City councilors spent more than one hour beh ind closed doors Thursday night before unanimously approving a $350,000 budget adjustment for a proposed settlement on a lawsuit. The transfer of money from the cityâ€™s reserve funds to its damage claims was voted on as the last agenda item during councilâ€™s regular monthly meeting.
The vote came after no public discussion among councilors. City attorneys, the council and the city manager discussed threatened or pending litigation during a closed session prior to the regular meeting.
Interim Roswell Police Chief Dennis Kintigh was the only other city official to sit in on the meeting. Kintigh and other officials declined comment on the vote, citing pending litigation.
Mayor Del Jurney would say only that officials will â€œmake sure that statements are made … and questions will be answeredâ€ when the â€œopportunity presents itself.â€ Councilors spent nearly the majority of the meeting discussing an agenda item that recommended extending Roswellâ€™s advertising contract with Rick Johnson & Company Inc. through June 20, 2011.
The contract was recently extended for three months and was slated to expire Nov. 15. The original extension was meant to give officials time to draft a Request for Proposal for the possibility of finding a new advertising agency. â€œWhatâ€™s taking us so long?â€
Councilor Judy Stubbs asked, saying that she agreed with at least two other members who thought a more than seven-month extension was not necessary. Of ficials eventually agreed to spend $30,000 for a three-month extension, with the agreement to fast track a new RFP to be ready by Dec. 1.
The council also approved four bids for service and supplies, including $200,000 for a mechanical street sweeper, $151,375 for a South Washington Avenue waterline and $70,837 for a dump truck.
Councilor Rob McWilliams was the only member who voted against the bid recommendation for the street sweeper, saying that he only sees the cityâ€™s sweepers kicking up dirt and didnâ€™t think they did an efficient job for the price tag. â€œCouncilor McWilliams, that might be the reason we need a new one,â€ joked Councilor Steve Henderson.
Also during the night, City Manager Larry Fry received a round of applause from councilors at the meetingâ€™s conclusion, for having attended his first council meeting under his new job title as city manager.