Silverhill accepts petition for property annexation


SILVERHILL, Alabama — The Silverhill Town Council adopted an ordinance at its April 19 meeting to accept a petition for annexation for property on Alabama 104 which will allow the town to further annex property the town purchased earlier this year.

The annexation includes two parcels of property known as the Kanne/Hedden Property totaling 37 acres and will allow the town to move forward with its petition to annex a 7.23-acre parcel of property the purchase of which was finalized in February.

In March of 2020, the council agreed to move forward with a contract to purchase 7.23 acres of property for $120,000.

Lyles said the town had submitted the agreement to the property owners, who had one issue with financing on the property. Council members agreed accept the changes and proceed forward with the purchase.

In December of 2019, council members discussed the possibility of using part of the property for a water tower. They also discussed using the property for fire department facilities, but it was unclear whether or not it could be used for that purpose.

At the Feb. 1, 2021 meeting, the council approved the resolution to close on the property, which was signed on Feb. 3, said Mayor Jared Lyles.

Under the terms of the agreement, the sale price would be paid through owner financing from the seller to the town over a 20-year term.

Attorney Josh Myrick who handles legal matters for the town said the town also needs to start the process of having the property zoned with the state. The process would include advertising for a public hearing before the town’s Planning Board.

In other business April 19, the council voted to retroactively end free building permits and debris pickup on April 19 incurred by residents from Hurricane Sally.

Lyles estimated that the town will submit debris removal estimated at $678,000 for reimbursement.

“FEMA representatives are in Baldwin County and we are in the process of setting up a meeting with a representative to help with any problems there might be in the reimbursement process,” Lyles said.

Under terms of the agreement between FEMA and the state, plans are to be reimbursed 75 percent of the cost for debris removal and any other damage claims caused by the September storm. The state will then reimburse municipalities 12.5 percent leaving 12.5 percent of the cost for municipalities to pay.

The town hopes to also apply for federal reimbursement for storm damage after announcing that claims made against the town’s insurance would not meet the town’s total deductible.

The council postponed voting on AMIC Insurance renewal at the April 19 meeting after learning that the town has deductibles in the amount of $100,000 per structure, a total of $300,000.

“At that rate we can never meet our deductible,” said Council member Tonie Norden. “That’s ridiculous. What are we paying for?”

The council also voted to table approval of a quote for roof repair on the city’s treatment building with an estimated cost of $9,950. Council member Gerald Ardoin asked for time to allow him to research the cost.

The council also approved a measure to contract with SERVPRO for mold remediation for the town’s library. Both projects are the result of damages caused by Hurricane Sally.

Also on April 19, the council:

  • Approved the rehiring of two employees to provide summer help for the town’s Utilities Department. Superintendent Scottie Smith also asked the council if he could increase the salaries for the temporary employees.
  • Approved the purchase of shirts for Utility Department employees to wear during training and special events which would display how long the employees have served with the town.
  • Approved a request to move the Community Center bank account from Centennial Bank to United Bank.
  • Approved the write-off of bad debt to the town.