Tag: Jefferson County Commission
A trio of Jefferson County commissioners met today with the Birmingham Water Works Board, asking the board to consider matching the county’s $1.25 million commitment to help residents who struggle with rising water and sewer rates. Read more.
When the last of the Jefferson County Commission’s budget hearings were complete Thursday, commissioners decided on a nonbinding, nonpartisan 3-2 vote to support the support budget for 2020, which allots discretionary funds to commissioners as well as money for transit, sewer fee assistance and other programs.
Finance Chairman Joe Knight, a Republican, voted with Democratic commissioners Lashunda Scales and Sheila Tyson in favor of the action. Commission President Jimmie Stephens and Commissioner Steve Ammons voted no.
The complete budget will be considered for official approval at the commission’s Aug. 8 meeting. Read more.
County Manager Tony Petelos will have to try again next time in his effort to be able to hire and fire contract physicians at Cooper Green Mercy Health System because the matter was blocked from consideration at today’s meeting of the Jefferson County Commission.
Because the resolution was presented as new business, all commissioners had to agree to consider it at their meeting at the Bessemer Courthouse. Commissioners Lashunda Scales and Sheila Tyson voted no, thus keeping it from being introduced into the meeting.
It is the second time this week the matter has come before the panel.
The proposal was initially a late add to the commission’s committee meeting Tuesday at the courthouse in Birmingham. That discussion ended with commissioners saying they needed to hear more before giving the county manager the ability to hire and fire contracted doctors at its clinic for indigent health care.
Update: The commission in its Thursday meeting approved the nominations as introduced.
The Jefferson County Commission voted Tuesday on the commissioners they intend to nominate to the UAB Healthcare Authority and Sheila Tyson, chair of the committee dealing with Cooper Green Mercy Health System, was not included.
A majority of commissioners agreed that chief financial officer John Henry should be recommended for a 2-year term, and county manager Tony Petelos and Commissioner Joe Knight to 1-year terms.
“I see the good ole boy network is still alive,” Tyson said. “If they wanted to start a road committee out of the gas tax and they didn’t want you (Stephens) on there and you are the chair of roads and transportation, you would have a problem with that. But it’s all right not to put me on the committee where I sit and have been working on.”
Tuesday’s vote was not final but will go before commissioners again Thursday. Read more.
Less than a week after the Jefferson County Commission hired a deputy director at Cooper Green Mercy Health System, Executive Director Armika Berkley today resigned from her position. Her last day is Aug. 16.
Efforts to reach Berkley were unsuccessful.
County manager Tony Petelos acknowledged receipt of the letter and said Berkley’s resignation has been accepted. He said the resignation was unanticipated.
“She’s just moving on,” Petelos told BirminghamWatch. “She’s been with us over two years now. We were very fortunate to have her during this period of time.
“It’s been difficult at Cooper Green over the past several years with the work that’s going on and the lack of staff that we have,” he said. “We’ve lost some key positions over there.” Read more.
Jefferson County Commissioners were told today that the trash going into the county’s Mount Olive Landfill will be increasing, ultimately doubling from up to 1,500 tons a day to up to 3,000 tons a day.
Santek Environmental of Alabama leases and operates the landfills.
The additional trash is allowed under the landfill’s permit, which was approved in 2004. Read more.
Deputy Jefferson County Manager Cal Markert talks about the cooperative effort between the county and the city of Bessemer to make upgrades to Academy Drive. The project aligns with the ongoing construction of the Amazon Fulfillment Center. Watch the video.
After two months of waiting, Jefferson County Commissioner Lashunda Scales wanted some answers today concerning the health care authority being designed by UAB Health System and Jefferson County and expressed concern that commissioners are not more involved in the process.
County manager Tony Petelos said answers are still to come as he and leaders at UAB continue discussions in the due diligence phase of the negotiation to form a new system for indigent health care.
“Our legal department has been working with UAB’s legal department and HR department also,” Petelos said during the commission committee meeting. “We’re very, very close to bringing you something in the very near future.”
Scales expressed concern about the lack of involvement of herself and her fellow commissioners.
“Although we have the county manager, Tony Petelos, and his staff to operate on behalf of the commission, I do believe that the commission themselves should have oversight in terms of what is being negotiated,” she said. Read more.
Jefferson County is picking up the tab for bus service for some unserved areas through the end of the current fiscal year.
Commissioners passed a resolution at their meeting on Thursday to provide transit for people living in Adamsville, Forestdale, Brighton, Lipscomb, Fultondale, Gardendale and Fairfield.
“This isn’t about MAX (Metro Area Express),” Commission President Jimmie Stephens said. “This is about citizens and being able to serve the citizens. These citizens in these communities have been bypassed and the doors were shut. We’re going to give them the opportunity to receive the benefits from MAX to go to the doctor, to go to and from work, and to go to and from getting their medication. If they utilize this, it will be $100,000 very well spent.” Read more.
Bingo was the subject of a lengthy discussion this morning as members of the Jefferson County Commission met for their committee meeting.
Commissioner Lashunda Scales sought clarity on the county’s stance on bingo in general and electronic bingo machines that are being licensed for operation by a number of Jefferson County municipalities. Read more.