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Phil Campbell City Council considers Christmas tree

With October in full swing and Halloween and Thanksgiving just around the corner, the Phil Campbell City Council is looking to get ready for the upcoming festive season by purchasing a Christmas tree for the Memorial Park.

Councilmembers discussed the issue during their regular meeting Oct. 18.

FLAGPOLE CHRISTMAS TREE

“One option that looks pretty good is a flagpole Christmas tree,” reported Phil Campbell City Councilman Eddie Marbutt. He noted the prices range from $818-$892, and that might not include shipping costs.

He said this represents the cheapest option.

“Basically, you just hook it to the bottom of your flagpole, raise it up, plug it in and it’s done,” explained Marbutt. He said while he’s never seen one in person, he thinks it would work – noting if it doesn’t, one option might be to rig up a different pole to use.

“From the way it looks, the spread on the bottom would be wide enough that it would clear the monuments, but I’m not 100 percent sure,” he added. He also noted it would be important to have a good place to store the tree to prevent any damage in the offseason.

FREESTANDING CHRISTMAS TREE

“The only other option I found was if you go with a freestanding tree, and you’re looking at $4-5K for the cheapest. They’re just crazy expensive,” Marbutt said.

Phil Campbell City Councilman Rodney Kuykendall advised confirming the lead time to make sure the tree would arrive before Christmas.

Phil Campbell Mayor Michael McQuary entertained the motion to proceed with the purchase of the flagpole tree if the dimensions will work. The council, with the exception of Councilman Phillip King, approved the purchase, at a cost of “approximately $900.”

LIGHTS

The council noted they are also working to determine how many working poles and lights the city has, and they might consider gradually purchasing more lights after that assessment has been made.

PHIL CAMPBELL INDUSTRIAL BOARD

In other business, the council made three appointments to the Phil Campbell Industrial Board — Wayne Welborn, Jack Caddell and Greg Williams.

McQuary explained the action was necessary, as the board hasn’t met in several years, in order to officially dissolve the board.

“There’s 12 acres of land that belongs to the Phil Campbell Industrial Board,” he noted, “and we had to appoint three members to the board so it can be dissolved and the land can be turned back over to the town so we can sell it if we need to.”

CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

The council discussed the pros and cons and ultimately voted to approve paying $1,500 in annual dues, paid monthly, to remain a member of the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce. King and McQuary abstained.

Concerns the council expressed included the mayor sharing he had been informed the Chamber would not be helping facilitate the annual Easter egg hunt in Phil Campbell Memorial Park this coming year but is instead looking at a possible county-wide Easter bunny event or other type of Easter party.

The council remarked the City of Phil Campbell will still hold its annual Easter egg hunt, with or without the Chamber’s participation, in order to continue a muchloved local tradition for children in the community.

CORONER’S OFFICE CONTRACT

The council also voted in favor of renewal of the contract with the Franklin County Coroner’s Office. McQuary noted the cost has gone up by about $100 for each transportation.

He explained this is in the event of a homicide where an autopsy is needed, and the city would have to pay the forensics lab for the procedure.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Oct. 29 — Movies in the Park, Phil Campbell Memorial Park: Two family-friendly Halloween movies will be shown. Popcorn will be available. There is no cost to attend. Those wishing to set up for trunk or treat may do so.

Nov. 5 – Phil Campbell Arts and Historical Society’s Second Annual Christmas Bazaar: The bazaar will be held in the Phil Campbell Community Center to raise funds toward the purchase of a building for the society’s use.

Dec. 8 – The Phil Campbell Christmas Parade will begin at 6 p.m.

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