The Fayette County Board of Education approved numerous personnel items during its June 9 meeting. The meeting was conducted by Board Vice-President Sam Sullivan, who presided in the absence of Board President Tom Hubbert, who was absent due to medical reasons. All other board members were present for the meeting. Prior to the start of the meeting, Josh Taylor gave a brief report on an audit conducted by the Alabama Department of Examiners of Public Accounts.
The Glen Allen Town Council held its regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday, June 2. The monthly meeting was held at the town’s community center to abide by social distancing recommendations in dealing with COVID-19. Councilwoman Gail Bircheat and Councilman Dustin Youngblood were absent. Mayor Allen J. Dunavant presented before the council Ordinance 2-2020, which recommended setting qualification fees for the upcoming August municipal elections.
A peaceful prayer rally was held on the lawn of the Fayette County Courthouse on Sunday, June 7, encouraging people to set aside racial differences to unite in a spirit of unity and love. The rally was the community’s answer to the civil unrest currently throughout the nation, where many protests to the recent racial injustices have turned violent. The rally in Fayette was instead a promotion of peace, unity and solidarity through prayer, love and the realization that all people are the same in God’s eyes.
After several weeks of having to quarantine residents due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Morningview Estates hosted a parade that allowed friends and family members to drive-through the parking lot to speak and wave to the residents. Approximately 100 brightly-decorated vehicles participated in the parade on Friday, June 5, much to the delight of both the residents and their family members.
Although Fayette County continues to have one of the lowest totals of COVID-19 cases within the state, the county has seen a dramatic rise in new cases during the past two weeks. At press time, Fayette County had 19 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, with eight new cases occurring within the past 14 days.
The Berry Town Council held its regularly scheduled meeting on June 1. Councilman Christopher Rice was absent, with all other council members present. A motion was made by Councilman Calvin Madison to table a resolution to declare two Chevrolet Silverado pickups as surplus items, pending a determination concerning the value of the pickups. The motion was seconded by Councilwoman Mary Sue Lollar and approved unanimously.
Governor Kay Ivey has awarded more than $17 million to provide relief for Alabamians who faced unemployment and economic difficulties as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. The Community Services Block Grants will be distributed to 20 community action agencies to provide services to qualified persons in Alabama. Community Service Programs of West Alabama Inc. (Bibb, Choctaw, Dallas, Fayette, Greene, Lamar, Perry, Sumter and Tuscaloosa counties) will receive $1.65 million in grant money.
Kristopher Gardner of Fayette is an amateur photographer and nature lover. He recently combined the two talents to photograph his friend “Peanut.” Gardner said that Peanut is a “tufted titmouse” that he befriended and coaxed into landing on his hand. He said that it took weeks of patiently waiting under a tree limb with his outstretched hand before Peanut finally decided he could be trusted.
The Fayette City Council failed to have enough members for a quorum to hold its May 26 meeting. Councilman Cedric Wilson and Councilman Eddy Campbell were in attendance for the meeting. Councilman Jason Cowart was on a military reserve assignment, Councilwoman Linda McCraw was on vacation and Councilman Jerry Nichols was absent from the meeting.
The Fayette County Commission hired a new director for the Senior Citizens Center in Berry during its May 26 meeting. Commissioner Barry Corkren was absent from the meeting, with all other commissioners present. The meeting opened with Commission Chairman Mike Freeman stating the commission needed to hold an executive session to discuss a legal matter. Commissioner Joe Acker made a motion to enter executive session, and the motion was seconded by Commissioner Billy Joe Rodgers. The commissioners present unanimously voted to enter executive session.
High schools in Fayette County have set their graduation dates for this school year. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, special guidelines and regulations will be followed at each school.
On Saturday, June 13, Alabamians and out-of-state visitors alike will have the opportunity to fish for free in most public waters, including both freshwater and saltwater. Free Fishing Day is part of National Fishing and Boating Week, which runs June 6-14. The event allows residents and non-residents to enjoy the outstanding fishing Alabama has to offer without purchasing a fishing license.
As businesses and activities continue to normalize during the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of cases of the virus in Fayette County has increased sharply within the past two weeks. Although Fayette County still is one of the counties with the fewest number of cases within the state, the counties numbers have seen a dramatic rise of seven new cases within the past 14 days. The total number of cases in Fayette County at press time was 16, with only Cleburne County posting a lower number of 15 cases.
This article is reprinted with permission from the “Starkville Daily News.” Ryan Phillips was at the scene of the accident, and gave a first-hand account concerning the ensuing rescue attempt. It’s a situation many emergency officials train for, but one that those who have experienced firsthand hope to never encounter again.
A Haleyville man was arrested and charged with an ethics violation in relation to his work as a probation officer. Michael Steven Painter, 49, of 5898 Newburg Road, Haleyville, was taken into custody Friday, May 15, and charged with an ethics violation of using a public office for personal gain and custodial sexual misconduct, according to Andy Hamlin, District Attorney for the 24th Judical Circuit in Alabama, which encompasses Fayette, Lamar and Pickens counties. He was booked into the Fayette County jail.