At the end of the Wetumpka City Council meeting Monday, councilmember Lewis E. Washington Sr. asked Mayor Jerry Willis for an update to the conclusion of City of Wetumpka v. Alabama Power Company.
“I want to know what the cost was (for the court case) and who the money was paid to,” Washington said. “I’ve been asked and it’s bad because I have to tell people I don’t know.”
Willis said the court ruling came back in favor of Alabama Power.
“The Public Service Commission has been granted authority over right-of-ways in municipalities around the state of Alabama,” Willis said. “That is the decision that was given to us.”
Willis said it was a counsel’s recommendation to not appeal the court’s decision.
“We felt real comfortable with the case that we had,” Willis said. “A child could have read what we read. It was that plain and simple, but you don’t always get the verdict you want.”
Willis said the council voted to enter into the lawsuit and while the city lost in court, the city is still moving forward.
“Once the court process started, (the city) was not in control of what was to occur next,” he said. “The power company went above and beyond to help us when the tornado struck.”
Willis told Washington he does not have a final dollar amount spent by the city pursuing the lawsuit.
The council also approved the purchase of $20,209 in safety netting for the Wetumpka Sports Complex located on Hwy. 14.
Public Works director Tex Grier said the five fields will receive new netting before spring baseball season begins.
“It is usually a week to 10 days from the day we place an order until we receive the netting,” he said. “Then we are looking at a week to put it up.”
Grier also updated the council on progress to repair the tornado damage done to the city’s river walk and street lights located along Marshall Street and Tuskeena Street.
“A lot of the posts were damaged, others were not damaged,” Grier said. “Some of the concrete was pulled up. Right now, the concrete has been repaired on all the posts. All the posts are back in place. Right now, we are waiting on the globes.”
Grier said he does not have a timeline as to when this project will wrap up.
“I’m at the mercy of the manufacturer,” he said.
In other action, the council:
• Approved the city to pay $11,425.37 of an annual interest expense for financing the purchase of the old Faith Rescue building located next to the Wetumpka Civic Center
• Granted permission for Elmore County Family Resource Center to host its second annual family fun day April 4 at Gold Star Park
• Heard the first reading to grant permission to purchase grandstands and a press box for Wetumpka’s new athletic complex
• Approved the minutes of the Dec. 18 council meeting
The council’s next meeting is 6 p.m. Jan. 20.