New Albany fire chief submits resignation

Jeff Hale has resigned effective Monday, Feb. 21, as fire chief of the city of New Albany.

Mayor Tim Kent said Hale left a letter on his desk Wednesday, Feb. 16, saying he was going to retire. The mayor said he had not talked to Hale about his decision.
With more than 25 years of experience as a firefighter, Hale can retire under the state retirement system, Kent said. He has worked in New Albany since July 2008. Before that he worked 23 years with the Southaven Fire Department.
Kent said Hale’s family moved to New Albany for a while, but moved back to Southaven where they owned a house last August.
The mayor said the city requires the fire chief to live in the city, and the Board of Aldermen was not happy with Hale commuting to Southaven.
At one time the city discovered that Hale was driving a city pickup back and forth to Southaven and he was asked to leave the truck in the city and drive his personal car, the mayor said.
Ken said the department does not have a deputy chief and he expects to supervise he shift captains until the board can discuss a process for replacing the chief.