Dec. 25, 2013 — Attorney Derrick Willis has been selected as the new Olive Hill City Attorney. Willis holds a private practice in Grayson and also serves as Asst. Commonwealth’s Attorney.
The appointment was made at the City Council's regular monthly meeting Tuesday night. The group conducted interviews with several candidates for the vacant City Attorney position.
Shortly after the meeting was called to order, Council entered closed session in order to interview the short list of candidates for the job.
Attorneys Derrick Willis and Brandon West interviewed for the position. Grayson attorney Melinda Haynes was also being considered and was expected at the meeting for an interview, but was not present.
After the interviews were concluded, Mayor Kenny Fankell recommended that Willis fill the City Attorney vacancy and the City Council unanimously agreed.
Fankell confirmed Wednesday afternoon that Willis had accepted the position and was already getting up to speed on litigation involving the city.
The Council also approved a three percent raise for city employees, which Mayor Fankell says was anticipated when drafting the budget for this fiscal year.
“We already had that cost built in to the budget for this year, so the raise won't hurt us,” said Fankell.
Because the city mostly employs utility workers, funds for the raises will be drawn from the utility fund, which unlike the city's general fund budget, is relatively healthy.
In other business, the Council unanimously voted to begin the process of purchasing a new garbage truck, as well as a bucket truck.
Both vehicles have been a source of concern for the city due to ongoing maintenance issues.
The garbage truck is still under warranty and the city will look at trading it toward the purchase of a new one. Upgrading will cost the city roughly $14,000 based on recent estimates.
Purchasing a new bucket truck for use by the city's utility workers, however, poses a bigger financial problem for the city as new models can cost anywhere between $110,000 and $135,000.
After discussion, the Council decided it will likely use the bulk of its $170,000 refund from American Electric Power to purchase the bucket truck.
The next regular council meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 21 at the Senior Community Center.
Joe Lewis can be reached at email@example.com or by telephone at 286-4201.