A lot has been said on both social and local media sites about the issues that continue to plague the City of Decatur.
As we have previously done with several of the City Council members, The Register-Republic sat down Wednesday with Mayor Tab Bowling to discuss some of the concerns citizens have, as well as his ideas for solving them.
Right off the bat, you can tell that Mayor Bowling believes in this City… that there remains a huge amount of potential for growth, but growth that must be well managed.
Part of that growth process; according to the Mayor, is maintaining what already is in place. One hot topic these days is the grass and weeds that are not being dealt with as many in this City think they should be.
And the Mayor agrees. “We need to do a better job”, he said regarding the City’s thoroughfares. He said that at the next work session, he will present a “buffet” of items to the Council, such as maintenance. Part of that ‘buffet’ will include input from Department leaders like Jeff Dunlap; head of the Parks and Recreation Department. According to Mayor Bowling, the plan is to use more weed-eating and herbicides to handle the grass problem, especially on State roads such as the Highway 31 causeway and the entrance to the City on Highway 67. Bowling said such will be easier to deal with once the State knocks them down.
When asked about budget talks that will be coming up within a month or so, Bowling said that he would be looking to all the Department leaders to make recommendations so that revenues will be better in Fiscal Year 2018.
We asked the Mayor about potential cuts in the budget, cuts that some say will be necessary… especially to non-essential or non-profits. Given that Morgan County has already gone on record that budget cuts will likely cut or eliminate funding to various nonprofit’s, will Decatur try to make up the funding on some of those same groups?
While he could not speak for the Council, Mayor Bowling did say that he would like to have a budget that “does no harm on appropriations.” He went on by saying that he would like to “go a year without eating our own” and that “we need to support our community.”
The work session at which the Mayor will present some of his ideas to the City Council will be held on Monday, July the 31st at 5:00 pm. It will be located on the 7th floor of City Hall. The public is invited to attend.