Harpersville mayor talks town’s past and future

Published 1:17 pm Thursday, February 11, 2016

Harpersville crop

By MOLLY DAVIDSON / Staff Writer

HARPERSVILLE—While Harpersville is a historic town, there are a lot of new things going on. Harpersville Mayor Theoangelo Perkins noted some highlights and projects coming up in the 200-year-old town’s future during a Feb. 11 South Shelby Chamber of Commerce Coffee with the Mayor breakfast.

Harpersville’s economy is strong, with new businesses coming in to the town and existing businesses expanding, Perkins said.

“We’re proud of our businesses, our businesses are doing really well,” Perkins said. “Every business counts…every business makes a difference.”

Harpersville is home to a variety of different businesses, from restaurants such as Bigman’s, to shops such as Black Sheep Antiques, to farms. Each one draws people into the town, Perkins said, noting the farms bring in large groups throughout the year.

“(Morgan Creek, Stone Hollow Farm and Old Baker Farm) are unique, farm-type businesses that are bringing school children out every day,” Perkins said.

The town’s 200th birthday celebration, Bicentennial Harpersville Day, drew thousands of visitors, a large increase from last year’s event, Perkins said, and featured the town’s first ever parade.

The town’s financial position has also seen marked improvement over the past few years, Perkins said.

“Three or four years ago Harpersville was struggling,” Perkins said. “We had to make some deep cuts and make some decisions.”

Harpersville finished the past fiscal year with a $500,000 budget surplus, Perkins said.

Perkins noted several things coming up in Harpersville’s future, including a fresh coat of paint on the town’s water tower and the reopening of the municipal court.

Harpersville’s municipal court was abolished in 2012 amid a lawsuit and allegations of civil rights violations. In October 2015, the town council voted to have it reestablished, at the recommendation of the town’s new police chief.

“We’re about to reopen the court, and we’re excited about that,” Perkins said. “We’re excited about doing things in a wonderful manner.”