It was a night of standing ovations – the first came following the presentation of the certificate marking the Statesville Police Department’s accreditation. The second came after Mayor Costi Kutteh presented a plaque to outgoing City Council member Arnold Watt recognizing his four years of service on Council. Watt lost his seat to John Staford in the October municipal election. Following the swearing in of the newly elected and re-elected Council members and the re-elected Mayor, more standing ovations took place. When Doris Allison was recognized as the City’s first female African-American to be elected, the crowd rose again.
The new Council’s first order of business was the election of a mayor pro tem. William Morgan nominated Michael Johnson, who has held the position for 10 years. C.O. Johnson nominated Steve Johnson, who was just elected as an at-large member. The vote was four to four, with Kutteh breaking the tie by voting for Steve Johnson. Kutteh said he believed the mayor pro tem position should be rotated among interested members. (Morgan, Roy West, Michael Johnson and Keith Williams voted for Michael Johnson. Allison, C.O. Johnson, Steve Johnson and John Staford voted for Steve Johnson.)
The new Council okayed the Police Department’s request to accept grant money to fund school resource officers and its request to apply for a grant for the department’s Domestic Violence Initiative.
Before adjourning, Staford asked staff to bring back information on how to change the City’s sign ordinance so that the size of American flags used by businesses was not restricted.
The old Council approved funding the Iredell Museums $10,000 for operations out of the occupancy tax fund.
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