P. O. Box 1589
400 West 19th Street
Jasper, AL 35501
Phone 205-221-2100

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See the equipment upgrade that Street Dept employees are proud to have.

Sunday alcohol sales election set for July 10


A special election to determine whether residents in the city want to legalize Sunday alcohol sales will be held Tuesday,  July 10.  Polls will be open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. Jasper City Council members voted unanimously Tuesday morning to set the date for the election.

“I’m extremely pleased that the voters in the city will have the opportunity to vote on this,” Mayor David O’Mary said following Tuesday’s council meeting. “There are supporters on both sides of the issue. There are many who think having this could create significant economic development. If this vote is successful, we should know that in the not-too-distant future.”

O’Mary said state Sen. Greg Reed and Rep. Connie Rowe helped get the bill through the state legislature, which was the first step to putting the issue to a vote in the city.

“This issue was a council decision, and our legislative delegation of Sen. Reed and Rep. Rowe supported this council and helped get this local bill in place,” O’Mary said. “One of things when you’re elected to office is that you’re sworn to uphold the Constitution, and the Constitution says the people have the right to vote (on an issue), and that’s what’s going to happen.”

O’Mary said while the issue may be divisive, each side has an opportunity to make its argument for or against the issue known.

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“The people who are for it have the right to support their position, and the people opposed to it have the right to support their position,” he said. 

If the bill passes, the city could see an economic boom. The mayor said property owners adjacent to Interstate 22 and other high traffic areas have told city leaders they have talked with national restaurants wanting to locate in the city. Most have been hesitant to do so because of the lack of alcohol sales on Sundays. 

“They tell us they have pretty firm commitments from eating establishments if it is successful,” O’Mary said. “If that happens, certainly that will be another source of tax revenue for the city, and that’s what we live on.”

O’Mary said there’s no definitive answer as to how much revenue could be generated for the city if the bill passes. “We don’t really have a measuring stick for that,” he said.

A recent meeting of the Alabama League of Municipalities may have provided somewhat of an answer, O’Mary added. “We met with a group of folks from cities the size of Jasper, and pretty much everyone there was from a city that had approved Sunday alcohol sales. They all felt like it had been a nice boost to their city’s revenue.”

The timing of the election should still allow for any city residents to register to vote in the election, O’Mary said.

In other business, council members:

•approved minutes of the April 3 council meeting.

•recognized Clayton Mehearg, who asked the council for its continued support of the Walker County Sports Hall of Fame.

This year’s hall of fame induction is set for Aug. 4 at New Prospect Baptist Church 

•appointed Dr. Larry Baker to the city’s Medical Clinic Board at O’Mary’s recommendation.

•approved the nomination of Jack Allen to the County Board of Equalization. Allen will fill the position held by Fred Nichols, who recently resigned because of health issues.

•adopted a resolution to award the bid for Phase 1 of the city’s 2018 paving project to Dunn Construction, which tendered a bid of $1.886 million. The bid was approximately $300,000 less than what was estimated for the project, city purchasing agent Derleda Abrom said.

•adopted a resolution to submit an application to the Alabama Department of Transportation for grant assistance for the city’s sidewalks project that will build handicapped accessible sidewalks in downtown Jasper. Eighty percent of the project will be paid for with federal money through ALDOT, but does require a 20 percent match from the city. Plans for handicapped accessible sidewalks are designed by an engineer in compliance with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act, O’Mary said. 

•adopted a resolution to place two properties under the city’s nuisance abatement ordinance. Both fall under the ordinance after being deemed unsafe structures.

•heard from O’Mary, who announced that Brent McCarver has been hired as the city’s revenue compliance officer. McCarver’s primary job is to collect monies owed to the city, including for business licenses, sales taxes and rental taxes. McCarver was officially hired for the position on Dec. 4. Since assuming the job, he has been instrumental in collecting more than $50,000 owed to the city. “These are not bad people, they just were not being compliant in paying what’s owed to the city,” McCarver said. 

•heard from James Nelson, who lives on Jones Dairy Road and expressed concerns about traffic issues near Walker Medical Diagnostics’ offices.

•heard from Wanda Triggs, owner of the Curiosity Shop, who has concerns about safety issues near her business.

•heard from Leon Harton, who complained about issues of city streets being patched.

 Reprinted from the Daily Mountain Eagle with permission.

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Located in northwest Alabama on Interstate Highway 22, Jasper is a thriving retail hub, center of growing industrial development and home to approximately 14,000 residents. Enjoying one of the top ranked education systems in the State of Alabama, ongoing renovated Park & Recreation programs and its close proximity to the outstanding recreation areas such as Smith Lake, Bankhead National Forest and the Warrior River makes it an attractive area for relocation. Mayor David O'Mary would like to welcome you to our city and web site.

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