Baileyton mourns loss of Councilman Walker Mead

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Photo courtesy of Cullman County

Image shows full Baileyton Town Council from late 2016: Wendell Peterson, Greg Griffin, Mayor Johnny Dyar, Windell Calloway, Myra Martin and the late Walker Mead.

BAILEYTON – The Baileyton Town Council met this week, with one notable absence. The council and the town of Baileyton are mourning the loss of Councilman Walker Mead, who recently lost his battle with cancer. The remainder of Mead’s salary will be given to his surviving family immediately to aid them in their time of need. (Look for a full profile on Mr. Mead this week at www.cullmansense.com.)

The council will nominate an individual to fill Council Place 1 for the remainder of the term on Friday, March 10 at 5 p.m.

In old business, the council discussed the purchase of three baseball plates for the upcoming youth baseball season. Each plate is estimated to cost $75; however, the council expects the plates to last many seasons.

The town sold a Blazer on GovDeals.com for a net gain of $832.50. “We are truly blessed,” commented Mayor Johnny Dyar. This is the first time that the town has sold a vehicle, and they don't expect any issues to arise from the sale. The town wishes to soon list a Ford Expedition on GovDeals.com, and passed a motion to list the truck at a minimum biding price of $4,000.

Regarding to renting the town hall basement, the council banned an individual in January from renting the premises due to damage done to the basement when the individual last rented in December; however, the individual requested that they be allowed to rent in the near future. This caused quite a debate among the council and numerous citizens of the town that care deeply about the health and safety of the town hall. The council voted to draft a rental contract since there was none in place prior to the damage done in December to address any possible damages. Among the possible solutions, the council discussed adding a deposit to the $35 fee of renting the basement for an event; however, the exact amount hasn’t been set.

In new business, the council approved the purchase of new countertops for the concession stand at the baseball field. It was bought to the council’s attention that the heat generated from various cooking appliances caused the paint to chip off the counter which is a health violation, according to the health department.

Also regarding the upcoming baseball season, Dyar reviewed the new Dizzy Dean pitching rules which will only allow a youth pitcher to throw 35 pitches in a game with a 48-hour resting period before they can pitch again. This has caused the town to revise when, and how many, games they wish to schedule once baseball season begins. The maximum amount of games allowed in a season is 24 to 26, depending on the age of the youth group.

The medical clinic building is still available for rent, in hopes that a doctor or a nurse practitioner will locate their practice in the town. The building is in superb condition, according to council members, and anyone interested may call the town clerk at 256-796-6447 Monday-Friday from noon-7 p.m.

In other news, Dyar, as President of the Cullman County Mayors and Commissioners Association, will be traveling to Montgomery with Mayors Kenneth Nail of Hanceville, Jerry Bartlett of Good Hope and Kenneth Kilgo of West Point to lobby about the governor’s proposed elimination of the sales tax on groceries and pharmacy items. Dyar did not confirm the association's position on the proposed changes, but commented, "The taxes mean a lot of money to small towns.”

Dyar announced his ambition to run for the East Cullman Water Board. "Someone from this end of the county needs to be on the East Cullman Water Board; someone needs to bring the issue up… people on fixed incomes cannot afford an increase to their water bill.” Dyar says he fears a monumental increase in water bill prices in the coming years without someone who is willing to represent those who simply cannot afford an increase.

The Baileyton Town Council meets on the first Monday of each month at 7 p.m. at Baileyton Town Hall. The public is welcome to attend.

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