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Luverne to contract with rescue squad

Mayor Joe Rex Sport made the Luverne City Council aware of a number of budget issues at Monday night’s meeting as the new fiscal year approaches.

One of those involves Luverne Rescue.

The city had previously been funding the rescue squad, but it was discovered that Luverne Rescue was incorporated.

“Since they were a private entity, the auditor said that wasn’t appropriate,” Sport said. “We contacted the attorney general for guidance, and they gave it to us. We could contract with them for services, but they’d have to maintain their payroll and repair services.”

“This came about when the auditors found out they were incorporated and just like any other business, not an arm of the city,” Sport added. “We don’t subsidize any other business in town.”

Sport said a number of issues will come into play during negotiations about a contract, including the rent on the building that houses the rescue squad.

Sport said they would work together to see that the issue is resolved before the first of October.

Later in the meeting, Sport also said that he would continue to revise the budget.

“My first rundown of anticipated revenues didn’t look too good, but we’ve got more work to do on that,” he said. “We may have some areas we’ll have to cut back on.”

In other business, city engineer Morris Tate said that the city usually has a surplus in revenue from the Alabama Municipal Electric Authority, but a dry summer has cut into that.

“There hasn’t been as much hydro-electric power and prices are going up,” Tate said.

Assistant fire chief W.A. Neal said that the city’s new firetruck would need to go to Birmingham for repair work, which is covered under warranty.

“It’s probably a mount broken on one of the pumps,” Neal said.

Sport also proposed putting a streetlight behind the gazebo at Douglas Park, saying that it has become a “hangout” and that some damages have occurred.

“We’re looking into getting that done,” he said.