The City Commission met on Tuesday, July 19, 2022 at the Cordele City Hall Hearing Room in the presence of Chairman Joshua Deriso and Commissioners Vesta Beal-Shephard, Isaac Owens and Wesley Rainey. A speaker and resident, Davontae Hunt, was on hand to discuss the importance of allocating services to the west side of the town of Cordele, a project that Deriso advocated for. “Commissioners, my mandate for being here is to relay a simple message from your constituents,” Hunt said, “and that message is; don’t act like you can’t see us. The project, the Westside Alliance, has been a topic of discussion at several city commission meetings without gaining traction.” Don’t act like you can’t see that currently the west side doesn’t have a representative to speak to their needs and hasn’t had of representation that ushers in positive resources and support conducive to a vision for the future for the west side. “, said Hunt.
The agenda included items such as review and approval of contract with RPI Underground, Inc. for sanitary sewer upgrades on the McLeod Subdivision and review and approval of contract with Griffin Grading and Concrete, LLC for LMIG 2022 paving project. commission approved. The improvement contract has been approved. The committee has duly approved consideration of the application for the award of the Engineering Services Contract for the 2022 American Rescue Plan Act State Fiscal Recovery Funds Grants Award to Lanier Engineering. According to the city manager, Angela Redding Lanier Engineering was chosen because of her knowledge of the project, her familiarity with the community, the qualifications of the staff and experience in local administration. The review of Lynette Struther’s liquor license application for Lynne Food Mart regarding beer was on the agenda and was approved by the commission.
The discussion regarding a filming permit for the town of Cordele was as follows: “Most towns now have filming going on in the community,” says Redding, “there has been information regarding possible production companies that envision Cordele.” Redding explains that these companies must obtain a license for these filming rights. “For example, if a production company asks to close a street, there’s a fee,” Redding said, “if they want to set up a base camp on city property, there’s a fee you can charge with this base camp.” This agenda item was properly moved and seconded by the committee, approving a film permit for the town of Cordele.
The agenda also asked the committee to elect a temporary vice-president, which was not applicable. A consideration for the appointment of members of the ethics committee was the responsibility of Deriso. “We are at a point where we have to make two appointments to the ethics committee because two of our current ethics members are not qualified because they live out of town, which is the one of the reasons I was asking our commission to read the charter,” Deriso said. The city charter has been a resource and a point of contention in previous commission meetings. “I’m ready to appoint the person who I think should be on the committee and that person is Crandall Postell,” Deriso said. The second person named to the ethics committee by Deriso was Cordele resident and Westside Alliance advocate Davontae Hunt. didn’t approve the motion.”And that’s exactly why we find ourselves in the situation that we normally find ourselves in,” Deriso said, “because this commission continues to not do its job.”
Other items on the agenda include the possibility of hiring a grants writer for the city, which requires further discussion. “Let’s take this seriously,” Commissioner Owens said. The motion was duly moved and seconded by the committee. Another item on the agenda was to create a wellness center for healthy aging within the town of Cordele. “When it comes to health,” Commissioner Beal-Shephard said, “I think we need to reach out to what we have, we already have good programs.” The motion to approve the creation of a Wellness Center for Healthy Aging was not approved due to the consensus that the city already has programs and agencies in place for the city’s geriatric population . The next Town Commissioners meeting will be held on August 2, 2022 at the Cordele Town Hall Hearing Room at 5:30 p.m.