(Editor’s note: White Hall Mayor Noel Foster was scheduled to deliver his third State of the City address to the White Hall Council Tuesday evening.)
I am honored to serve as your mayor for the City of White Hall, and I thank you for being here and allowing me this opportunity to share with this council and the citizens of White Hall a report on the state of our city.
White Hall is and always has been a great city because of our wonderful citizens: Our commitment to one another, our sense of community, and our strong work ethic. White Hall is a great place to live, raise a family, and work.
Tonight, I am pleased to report that our city is strong and our future is bright. We continue to see residential and commercial growth in our city.
The White Hall Public Works Department has been busy through the year with construction, growth and maintenance. New water services were installed, water meters were read monthly, sewer stoppages were removed, and sewer-pumping stations were maintained and kept in good operating condition.
Large drainage culverts were replaced and asphalt was repaired on Green Oaks Lane and Abby Lane. Church Street and Michael Ann Drive were repaired and finished with a complete overlay.
The White Hall Volunteer Fire Department has provided another wonderful year of service to our community. The department is composed of 25 firefighters and nine fire trucks. More than 73 calls for service within the city limits of White Hall were responded to, along with several mutual aid calls outside the city.
Firefighters met three times a month and trained once a month. They have conducted community fire education programs, installed smoke alarms, taught fire safety in our schools and performed truck, station and equipment maintenance. The department has continued to demonstrate the best that White Hall has to offer and named Bill Beadle as the “Volunteer Fireman of the Year.”
I am pleased to report that the new fire sub-station located on Hospitality Drive is well underway. We received a $10,000.00 General Improvement Fund grant from (former) state Rep. Toni Bradford to help with the construction of the new fire station. The volunteer firemen and Public Works employees will now work to finish the interior. We hope to have the station in service soon.
This year has proven to be both active and rewarding for the White Hall Police Department. Currently, the department consists of 15 full-time officers, with three of those officers being school resource officers, two administrative assistants, and 11 part-time II Officers. Their dedication and hard work continues to control and decrease crime in our city. The school resource officers have taught drug, alcohol, and tobacco programs in the White Hall School District.
The part-time II officers volunteered an estimated 1,800 hours. They worked school activities, baseball and softball events, Founder’s Day, and White Hall City Park activities.
Thanks to the local businesses and attendees for their support, the 2012 Policeman’s Ball was a great success. The proceeds are disbursed throughout the year to various local charitable and community programs, such as scholarships to graduating seniors.
Finally, the administration continues to recognize excellence within the department as Elizabeth Boyer was named the “Volunteer Officer of the Year”.
The police and fire volunteer programs continue to display excellence in their dedicated contributions of service to the City of White Hall.
The property for the Community Center and Aquatic Park, which is located at 9801 Dollarway Road, has been cleared. City officials have looked at several facilities across the state. The architect and engineers are finalizing proposed designs. We hope to present those plans for final approval to the Advertising and Promotion Commission soon. It is our hope that construction will begin later this year. I ask for your patience as we move this large project forward.
This year the city has plans to build a new museum, which will be located at the current location on Dollarway Road. Preserving our city’s history is very important to us all.
In addition, we will make improvements to the amphitheater and remodel the community building located in the city park. It is important to this council that we maintain city buildings, parks and property so that our citizens can use these facilities and features for years to come.
I want to thank all of the city employees for their hard work and all of the community volunteers who make this city a great place to live.
In conclusion, we as your elected officials will continue to manage the city’s business in a responsible manner and continue moving the city forward. We look forward to working with you, our citizens, in continuing to make White Hall a wonderful quality of life community. Please call upon us with any suggestions or concerns; we are here to serve you.
Thank you and May God bless our city and our citizens.