Candidates for Scottsboro City Council in the upcoming municipal election had a chance to make their case to voters Tuesday night.
Candidates were given two minutes for an opening statement. They were asked five questions, and they were given one minute to respond.
City Council Place 1 incumbent Greg Mashburn was appointed to the city council in 2018. He is currently president pro tem and was appointed the chair of a few committees within the council.
Mashburn discussed his accomplishments since joining the council during his closing statement.
“When I came onto the council, I wanted to be a voice for the people of Scottsboro. I wanted to be the person that addressed and solved issues. I want to continue to be that person,” said Mashburn.
Mashburn’s opponent is former Scottsboro Police Chief Ralph Dawe. Dawe said he offers experience, knowledge and commitment to move the city forward. Dawe said he solved problems every day as a police administrator. Dawe said he knows where the problems are in the city, and he will try to find solutions for those problems.
City Council Place 2 incumbent Patrick Stewart said he is proud of his work on new storm shelters and additional funding for new school resource officers. He said his experience in management has helped him with budget process within the city government.
He discussed the investments made in city departments such as the police, fire, street and sanitation departments during his tenure on the council. Stewart currently serves as City Council President.
Stewart’s opponents are Nita Tolliver and Dale Langella. Tolliver works for the Scottsboro City School System. She serves on the Downtown Redevelopment Authority and she serves on other leadership committees within the school system. She describes herself as a leader and a team player.
Tolliver said her main priorities would be to serve the citizens of Scottsboro with honesty and respect. She said she will work as hard as she can for as long as she can for the people of the city.
In her opening statement, Langella said there are things that need to be changed in Scottsboro. She said the city needs new jobs. She believes the city needs things for youth to thrive.
Langella said Scottsboro should be preserving the city for its youth. With her education in business and leadership skills, she believes she has what it takes to move the city forward.
One of the main topics of discussion throughout the forum was the condition of city streets. City Council candidates were asked how funds should be appropriated and how they would prioritize which streets would be repaired.
Mashburn said there were many factors that come in to deciding what roads get repaired. He is on the committee to help decide what roads needed to be paved. He said they worked with the city engineer and the street department to come up with a list of roads that needed attention. He said the council had appropriated as much as it can to repair roads.
Dawe said he has been putting a great deal of thought into the condition of roads in Scottsboro. He wants to set up a consistent program for funding and a committee with people who travel the roads most, such as the police and fire chiefs and other department heads along with the city engineer, mayor and council person.
Dawe said the committee would determine priority of road repair. He believes the city could fix more roads if they started that practice.
Stewart said his thought process when he formed the current committee was to get ahead of paving and to have continuous paving every year. Stewart said the council has allocated funds to pave roads every year, but if those funds are not spent, the council will not allocate more money the next year. He said the council only allocates what is spent.
Toliver said road condition is one of the main priorities she sees within the city.
“The roads have issues,” said Tolliver. “I feel like if funds were set aside and a little was budgeted every year, we can keep up all of our roads.”
Tolliver said Scottsboro will not attract new business or entertainment without good road conditions.
Langella said that roads are not the main issue in the city. She said that roads and funds are an issue, but the city needs jobs. She said jobs bring in revenue and revenue helps repair roads.
Candidates were also asked about the parks and recreation department and facilities, the process of appointing residents to city boards and what they would want to do with the city property on Goose Pond Island.
They were also asked about their feeling toward incentivizing new businesses to come to Scottsboro. All candidates said they would be in favor of giving incentives to potential new businesses.