Sept 20, 2018
To: The Citizens of The City of Geneva, Alabama
From: Mayor Frankie Lindsey
Subject: Overview of new projects and State of the City
As your Mayor, I want to address several projects that the City plans on implementing and some that have already been implemented and are ongoing. First of all, I do not have Facebook on my phone or computer therefore, what I learn from Facebook comes to me via family and friends. Apparently, there are some concerns that the City does not have any activities for the children, etc. I thank each of you for your comments and below, I will try and explain what the City is doing and has been doing.
1. When I became your Mayor, I purchased an outdoor theater system to be used at Fowler Park and other places in Geneva. We have shown four (4) movies, the quality of the movies that are shown are in high definition (HD). Each movie was advertised on Facebook and in the newspaper Very few people showed up to enjoy a "movie under the stars". These movies are not inexpensive" they cost approximately $500.00 per movie. I started this project with the hopes that we could pack the park with k.ds and their families but the excuses that were given to us were "i just plain forgot ,t or "we already had something planned". So, as I said, we showed four different movies and the crowd we expected just did not show up. We are not going to give up on this project, and will began showing other movies soon and hope you can attend
2 Last Summer the City sponsored two separate “kids day” events at Fowler Park and they were free for the entire family. Water slides were available and prizes were given to all children. This was advertised in the paper and on Facebook. Only the Pre-K students participated in these events and I appreciate them coming and enjoying the fun. The public did not support these events. It is evident that nearly all parents and many of their children are engaged on Facebook and had the opportunity to participate in their kid’s day out. We have recreation sports that has a full schedule for all seasons. Please get your kids involved in these in these activities and enjoy as a family event. There is no excuse for our children not being able to participate in these events.
3. For the past twenty-five (25) years, the City has sponsored a fourth (4) of July fireworks event. This
year was probably the best ever, according to the number of participants. The Chamber of Commerce
helps with this event and it is always a pleasure for our kids to come and enjoy this event.
4. At Easter, The Chamber of Commerce always sponsors the annual egg hunt for the kids. This has
always been at Fowler Park in Geneva.
For the past 43 years the River Festival Committee has held the Annual River Festival where there are many events that our kids can participate in, worm fiddling, greasy pole, tug a war, kid's rides, and fishing tournaments.
This year, 2018, the Geneva Historical Society will be hosting several events commemorating the Bi-Centennial. These events will include activities for kids, (parades, etc.) I encourage every one to participate. It will be so much fun!
This year marks the 10th year of Halloween at the Junction. This event was started by and is organized by the City Clerk's office. Each year numerous businesses, civic groups, churches and individuals come together to support this event that provides a safe and fun place for trick or treat and other activities.
The following are several projects that the City is involved in.
The City of Geneva has just completed a $650,000.00 drainage project which helped many households in our City with a terrible drainage problem. This project also helped with the drainage at our levee, therefore making our City much safer concerning excess water building up within the city streets.
The Qty will be building two regulation size soccer fields at our recreation department The existing parking lot will be renovated whereas the trees will be taken out with exception of a couple, and a paved parking area that will accommodate approximately 220 marked spaces for vehicles. The soccer fields and the existing ball fields will be surrounded by a walking nature trail to be used by the public. There will be new bleachers along with a new concession stand and new bathrooms. This project will cost approximately $650,000.00. The fields will be lit by state of art LED lights for our night games.
The sidewalk on the east side of Commerce Street will be getting a facelift beginning soon. We will begin taking bids for a new sidewalk that will begin at the intersection of the SB&T Bank going north to the courthouse. This sidewalk will match the west side of Commerce Street sidewalk. This project will cost approximately $650,000.00
The Qty of Geneva will begin a new sewer project which will start just across the Pea River bridge and go to the Devco area. This will serve approximately 65 residents with new sewage installation. There will be two streets paved during this project. This project will cost approximately $600,000.00.
