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Board positions up for vote along with re-appointing

Will Phillips

Minden Press-Herald

During the City Council Meeting held on the evening of Monday, July 1st, the Councilmen had to vote on whether to appoint or re-appoint members of various boards and committees for Minden. The open positions were for Downtown Development Director, the Minden Housing Authority Board, the Minden Planning Commission, and the Industrial Development Board.

The first of the appointments was Mahala Hutto for Downtown Development Director. District B Councilman Terika Williams-Walker had some concerns, which she addressed when she said, “Because Pam Bloxom from District E was a representative for Ms. Hutto, then I think you should abstain from voting.”  “I don’t think that would have a bearing, just as a reference,” said Mayor Terry Gardner, after which Councilman Pam Bloxom said, “Past employer.” “Past partners,” said Councilman Vincen Bradford in response.  “No not partners, employer, and nearly 20 years ago,” said Bloxom, correcting him. 

Soon afterward the appointment of Hutto was brought to a vote. All councilmen voted in favor of the appointment, except for Pam Bloxom who chose to abstain. 

The second appointment was for reappointment of KaCheryl Jones to the Housing Authority Board. Before the vote, Williams had a few questions regarding the representation of the different districts on the Housing Authority Board. She asked Chunda Jones, Director of Minden Housing Authority, for the names of the board members and the districts they were from. “As far as I know, correct me if I’m wrong, you should have a member to represent each district,” said Williams-Walker. “In the bylaws that I found it said in the area, it didn’t say they have to be from each district,” said the representative. “I’m almost positive that you have to member from each district, as well as a resident,” said Williams-Walker. Later during the discussion, Jones quoted the revised statute when she said, “Every commissioner shall be a resident of the area of operation of the Housing authority which he or she has been appointed to serve,” said Jones It didn’t say district, it just said area of operation.”

The other concern was regarding a facility that’s had its usage restricted. “Honestly I have some reservations when it comes to the restricted usage of the facility,” said Williams-Walker. In response, the representative said, “If they get hurt, the first thing they’re gonna do is sue the Minden Housing Authority. So that’s what we’re looking into, the liability of it. We had some liability issues with something that went on, so that’s why right now the center is not being used for other things.” After some more discussion, the reappointment of Jones was brought to a vote. All council members voted in favor, except for Williams-Walker. 

The third appointment was for the re-appointment of Judy Hathorn to the Minden Planning Commission. Much like the last one, there were some questions regarding the diversity of the district. After a bit of discussion, Bloxom said “Herbert, I agree with what you’re saying, I just don’t think we can start implementing that today because the letter hadn’t gotten out to the commissions yet, that we had sent from the workshop. Perhaps we need to give them time to look and see what they’re representation is from each district.”

“I mean we have an available seat and appointment up right now,” said District A Councilman Herbert Taylor. “But Judy has already served and been on there and is trying to continue serving a full term,” said Boxom in response. 

“I’ll support you, if you give it time for the letters to go to the meetings, in order for them to understand what it is that we’re wanting in the future,” said Bloxom. “Actually, it’s not me its the six of you up there that go out and look for volunteers to serve on this commission. And they’re not easy to find, I’m warning you,” said Brent Cooley, representing the Minden Planning Commission in response. The motion ended up getting tabled, meaning the decision will be postponed until a future date. 

The fourth appointment was for the re-appointment of Dennis Miles to the Industrial Development Board. The vote passed unanimously with no discussion being had. 

The public is free to attend future City Council Meeting which is scheduled to take place on the first Monday of every month at the Minden City Hall.