The New Castle Rural Volunteer Fire Department's Auxiliary is holding its annual Chili Day fundraiser on Friday, and the food preparation was beginning this morning. According to Richard Powell, pictured on the left, 213 pounds of ground beef will be used to provide enough chili for the all-you-can-eat event that will be held at the First Baptist Church on North Rosser Street from 10:30 a.m. until 7 p.m. Tickets are $6 today and $7 at the door. Continuing from left are Wilma Powell and Dottie Hatcher. Photo by Alan Smith.
MANAGER’S LIST CUT DURING CALLED MEETING
The three remaining members of the Forrest City Water Utility Commission held a called meeting on Wednesday night to narrow down the list of nine candidates who had applied to be the next manager of the utility.
Commission members reduced the list to three names and it was announced this morning that the remaining candidates will be interviewed tonight during another called meeting at 5 p.m. at the Forrest City Civic Center.
Chairman Jimmy King and commissioners Michael Jeffers and Gloria Anthony attended the meeting, which was the first since Will Harris tendered his resignation earlier this month.
Late last year former commissioner Glenn Shepherd resigned, leaving King, Jeffers and Anthony the only members of the five-person body.
King said the purpose of Wednesday’s meeting was to close the application process and discuss the potential applicants.
At the February regular meeting it was announced that Brian E. Meaton of St. Petersburg, Fla., Clifton Blanchett of Forrest City, Cedric Ali Bey of Wynne, Gary Guillory of Bella Vista, Gary Bryant of Forrest City, Dawn Wilson of West Memphis, W.H. Calvin Murdock of Marianna and Edward H. Gregory Jr., the current interim manager, of Forrest City had applied. It was also revealed at the meeting that Jeremy Burgess of Bryant had sent in an application since the regular meeting.
King closed the meeting to discuss the applicants in executive session and after a brief session, commissioners reconvened.
“We voted and culled it down to three applicants,” King said once back in open session.
King was advised that the commission could not vote on any matters in executive session and said “That’s what we’re about to do now,” responded King. “That’s why we’re going it over now. We didn’t vote.”
King continued to discuss what the commission would do.
“We’ve got three candidates that we’re going to interview, who are Edward Gregory, Calvin Murdock and Cedric Ali Bey,” King stated. “We’ll be interviewing them in the next few days.”
Jeffers then moved to adjourn the meeting, however Anthony pointed out that the commission had not voted to reduce the candidates to Gregory, Murdock and Ali Bey.
King recommended the three men be interviewed. Jeffers made the motion, which was seconded by Anthony. The measure passed unanimously, which included a vote from King. The commission is a five-person body even with the two vacancies, which means three votes are needed to pass or reject any measure.
This morning, Gregory contacted the Times-Herald and said the commission would hold a called meeting this evening to interview the remaining candidates. While the meeting is open to the public, the interviews will be conducted in executive session according to King.