Snead considers vehicle expenses

Moving forward on plans to purchase a new fire engine, Snead town councilors reviewed offers from the two banks with offices in the town. Town clerk Rae Ware distributed quotes from HomeTown and Superior banks for loans to complete purchase of the $235,000 vehicle. Members noted one offer provided significant savings with a “tax free” rate. The council accepted Ware’s suggestion that she pursue a rate for the same designation from the other possible lender.

Councilors agreed to purchase a new engine for one of its 2003 police cruisers. They expressed confidence that with the $4,702.03 new engine and an almost new transmission from another ’03 surplus cruiser, the vehicle would offer the town nearly-new service.

Fire chief Lee Netherton won approval to spend $485.94 for a new PTO unit on his department’s tanker. Utilities superintendent Jeff Whited reported one of his department’s trucks was “messed up” again and was at the dealership. He noted that the same truck has had similar problems at least three other occasions.

Personnel matters

With councilor Trudy Campbell abstaining, members approved employing Alexis McCollum as a part-time police officer. Mayor Tim Kent explained the police had had difficulty manning its shifts and that McCollum would provide another less expensive option than regular overtime payments. Campbell had asked should the council await hiring a new chief before adding the employee. Members reaffirmed their decision from the past regular session to delay naming any new police auxiliaries until the chief is hired.

The council postponed naming a committee to review applications for the chief position, seeking legal clarifications. The Blount Countian questioned the legality of naming three councilors to the committee unless its deliberations are public.

Members accepted Hunter Mintz’s application for volunteer firefighter, pending background and physical checks. Netherton had highly recommended the 18 year-old. Under questioning, the chief explained that Mintz cannot drive the department vehicles nor enter burning structures until the age of 21.


Beyond routine matters the council announced upcoming events. The town has scheduled the ribbon cutting for its new senior citizens center for April 3 at 2 p.m. The council will hold its annual Easter egg hunt on April 11. Registration for the hunt will begin at 9:30 that morning with the hunt to follow at 11 in the town park.

James Campbell, Jack Freeman, Phillip McHan, and Charles Sanders joined T. Campbell and Kent for the March 23 session. The council holds its regular meetings the second and fourth Mondays of each month at 7 p.m. in the soon-to-beold senior citizens building.