Chelsea forms new Park & Rec Board made up of volunteers

CHELSEA – The Chelsea City Council at its meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 7, approved the inaugural members of the city’s volunteer Park & Rec Board.

Chelsea Mayor Tony Picklesimer said the board members would serve as “eyes and ears” for the department, and give residents a voice to make recommendations.

The inaugural members are: Bart Pettus, David Ingram, Casey Morris, David Burton, Melissa Townsend, Jason Rudakas, Joseph Palladino, Rachel Trice, Todd Walker, Jonathan Gill and John Chamblee.

“Let me be the first to congratulate and thank these people, including our own Casey Morris, for being the first to serve on the Park & Rec Board,” Picklesimer said. “It is very important to all of us that we get the input from our citizens to help us have a better organization. That’s what this is all about.”

The Council also approved a resolution to consent to improvements to the intersection of Shelby County 47 and Shelby County 39 near Chelsea City Hall.

Councilman Chris Grace said the resolution authorizes the transfer of property that the city is donating to the project that will realign the roads to improve safety and traffic flow.

“We’re excited to see this next step,” Grace said. “Hopefully, we’ll be moving dirt before too long.”

In other business, the Council:

  • Approved a resolution to provide comprehensive cancer coverage for the city’s firefighters, who suffer from the disease at a higher rate than others, Picklesimer said.
  • Heard an update from Councilwoman Tiffany Bittner on Eli Hairston, a teenager who suffered a traumatic head injury during a golf cart accident. Bittner said Hairston is doing “exceptionally well.” Though still at Children’s of Alabama, Hairston has had all tubes removed and is undergoing therapy to regain the ability to stand and walk. Picklesimer said many residents have sent cards to City Hall in support of Hairston.