Mayor praises incident-free homecoming

Mayor Debe Hollingsworth issued congratulations and gratitude to the public and Police Chief Jeff Hubanks and his officers at Monday night’s city council meeting, boasting that there were no reported security issues during the weekend’s University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff homecoming activities and a Saturday night Music on Main outdoor concert.

“Chief Hubanks gave me the good news this morning,” Hollingsworth told The Commercial before the meeting. “I want to announce it publicly. That’s an accomplishment that I think should make everyone proud. I think it’s reflective of positive changes in our city.”

The mayor said UAPB’s homecoming was a “tremendous success.”

“I think it’s wonderful that we had such an eventful weekend that was so non-eventful,” she joked. “With all the visitors we had to our city, the fact that there were no security problems show that our police did a marvelous job and the event participants are equally dedicated to helping to make sure that people can feel safe and be safe in Pine Bluff.

“Most of our problems in the past have been minor, I’m told, but to go through all the activities we had here and not have a single problem is indicative of better things to come,” Hollingsworth said.

During the meeting’s business session, the council unanimously approved four resolutions and heard second readings on three and initial readings on two ordinances.

The resolutions:

• Reappointed Evelyn J. Blunt, Steven W. Huselton and Lou Taylor to the planning commission (separate resolutions); and

• Declared certain houses, buildings and/or structures as nuisances and ordered their abatement, as amended.

The ordinances given second readings call for:

• Amending current ordinances to define “replacement cost” as the term relates to the city’s inspection codes;

• Accepting a dedication of a street being offered to the city by the Trotter family; and

• Amending the uniformed policies and procedures as related to interim appointments of the police and fire chiefs.

Ordinances gaining first readings call for:

• Amending current ordinances regarding payment by labor of fines assessed for misdemeanor convictions or code violations; and

• Amending current ordinances regarding purchases and competitive bidding.

The latter three ordinances were referred to the public safety committee for additional consideration.