The Fayette County Board of Education discussed coaching supplements for the upcoming school year during a work session prior to its Aug. 4 meeting. Prior to the work session and subsequent meeting, John Aaron took the oath of office as the board’s District 1 representative, replacing Waldon Tucker who resigned from the board earlier this year. The board tabled a motion at its last meeting to cut the coaching supplements by 50 percent if the teams did not play this year.
The Berry Town Council voted to certify the candidates for Berry mayor and council offices as elected to their respective positions during its Aug. 3 meeting. All council members were present for the meeting. Since only one candidate qualified for each of the upcoming Berry mayor and city council positions, the sitting council declared the candidates elected to their respective positions. The officers will start their new terms on Nov. 2.
Fayette County saw its weekly total of new cases increase from 174 on Aug. 3 to 212 on Aug. 10. The 38-case increase is the largest seven-day increase yet for Fayette County. The county’s new cases of the coronavirus have more than doubled in less than a month. On July 13, the Alabama Department of Public Health showed only 90 cases of the virus reported within the county. Fayette County’s death toll from the COVID-19 virus remains at five.
The Fayette City Council held a special called meeting on Monday, Aug. 10 to appoint poll workers for the upcoming municipal election. Councilman Jason Cowart and Councilwoman Linda McCraw were absent from the meeting. The council had previously appointed poll workers at an earlier meeting, but replacement workers had to be selected to replace the ones that would no longer be serving. The poll workers approved for the Fayette municipal election are: Electronic Machine Coordinator, Billy Joe Howton; Chief Inspector, Barry Lowe; Inspector, Dottie Brasher; and Chief Clerk, Anita Morris.
The Glen Allen town council met on Tuesday, Aug. 4 at the Glen Allen Community Center. All council members were in attendance for the monthly meeting. Addressing items of old business, Mayor Allen J. Dunavant announced that municipal elections would not be held during the upcoming municipal election cycle, as only one candidate had qualified for each position for the town’s governing body. He acknowledged that Joel Isham would be a newcomer to the town council, serving as councilman in Seat Two, as councilwoman Gail Bircheat decided not to seek re-election for that position.
The Fayette County Commission voted to hire Phillip Rushing as a temporary, part-time maintenance supervisor during its July 27 meeting. Commissioner John Underwood was absent, with all other commissioners in attendance. The Fayette County Commission is currently without a maintenance supervisor, and the commission had inquired about the availability of former supervisor Rushing to fill in until the position can be filled with a full-time person. Rushing held the position for more than 10 years prior to his retirement last year.
The parents of students who were juniors and seniors at Fayette County High School during the 2019-2020 academic year held a prom for the students at Timber Valley Lodge on Saturday, Aug. 1. The parents wanted the students to enjoy one of the big social events of the year, since so many of their events had been cancelled or postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Alabama’s new cases of the COVID-19 virus again increased by nearly 11,000 new cases last week, with the weekly death toll dropping from 189 new deaths to 134. Although the numbers in Alabama are slightly better than last week, the number of new coronavirus cases remains alarmingly high as school is scheduled to reopen on Aug. 19. Fayette County saw its weekly total of new cases increase from 23 the previous week to 30 new cases for the seven-day period ending Aug. 3. Fayette County’s death toll from the COVID-19 virus remains at five.
The descendants of James William Smith and Rebecca Little Smith held their annual Smith - Little Reunion at the Paul Hubbert Pavilion, located on the campus of Hubbertville School, on Saturday, Aug. 1. The reunion was a little different this year, with the attendees practicing social distancing and wearing facial protection due to the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent restrictions. Although the pandemic kept some of the usual participants from attending this year’s event, a few family members were able to attend for the first time in many years.
The Fayette County Board of Education selected John Aaron to fill the vacancy left on the board by the resignation of Waldon Tucker in District 1 during its July 21 meeting. The action was taken at the conclusion of the board’s regular agenda and before the meeting was adjourned. Board Member Keith Madison was absent from the meeting, with the remainder of the board members present.
Qualifying has ended and the candidates are set for the Aug. 25 municipal election in Fayette. There will not be an election in the towns of Belk, Glen Allen and Berry, as no more than one candidate has qualified for each position. In Belk, incumbent Sherry Spack qualified for Seat One, incumbent Bill Davis qualified for Seat Two, former Council Member Karen Strickland will again be a part of the Belk governing body in Seat Three, and incumbent Jeanie Hollingsworth qualified for Seat Four.
Dr. Jon Emory Sanford, 79, a long-time resident of Fayette, passed away on July 25 at Kirkwood by the River Skilled Nursing facility after extended illnesses. A private service will be held on Friday, July 31 at the Fayette Church of Christ and will be conducted by his sons. Grandsons will serve as pallbearers. Dr. Sanford was born on Sept. 14, 1940 on the family farm in Manchester, Walker County.
The Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) has cleared the way for high schools in Alabama to participate in sports beginning this fall. Officials met in Montgomery last week, establishing the groundwork for fall football practices to begin this week and games to be played beginning on Aug. 20-21. The AHSAA released a pamphlet called “AHSAA Best Practices” that details certain guidelines and rules that will need to be followed if the return of high school sports is successful.
Alabama’s new cases of the COVID-19 virus continued at an alarming pace last week, with an increase of more than 11,000 new cases and 189 new deaths. The number of cases hit an all-time daily high increase of 2,283 new cases from July 22 – 23. The news was slightly better for Fayette County, which registered an increase of 23 new cases and no additional deaths for the seven-day period from July 20-27. Last week, Fayette had a seven-day increase of 31 new cases and four additional deaths reported by the Alabama Department of Public Health.
The Fayette County Board of Education held a work session on Thursday, July 16 to present a tentative working “roadmap” for reopening school in Fayette County this fall. All current board members were present. Superintendent Jim Burkhalter said that the scheduled start date for students remains Aug. 20. He said that on-line, remote and virtual classes during the new school year would be much more difficult and challenging then the classes that the school system finished the spring semester with. “Our objective is to be as safe and efficient a school system as possible,” Burkhalter said.
Former Berry City Councilman Wesley Jacobs and political newcomer Robert Townley were the big local winners in the July 14 Republican primary runoff election. Jacobs defeated Roger Morrison 395 (58.52 percent) to 280 (41.48 percent) to secure his nomination for the County Commission District 4 seat. Current District 4 Commissioner James Knight was defeated during the March 3 primary, and since there will be no Democratic opposition for the commission seat in November, Jacobs is virtually assured a position on the commission.