Alabaster again delays hearing on sidewalk ordinance

The Alabaster City Council delayed a public hearing on a proposed ordinance to combat damaged sidewalks in the city until July 1. (Contributed)

The Alabaster City Council delayed a public hearing on a proposed ordinance to combat damaged sidewalks in the city until July 1. (Contributed)

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

Alabaster leaders cited outstanding questions on the city’s proposed sidewalk ordinance in a decision to delay a public hearing on the matter until next month.

The City Council originally was scheduled to hold the public hearing during its June 3 meeting, but instead agreed to delay the hearing until July 1.

“The City Council still had a lot of questions about it. There just wasn’t enough info for us to move on it last night,” Council President Scott Brakefield said on June 4. “We decided we will talk about it during our June 11 work session and have the hearing on July 1.”

The June 11 work session will begin at 6:30 p.m. at the Alabaster Senior Center, and the July 1 meeting will begin at 7 p.m. at the Alabaster Municipal Annex.

The decision marked the second time the council has delayed the public hearing on the proposed sidewalk ordinance over the past two months.

Alabaster leaders began discussing the possible sidewalk ordinance during a late April work session.

Alabaster City Attorney Jeff Brumlow previously said state law places responsibility for sidewalk maintenance on the owner of the property the sidewalk is on. However, the city must first pass an ordinance laying out the process for holding the property owner accountable before taking action against the property owner, according to Brumlow.

If the ordinance passes, it will allow the city to notify a property owner of a damaged sidewalk on their property and require them to fix it. The homeowner will have the option of either hiring a contractor to fix the damaged sidewalk or allowing the city to repair it.

If the city fixes the sidewalk, it could then place a lien against the property for the amount of the repairs, Brumlow said.

“We had a few people show up for the hearing last night, but we told them it had been postponed before the meeting started,” Brakefield said. “We are going to look at the municipalities around us and see how they handle their sidewalks.”