The Enterprise City Council is looking for ways to better enforce city codes following concerns expressed by residents.
Council member Sonya Rich explained in Tuesday’s meeting that the city began looking into code enforcement after she had concerns about areas not only in her district, but around the city, that are overgrown and not up to city code. Rich said she and Councilman Eugene Goolsby met with Barry Mott, city engineer and public works director, and several other city employees to discuss the problem.
“They’re really actively looking at our code,” Rich said. “And this is not just for our homeowners. This is for our businesses and for all aspects of our city to get cleaned up and make it look better and have that type of consistency.”
Mott, along with other city employees, gave the council an update on their work on looking into improving the city’s code enforcement. Mott said they are taking a more aggressive approach to properties that are not up to compliance and have sent letters out to repeat offenders.
“The number one focus of our department, the engineering department, is public safety and to make sure we’re upholding the ordinances that the city has adopted, and I just want you to know we’re taking that very seriously,” Mott said.
Police Chief Michael Moore said the plan for now is enforcing the laws and ordinances that the city already has and can enforce immediately. He said the process to remove abandoned vehicles from areas around the city began last week, beginning with the worst areas.
Another issue the city is looking into is the possibility of an ordinance to allow beekeeping inside the city limits.
Staci Hayes, assistant director of engineering services, said that in her research she found four cities in Alabama that allow beekeeping in their city limits. Hayes said that she believes more research needs to be done on the topic and that a quick decision shouldn’t be made on the issue. Some concerns she brought up were the dangers for individuals with bee allergies and homeowners moving but leaving bee hives on the property.
Richard Woodham, a local beekeeper, agreed that these issues need to be taken into consideration for any beekeeping ordinance.
“I do think there should be a registration of the hives,” Woodham said. “I think that it’s appropriate to maybe even require a person to put a sign out in their front yard that’s easily seen.”
Woodham suggested bee-keeping properties should be at least a quarter of an acre, and there should also be 200 feet between it and other properties.
Woodham also took time to say that honeybees generally do not bother people unless they are disturbed. He said that they do sometimes swarm on trees or other objects, but state inspectors can be called to remove them and return them to their hive.
The issue was first brought to the attention of the council by Woodham at a June council meeting. The council agreed at that meeting that it would look further into allowing beekeeping in the city limits.
In other business, the Enterprise City Council:
Approved Ordinance 07-06-21-B providing for the prohibition of parking on certain streets before, during, and after certain downtown events where the city council has previously approved a road closure.
Approved a request from Heer Management LLC on behalf of Legacy Foodmart 6 for a Retail Beer (off premises only) license and Retail Wine (off premises only) license.
Approved a request from Ruby Tuesday Operations LLC on behalf of Ruby Tuesday 3743 for a Restaurant Retail Liquor (on premises only) license.
Authorized the mayor to execute a cooperative service agreement on behalf of the City of Enterprise with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for nuisance wildlife control services. The agreement beginning May 15, 2021 and ending Sept. 30, 2026, is a 50/50 cost share with the city’s portion not to exceed $10,000.00.
Approved an ordinance providing for the granting of a nonexclusive cable television franchise to Troy Cablevision, Inc. to construct, operate and maintain a cable television system in the City of Enterprise. The franchise agreement is for a term of ten years with a franchise fee of 5% of the annual gross revenues.
The council’s next work session will be held Aug. 3 at 5 p.m., with a meeting following at 6 p.m.