Troy Mayor shares his plans

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 4, 2000

for the city with Rotary Club


Staff Writer

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Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford officially became mayor again Monday afternoon.

And, on Tuesday, he was discussing the city’s future with members of the Troy Rotary Club.

In about 30 minutes, the mayor gave a brief overview of the things he and the council would like to accomplish during the next four years.

He first touched on downtown revitalization.

Most people who have driven around the square have noticed the absence of the old barber shop/Flattops and Fiddles building. The city is planning to turn that area into parking that will tie that block into the square through landscaping and decorative lightposts.

As far as the work at the old post office building, that is only for stabilization purposes, Lunsford said.

Workers have been stripping the building to prepare for the architects’ final renderings.

Lunsford said a big fund-raising project for restoring the building and turning it into a fine arts facility should begin in earnest in the next couple of months.

Improvements will also be visible along U.S. 231 in the near future.

Lunsford said the Southeast Alabama Electric Cooperative and the city are working together to light the bypass by putting fixtures on existing poles.

On 231 near the municipal airport, the Alabama Department of Transportation will create an access road from the highway to the entrance of the airport at no cost to the city of Troy.

Lunsford said other improvements, such as resurfacing taxiways and building a meeting facility are also in the works.

Beginning later this week, Charles Henderson High and Middle Schools will have a police officer assigned to campus. With grant funds, the Troy Police Department has been able to put that additional security on the campuses.

But, many of these things wouldn’t be possible without grants and other financial assistance.

Right now, the mayor and city council are working to establish a budget to get the city through the next fiscal year.

The city’s coffers are taking a significant hit because of money being taken away from the gas district and the increase in the cost of electricity, even at a wholesale price.

Lunsford said the city could be without between $800,000 and $1 million because of those losses.

"We’ve told all the agencies we fund," Lunsford said of the problems the council is facing.

The problems are evident by the fact this is the first time in recent history that the budget hasn’t been passed by Oct. 1. Instead, the council will adopt a budget at its Oct. 10 meeting.

Lunsford was asked about the status of the old Wal-mart building at George Wallace Drive.

"That’s being looked at, now," Lunsford said of the consideration to tear it down under the dilapidated buildings law.

Because it is commercial property, the mayor said he would feel more comfortable if a "backup inspection" is conducted on the building, rather than solely relying on the city’s building inspector.