Amory aldermen explain rescinding of chief position vote

AMORY – The mood was tense at Tuesday evening’s board of aldermen meeting as concerned citizens filled the board room waiting to voice opinions regarding the board’s decision to rescind Ordinance No. 1677 requiring that the office of police chief be appointed.
“Men are fighting for our freedom and one of those freedoms is the right to vote. You took our rights away when you appointed the city clerk. We are a unique town and we want our rights as citizens. I want to know why this happened and I think you owe us an apology,” said Amory citizen Rex Coker, who was met with applause from the crowd.
City attorney John Creekmore stated that during a special-called meeting on Monday, Dec. 17, the board met with Chief Ronnie Bowen and Bowen’s attorney. After an agreement was reached in an executive session, the board voted 4-1 to keep the position an elected, rather than an appointed one.
While the overwhelming majority showed their support of the ordinance being rescinded, some citizens did raise questions regarding Bowen’s performance.
“I’m disappointed that this board brought something forward and then rescinded it. Bowen has not been a team player and I’ve seen it. He won’t come to meetings. He won’t cooperate with the rest of the community. I feel more comfortable calling the sheriff’s department than him,” said Martha Dalrymple.
As to the decision to rescind, alderman Tony Poss stated that he had not thought it through earlier when he voted to make the position appointed.
“I’ve had family issues and wasn’t thinking clearly. We are all voters and my dad always taught me to listen to the people.”
For alderman John Darden, it was merely an issue of communication.
“After Ronnie and his attorney presented their information, I changed my mind. He made a commitment and I agree with it.”
During Monday’s special-called meeting, Alderman Bill Lyle was selected to serve as police commissioner and act as a liaison between the police department and the board of aldermen.

For more information, check out the Dec. 26 edition of the Monroe Journal

  • Laura

    With the overwhelming turnout in favor of Chief Bowen…I can “”SAFELY” say that the majority of voters in Amory are very pleased with Chief Bowen’s leadership!! It was stated by Alderman-at-large that they wanted more control of the budget…WITH over $100,000 turned back over to the City at the end of the fiscal year. Why would they need MORE control? Sounds like the Chief did a great job controlling his departments budget. The Alderrman also stated that he had not attended the majority of the board meetings.. my understanding if you are on the agenda you are to attend.
    I am so glad that the voters of Amory are able to see thur all the bull that “our” leaders in Amory were dishing out!! Thank you to the Alderman that were able to see thur all the bull that they were being blindsided by!

  • Lynette

    I agree, Laura. Some of the bull came out of this Monroe County Journal which stated that only two towns in Mississippi still elect their police chiefs — Aberdeen, and Amory. That was a totally false statement, because MANY towns in Mississippi still elect their police chief, and my town of Aberdeen WILL continue to do so despite the efforts of our city officials to take away our right to vote over here. Thank you, Amory, for leading the way in fighting back. Your efforts also help us.

  • Amy

    Just what I want to listen to– the opinion of someone who spelled “through” thur,not once but twice. Almost as good as the follower who spelled mayor-M-A-Y-E-R!! The only bull that people need to see “through” is the fact that our tax dollars are being abused and misused. The three men that changed their vote have made themselves look absolutely foolish. I hope they all remember the day they put their hand on the Bible and made a promise to the citizens of Amory. For that they are going to have to answer to a higher power than any citizen in Amory!! Shame on the three of you gutless men for changing your vote even after seeing the evidence!!

  • Lynette

    I didn’t use the word mayor at all, what are you talking about? I followed the first poster. For that matter, this wasn’t an English term paper, it is a comments section. Looks like your three aldermen did their homework finally on how a democracy works.