Stonecrest Mayor Jason Lary kicked-off the city’s first ever council meeting by promising that big things are going to happen in the brand-new city.
However, that promise will take some time to make good on as the city’s leaders work to piece together the essential building blocks first. The majority of the inaugural city council meeting was spent addressing a number of housekeeping items and formalities, including discussion of a city hall space and officially adopting the city’s charter.
“This is a joint effort between myself, council members and the citizens,” Lary said. “This is built for you, the citizens, and [...] as we grow together, it is up to all of us collectively to make this place what we want it to be.”
Lary and the five city council members met publicly at the Stonecrest Library March 8, and many of the auditorium’s seats were filled for the 9 a.m. Monday morning meeting.
Lary said the council will continue to meet on Monday mornings for at least the next three months as they work out a long-term schedule as well as a location for a more permanent city hall.
The topic of a city hall was discussed in a report presented by Joel Thibodeaux, chair of the Governor’s Commission for the city. Out of three potential locations, Thibodeaux said the recommended choice was the Stonecrest Center, 3120 Stonecrest Blvd, due to the lowest quoted price per square-foot and an already built out space the city could easily move into.
Councilmember Diane Adoma was voted in as Mayor Pro Tempore, with all but Councilmember Jazzmin Cobble and Rob Turner voting in favor of her appointment. Cobble voted for herself with Turner giving her his vote as well.
The meeting also saw several individuals appointed to interim positions to serve while candidates are vetted by the mayor and council to fill positions on a more permanent basis.
Closing out, council members expressed gratitude for citizens showing up to take part in the historical occasion, but also urged them to stay involved.
“Our first meeting is our very first step to make this a world class city, but there is nothing we can do in and of ourselves without your help,” said District One Councilmember Jimmy Clanton. “I implore you to keep participating and showing up and giving us feedback as to the direction we should take. And spread the news about what is going on here.”
Lary said the first week in office, which officially began May 1, was a busy one spent preparing for the first council meeting.
“This past week was full of preparation and understanding of how we go about our business and put things on the agenda,” Lary said. “It has been drinking through a fire hose, but it is a good and exciting time.”