/City looking into community center project 
City Council in gold letters on purple backgroundGraphic by Bell Jackson

City looking into community center project 

By Cady Inabinett 

The Montevallo City Council voted at their Aug. 8 meeting to allow the Dewayne Moore Foundation to conduct surveys to determine the feasibility of constructing a Montevallo Community and Recreation Center.  

Mayor Rusty Nix expressed support for building a community and recreation center in the Montevallo, saying, “This is something that we’ve needed in the city for years.” He also expressed eagerness to get the surveying process underway saying that the city, “needed to start the process,” in order to have plans to show potential investors. 

Other council members showed support for the idea as well. Council member Kenny Dukes pointed out that building a community and recreation center would provide another facility for Montevallo’s children to use for sports leagues, instead of solely relying on facilities at Montevallo High School. 

Council member Sonya Swords also pointed out that this is not a vote committing to building the facility, but, rather, the beginning of a process. 

“This isn’t saying we’ll build the facility,” Swords remarked, “This is getting the ball going to see is it feasible.” 

However, not all council members were sold on the idea. Council member Martha Eisenberg said she would like to be able to see some of the company’s other work. Nix responded to Eisenberg’s hesitancy by saying he thought Dewayne Moore would be present at the meeting to answer more specific questions, but Moore was not. Eisenberg was the only council member to vote against the motion later in the meeting.  

The Dewayne Moore Foundation will conduct two community need assessments and feedback surveys to determine the feasibility of the project. The costs of these surveys will total at $5,000, which is to come from the city’s American Rescue Plan funds. 

In addition to the surveys, the council approved expenses for several other projects. They unanimously voted to accept a $8,959.90 bid from CMIT Solutions to replace and configure security cameras at Parnell Memorial Library—whose current security camera system was described as obsolete by Nix. These funds will come from the city’s Regions Capital Reserve Account. 

Other approved expenses included $20,000 of city ARPA funds for repairs and improvements to the storm drains along the portion of Valley Street behind Montevallo High School and the purchase of a new Jaws of Life tool for Montevallo Fire and Rescue. 

Swords reported that, at a recent meeting, the Montevallo Development Cooperative District had discussed making repairs to walking trails at Orr Park. She urged the city to set aside funds for those repairs. The council unanimously approved this, passing a motion that would allocate no more than $45,000 of the city’s unallocated funds for the project. 

In the city’s ongoing process to find a provider for residential trash collection, unanimously voted to enter into a contract with Republic Services of Birmingham. Republic has been providing trash collection services for the city, but had chosen not to renew its contract with the city in May. The new contract would mean new services terms, and, likely, as Nix pointed out, higher prices. 

The next City Council meeting will be held Monday, Aug. 22, at 6 p.m. The meeting will be livestreamed on the city’s Facebook page. Citizens may also attend the meeting in person at City Hall. 

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Cady Inabinett is the editor in chief of The Alabamian. She’s majoring in English and double-minoring in political science and peace and justice studies. She enjoys reading, watching movies, caring for houseplants and generally just being pretentious in her free time.