City, state to partner for lake

Published 3:00 am Wednesday, December 24, 2014

The City of Troy is partnering with the state fisheries department to bring new life to the Pike County Lake.

On Tuesday, the Troy council members voted to enter into a memorandum of understanding with the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to develop a long-term multi-purpose recreational facility at the state-run lake.

“The state has a desire to partner with the city in developing the Pike County Lake,” Mayor Jason Reeves told the council. “The state has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars out there improving the lake and we’re going to build a joint, multi-use facility out that that will open the lake for recreation to everyone, from children to senior citizens.”

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

The state owns the 400-acre lake property and has closed the lake to the public while repairs are being made to the dam and infrastructure. Reeves said plans tentatively call for a spring 2016 opening of the new recreational area.

The city and the state will share the cost of the new structure, estimated at $650,000. It will include a concession area, bathroom facilities and a multi-purpose area for gatherings and events.

“I think it’s important that the citizens of Troy and Pike County know this council is diligently working to provide recreation for all our citizens,” said Councilwoman Dejerilyn Henderson. “I remember my mother taking me out to the Pike County Lake to go fishing as a child … and I’m excited about being able to open that again to the public.”

In other business on Tuesday, the council:

• Accepted the resignation of former Mayor Jimmy Lunsford from the Southeast Alabama Gas District Board and appointed Mayor Reeves to the board through October 2016. “I appreciate the council appointing me to this board,” Lunsford told members during the work session. “But I’ve really gotten involved in my private business and it’s time that I resign.”

He also told council members that Troy benefits from the gas district. “Three years ago, the City of Troy got the third largest distribution, and there was 3.5 percent between us and No. 2 … this year, we’re No. 2. And to put that in perspective for you, for ever percentage point we increased, that’s about $52,800 in distribution from the gas district.”

The city received more than $850,000 from the gas district this year.

• Contracted with Rice Advisory LLC, owned and operated by Rush Rice, to provide financial and investment advice to the city. “For the first time the city will have someone working on our behalf to help us coordinate with the underwriters and to give us advice in financing issues … it will be very beneficial to all of us,” Reeves said. “We anticipate going into the market next year (for financing) so the time is right for us to talk about this.”

Rice said his company will not receive a monthly stipend from the city but will be paid from the proceeds of any bond or financing project, with a cap of $50,000 on his fee. “We get paid when we get you an outcome,” he told the council members during the work session.

• Approved the purchase of two new trucks for the utilities department. Ken Cox Ford was the low bidder, at a cost of $22,666.28 per vehicle.

• Recognized the District 5 yard of month recipient, Gerald Dicks.