The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

January 27, 2013

Letters to the Editor 1/27/13

The News Courier

The News Courier encourages letters to the editor. Submissions should be no more than 400 words and should include a name, address and telephone number for verification. Submissions that do not meet requirements are subject to editing. Send letters by noon on Thursdays to P.O. Box 670, Athens, AL, 35613, or email to

A well-received

learning experience

Dear Editor:

Through my involvement, I continue to be impressed by the City Council, the city administration and by each city department’s excellent performance in providing the various services to all of us. 

What is also impressive is the teamwork and teaming between different city organizations in the administration and provision of services to its citizens.

Recently, I watched Mr. John Stockton, manager of the Water Department, on the local CBS channel speaking to the efforts and direction Athens is taking in relation to a project that will greatly improve our water services. For television, he highlighted a portion of the content (as suggested by Councilman Cannon) of a presentation he made to the City Council at a work session on Jan 11, 2013.

As a part of this project, what must also be understood is the excellence in the management actions that have taken place, across the board, which led up to the presentation, and a request for tentative approval from the council to proceed. 

In support of the effort, all the major department managers (Messrs. Rich, Stockton, Scroggins, et al) met and teamed to determine the most technically feasible and efficient implementation of the improvements. Detailed planning highlighted cross-departmental involvement and support. 

Also, very apparent was the great deal of work that had taken place to ensure the most cost effective use of available funding, and for the cost of money. As well as considering every available and feasible project cost reduction by senior department management, Councilman Wales did an excellent job of locating a very advantageous source of money, and with the support of the mayor’s office and Ms. Barnes, the director of finance, put together a budget which would fund the project and can be lived with on a financial basis.

I attend many work sessions and council meetings, and I am very pleased to see the high level of cooperation between departments in providing services, as well as how well all of the council members and the mayor continue to contribute by their questions, ideas, suggestions and comments.

Last but not least, participate in your city’s government, and please log on to the city of Athens’ website and complete the “A Vision for Athens Survey.”


Ralph Diggins