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One of the last items on last Tuesday’s agenda for the Taylorsville City Commission was a familiar one — a resolution to support Taylorsville being reclassified as a fourth-class city.
“Hallelujah,” Mayor Don Pay said when he came to the topic on the agenda. “I’m glad to see this. I’m glad Commissioner [Nathan] Nation wanted to put this on the agenda.”
In the past, Pay has asked to put the resolution on the agenda, but as recently as this past January, efforts to pass the resolution have failed with only Pay and Nation in support.
During a Jan. 3 meeting, Pay and Nation voted in favor of the resolution, but commissioners Beverly Ingram, Kathy Spears and Larry Waldridge voted against it.
As pay referenced, during last Tuesday’s meeting, Nation had asked City Clerk Steve Biven to include the matter on the agenda.
But, as excited as he seemed to discuss it, Pay made a motion to table the resolution Tuesday night.
Pay said, based on his understanding, that a resolution passed by the current commissioners (whose seats are all up for election in November) “would be declared null and void” by the state’s General Assembly in January.
“It would have to be developed by a current commission,” Pay said.
Pay said it would be more beneficial for the new commission — the one that will take office at the first of the year — to vote on the resolution.
“That’s not the way I understood it,” Nation said.
Pay said that based on information he had collected, a resolution supporting a reclassification of the city to fourth class would need to come from a current commission, and since the General Assembly doesn’t meet until January, the current commission would be the newly-elected commission in January.
“Are we going to play politics?” Nation asked. “You can put your name by it.”
“I don’t mean it that way,” Pay responded.
Commissioner Spears seconded Pay’s motion to table the resolution, and that motion passed 4-1 with Nation voting against it.
Taylorsville is currently a fifth-class city. Because city classifications are traditionally based on population, typically, fifth-class cities are those with populations of 1,000 to 2,999 and fourth-class cities are those with populations between 3,000 and 7,999.
According to the 2000 census, Taylorsville’s population was just above 1,000. The 2010 census showed Taylorsville’s population at 763, but the city challenges that number because the map used to calculate it was not up-to-date with city annexations, etc.
The major difference between fifth- and fourth-class cities is that fourth-class cities can adopt ordinances to regulate and tax alcohol sales within the city limits.
Fifth-class cities can do neither of those things. Also, because the largest city in Spencer County is a fifth-class city, no restaurant in the county can offer liquor by-the-drink.