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New alderman set to tour all city-owned property

Newly elected McMinnville officials will be walking through a site inspection of city property to prepare them for the learning curve that awaits.
“With the help from city administrator David Rutherford, I have talked to him about offering an orientation for new board members,” said Mayor Jimmy Haley. “We are already in the planning process with MTAS and others.”
MTAS, or the Municipal Technical Advisory Service, was established by the Tennessee General Assembly. The organization is a technical assistance provider with consultants who specialize in most areas of municipal operations. The consultants provide assistance in city halls throughout the state.
An orientation with MTAS will, among other things, explain accounting responsibilities, steer goal setting, devise citizen participation approaches, provide legal opinions, evaluate personnel strategies, address wastewater problems, guide solid waste decisions, and answer public works questions.
A session with MTAS will help ensure board members’ optimism includes a healthy dose of reality and legality.
“We have a new optimism here and we are going to try to make things happen, but government is sometimes a slow wheel to turn so we will have to do thing legally and in the proper procedure,” said Haley.
Aldermen will also be looking outside the box and the board room. A site inspection is being arranged of city property, such as the Blue Building, Park Theatre, McMinnville Civic Center, Public Works, and the city’s water and wastewater treatment plants.
The Park Theatre and Blue Building are two hot topics because city voters recently approved spending up to $2 million to restore the Park Theatre, but rejected spending up to $6 million to renovate the Blue Building. Neither referendum is binding, which means the city can proceed with the projects or reject them.
Haley says a site inspection and meeting city employees is part of his desire to build a partnership, which is one of his future goals.
“A site inspection will give the aldermen a chance to familiarize themselves with the properties the city actually owns and to meet department directors and the other city employees,” said Haley. “By partnering with our wonderful city employees, the citizens and all the volunteer groups, I think this board will fill the wants and needs of our city.”
No date has been set for the orientation or the site inspection.
“We are trying to find common dates for everyone,” said Rutherford. “We have contacted MTAS about offering a strategic planning session. We haven’t received a date.”

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