There are no hard feelings. I am looking forward to getting to work and having my responsibilities told to me as far as where I go from here. We have a great group of officers, and we need applications. We are seeking police officers-certified or uncertified. Please come see us at City Hall!”
Public Hearing on Personnel Policy
The board held a public hearing on the final reading of the personnel policy. There were no questions or discussion from anyone. It was passed unanimously. The personnel policy was amended regarding sick leave. It states that employees will be compensated for unused sick leave upon retirement.
Input from citizens
Tracey King from Esser Street spoke on her neighbor whom she says has refrigerators, tires and junk all over his yard and porch. She said that he steals things from other people’s yards and that people staying there are always getting arrested. She said that he keeps getting a slap on the wrist at court. Chief Chandler said that he went to court in November and the judge gave him time to clean up the property and reschedule it for December, but he failed to appear in December to court and January. Chandler said that there are several people that live there and a lot of stuff that needs to be cleaned up. Chandler said that he is physically capable of getting the property cleaned up. According to Public Works Director Josh Lassiter, the owner of the property in question did do some damage digging up sewer lines from one residence to another that the city had to repair and the property has no running water. After discussion with city attorney Beau Pemberton and Chief Chandler, the board has decided to wait until the next court date on Feb. 21 to see if anything is done and if it is not, then they have agreed to let Pemberton move forward with action against the property owner for code violations.
Kenneth Williams from Parkway Street said that he has a house that sits in front of him on Highway 89 that has been falling apart since the tornado in 2021 and that no one has come to do anything with it and he’d like to see the board do something about it. Mayor Mark Maddox said, “I can tell you that the recorder and I have had a discussion about several properties in the city and I will be convening the condemnation board shortly.”
Donald Duncan of West Main Street and he said that back where the old shoe factory used to be where they piled up the debris from the tornado that he can’t drive back there anymore and he has a tree down in his backyard that is cut up, but he has no way to haul it out. He said that the people who hauled the debris off did not clean up very well afterwards. Maddox said that he would have Lassiter look at that area and see if Public Works can take care of that and recommended that Duncan get with the Weakley County Long Term Recovery Group regarding the tree.
The audit report was gone over by John Poole, CPA, who said that they did not find anything that gave them any concern in this year’s report. In the non-utility funds, the Capital Outlay which includes things that are not normal, every year expenditures had a lot that were caused by the tornado, Poole said that Dresden did a lot there and that the surplus would have been even higher-he said the numbers aren’t great, but based on what happened with the tornado they look good. Revenues are also up. Solid waste is in the negative which has to do with tornado related expenses which impacted that as well as the brush truck the city bought. The solid waste spent more than it took in. For the utility fund, the state requires to have a profit of at least every other year. “If you have losses in two consecutive years, your utility fund goes under review.” Dresden did not have losses in the utility fund last year, so, according to Poole, the year that Dresden is in now is “kind of a gray year-it’s not a big deal but the state will look at how Dresden’s doing at year end.” Poole said that any citizen that wants to ask him a question, he can be reached at 615-822-4177. The report is also on the TN Comptroller’s website where it is free for anyone to look at. The financial report was accepted by the board unanimously.
Community Development Block Grant
A2H Construction engineer Travis Martin spoke on the different projects the city could apply for regarding the CDBG. The project requires a 10% match from the city. Martin said that some projects score better as far as getting the grant than others do, but some possible projects for the board to look into were storm sirens, which traditionally do not score well according to Martin and could be done cheaper without the grant, sewer rehab, which has been unsuccessful in the past, parks and recreation project and floating wetlands project for water waste which typically scores well and would be the option most likely to succeed in getting the grant. The application is due the first week of April. The board said that they would have a decision made by the next board meeting.
Sewer Rehab Project and City Hall Update
Martin spoke on the sewer rehab project and said that it’s halfway done. The mapping portion has been started and good progress has been started. As far as the City Hall project is concerned, the final tech review will be in mid-March which is in line with the original goal. The sewer lines being put in for the Flower Box should also be underway very soon.
Vaughn Brothers Drainage
A motion was made to receive a bid on the project. The motion was put forward and unanimously approved.
Upcoming Board Meeting
The next board meeting will be held on Monday March 6 at 6 p.m. at the Civic Center.