West Point City Council named its official city officers for the year, including a city attorney.
Jeff Todd, who also represents LaGrange and Hogansville, will continue to represent West Point in 2013. Todd was named interim city attorney last year after council’s regular lawyer, Larry Nix, was charged with two DUIs.
Council also named Wesley Leonard as municipal court judge, Kenneth S. Rearden as city recorder pro-tem, Julian Mack as prosecuting attorney, Todd as assistant prosecuting attorney and Mark Carlton as public defender.
Councilman Ben Wilcox was named mayor pro-tem.
In making the annual appointments, council also effectively eliminated appointment of three city officers: the city clerk, engineer and town doctor.
City Manager Ed Moon said last week it wasn’t necessary for the council to vote on those three particular jobs.
The city clerk is hired through the city’s normal hiring processes, Moon said, and although council votes on the appointment, renewing it every year is unnecessary.
The city engineer title is a false one, because the city uses several engineers, depending on the project and the cost – there is no one official engineer.
Appointing a town doctor is an antiquated holdover from the city’s charter.
“Employees use their own doctor (if injured on the job),” Moon said.
The city does need the use of a doctor to conduct employee physicals for the police and fire departments, along with drug screens, but Moon said the city would use whoever offered the best price for the service, not a doctor appointed annually.
Todd said the city won’t have to go through the normally arduous process of approaching the state legislature to change its charter to stop appointing the three positions. The council can have two readings of an ordinance and get it done without the state involvement.
Council also voted Monday on closing a section of Avenue D, the stretch of street between the two main buildings at the former West Point High School on U.S. 29.
The road already had been closed for renovations to the building, which is operated by West Point Parks and Recreation. Moon said keeping the street closed will allow the city to create about 40 more parking spots at the recreation complex as well as improve safety.