Newbern OKs facility for Carl Perkins Exchange Club

Thursday, May 18, 2017
Pictured above, the Newbern Board of Mayor and Aldermen is seen from within the newly constructed downtown Newbern safe room, co-location of the Dyer County Communications Center.

RACHEL TOWNSEND

rtownsend@stategazette.com

Tuesday night, the Newbern Board of Mayor and Aldermen convened for its regularly scheduled meeting. A change in venue, this month’s board meeting was held in the newly completed downtown Newbern safe room, soon to house the Dyer County Communications Center, a co-dispatch location for Dyer County and Newbern 911 operators.

Pictured above, Newbern dispatcher Jami Gadja is seen addressing the board with issues surrounding benefit changes, which Newbern dispatchers may experience during the transition of relocating into the Dyer County Communications Center.

With a relatively light agenda, board members discussed items on the agenda including the Carl Perkins Exchange Club, departmental updates, meeting times for discussion of the 2017-18 Newbern budget, and approval of Mike Winchester as the Director of Dyer County Communications Center.

Opening the meeting, retired police captain Bennie Greene acknowledged the time and efforts of traffic guards Sandra Harvey, Tabitha Bobo, and Betty Beard. The ladies were presented certificates of recognition, with Beard receiving a plaque of appreciation noting her many years of service to Newbern traffic control.

Newbern dispatcher Jami Gadja also addressed the board Tuesday night with concerns surrounding the potential change in benefits and salaries, which Newbern dispatchers may experience during the transition of relocating into the Dyer County Communications Center.

Pictured above, Bennie Greene is seen alongside traffic guards Sandra Harvey, Tabitha Bobo, and Betty Beard. Greene recognized and applauded the efforts and dedication of the women during Tuesday night’s meeting of the Newbern Board of Mayor and Aldermen.

According to City Recorder Jason Roberts, changes to benefit plans of Newbern dispatchers have yet to be established; however, Roberts and Newbern Mayor Justin Wright assured Gadja they would look further into her concerns and gather a response within a relatively short period of time.

Moving on to new business, Wright asked board members to consider a motion approving the donation of Oakview Recreational Center’s modular building to benefit the establishment of a Carl Perkins Exchange Club, which will serve counties of Dyer and Lake.

Wright says maintenance on the facility will be handled by the Carl Perkins Center.

Pictured above, Greene is seen presenting Beard with a plaque of recognition. Beard has been a valued traffic controller of the city of Newbern for the past 9 years.

With the deadline for the 2017-18 Newbern budget rapidly approaching, Wright and members of the board will be meeting to discuss the budget on June 13, at 2 p.m.

A motion to donate the facility to the Carl Perkins Exchange Club was unanimously approved by the board. A second motion was also approved by the board to prepare a lease agreement for the building, with a minimal annual renewable lease agreement. The amount of the lease agreement has yet to be decided.

Closing the meeting, board members made a motion approving Wright to hire 2 new street laborers for the Street Department.

In other business:

• Newbern Police Chief Richard Barnes announced that officer Randy O’ Dell was sent to Radar School and is now capable of training fellow officers of the department.

• The Dyer County Rescue Squad will be hosting an open house event on Saturday, May 20 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Members of the community are encouraged to attend.

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