There has been a lot of "Facebook" talk about the City tearing down the old "trestle". Yes we are going to remove the old trestle and build a new one in its place where two vehicles can enter at a time. This new trestle will look like the old one except it will be safe to travel under and you will not have to worry about it falling in on you. The City will be applying for a grant to install new playground equipment next to the trestle where our kids can come and play and enjoy with their family. Phase II of the grant will have a splash pad installed for the hot summer months. Also, concerning Fowler Park (Junction) we will be looking into getting new play ground equipment for the kids and their families.
The City of Geneva will be exploring a "Battle of the Bands" contest during the 2019 year. We are in talks with Mr. Royce Reagan of Marianna, FL, who will be helping us with the arrangements. We want to make this an annual event.
I promised you, the citizens of Geneva, that we would be cleaning up our town concerning old dilapidated houses. This has begun and subsequently, we have recently identified four houses and have started burning or tearing down these "eye sores". The process takes several months of investigation and court procedures before anything can be done. We will continue with our abatement process and we will make sure that the job gets done.
The City has partnered with the Athenaeum Club of Geneva and we have started a project to upgrade our City Cemetery. A new drainage system will be installed; the old rusty chain link fence will be torn down and a new stylish aluminum fence will be installed. A water system will be installed for the convenience of watering the flowers and other needs. I appreciate the Athenaeum Club for wanting to do this project with the City. This project is going to be costly and the Athenaeum Club has agreed to help with the cost.
In response to the complaints against the City concerning our kids, etc., I want our citizens to know that I have a vision for our City and its citizens and most of all, our children. My vision is to help individuals of all ages and abilities achieve a better sense of self and improved quality of life through physical, social, educational and creative activities that promote self-esteem, confidence, and fun in a pleasant and safe environment. I encourage all of us to come together and make this vision come true.
Public Safety: Geneva is a safer City under this administration. The Mayor and the Chief of Police along with the City Council has placed an unprecedented priority on public safety and community policing, and the brave men and women in our department are second to none. They have accepted the challenge and have risen to the occasion. We have reduced our overall crime numbers and have cut the felony rate substantially. Each month, our Fire Department and Rescue Squad bravely respond to not only fire related calls, but numerous lifesaving medical emergencies. All of our first responders under the leadership of Chief Clemmons, Chief Latimer and Rescue Director Cindy Campbell have remained active and engaged in this community; supporting initiatives that foster open dialogue, collaboration and good will. They are committed to giving back to our community. As a City, we are strong but continue to work daily to build an even stronger community through planning and dedicated, trained employees, committed to spending wisely, while striving to meet the many needs of our citizens with amenities and services desired by all. I ask that we continue to lift each of our first responders and their families up in prayer as they work each and every day to protect our City and our loved ones. We have seen a drastic drop in unemployment in our city. It Is no coincidence our crime numbers track this trend.
The City has just adopted a new budget for the year 2018-2019. We have been diligent in building a sound portfolio; One, prime to attract reinvestment and future growth. We have remained committed in paying our debts on time without unnecessary delay or debate. Geneva has a great bond rating from Standard and Poor's Financial Services, LLC With this, it signals to investors that doing business in Geneva is a sound decision.
May, 2018 the City of Geneva was awarded the designation of "Alabama Community of Excellence" (ACE Program). I was proud to accept this award during the May 19th, 2018 opening session of the Alabama League of Municipalities annual convention, held in Montgomery. Governor Kay Ivey presented the award. A.C.E. is a 501 (c) (3) organization that provides technical assistance to select communities ranging from 2,000 to 18,000 population. The graduation of Geneva brings the total of Alabama communities that have achieved designation as A.C.E. to thirty- six (36). The A.C.E. program offers the City partnership ranging from state agencies and associations and others, to foster unique community development programs to assist smaller towns to plan, grow and prosper.
The City has agreed to partner with the County Road and Bridge Department to re-pave county road 33 (located at the intersection of 27 south and Stinson's store) this road will be paved all the way to the Florida line.
In closing, please know that across all departments of the city, we have resiliency weathered storms, and are looking forward to a renaissance that is very much within reach.