Jacksons Gap looks into potential new park

Jeff Walker, second from right, oversaw his last council meeting. Walker has either been on the Jacksons Gap Town Council or Jacksons Gap mayor for the last 20 years.

For 20 years Jeff Walker has served the town of Jacksons Gap either as mayor or councilmember..

Walker called to order his last meeting Tuesday night — waiting to the called hour of 6:30 p.m.

“I need to hold off a couple minutes,” Walker said at 6:28 p.m. “Someone else might be coming. I don’t want to get any demerits.”

Walker didn’t seek reelection as mayor of Jacksons Gap but did run for a place on the town council in the Aug. 25 municipal election. Walker was not selected by voters to continue serving the town but he said the idea of free time is also appealing.

“I can breathe a little,” Walker said. “I will have some free time now. It’s the first time in 20 years.”

While Walker will not be mayor or on the council, it doesn’t mean a Walker name will still not be present when town business is discussed in Jacksons Gap. Walker’s wife Dianna Walker was elected to the council in Tuesday’s municipal runoff election. She replaces incumbent Troy Cruz.

The mayor did get to conduct some business.

“We got three applications for chief of police,” Walker said to the council. “Do you want to take that up now or wait?”

The police department currently has one officer and three vehicles. One vehicle has just come back from the dealer after an oil pump was replaced, but the check engine light was still on. The other vehicles have been repaired and appear to be operable according to Walker and the town’s one officer. While the officer is off, the Tallapoosa County Sheriff’s Department has been covering calls for the town.

The position of police chief is an appointment made by the town council every four years when the council begins a new term in November. The council took no action on the matter Tuesday and likely will wait for Dianna Walker to be on the council with Frank Lucas as mayor.

Councilmember Jeannette Tuck asked about hiring an employee to elevate staffing issues.

“We need to try to get a magistrate in to try and get some relief for (town clerk) Kathleen (Thomas),” Tuck said.

The position has been advertised since July. Walker suggested posting the job again but Tuck said she could call those who have applied to see if they are still interested and available to try and speed the process.

The Jacksons Gap Volunteer Fire Department said it will be holding a trick-or-treat from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31 at the fire department.

“We will have it like a drive-thru,” Cruz said. “We will have candy bagged up and hand it off.”

The council also approved the minutes from the last meeting and payment of bills.

The next meeting of the Jacksons Gap Town Council is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 10.

Cliff Williams is a staff writer for Tallapoosa Publishers.