- Cullman, Alabama

Top News

December 13, 2012

Proposal sets stage for restoring NARCOG

Chairmen for Morgan, Cullman counties say vote could occur in January

A compromise has been reached by representatives of three area governments that could restore the original members to the North-central Alabama Council of Local Governments.

In a meeting in Montgomery last week, Cullman County Commission Chairman Kenneth Walker, Morgan County Commission Chairman Ray Long and Lawrence County Commissioner Bobby Burch discussed the compromise in the presence of a mediator through the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA).

The proposal would make NARCOG’s voting powers similar to those of several years ago when population decided the number of votes each county is entitled to on the board. In this case, Morgan County — with the largest population — would have a slight majority of votes, followed by Cullman County and Lawrence County.

“That’s what we would like to see, that it be based on population. Morgan County has 51 percent of the population and this compromise would restore that. At that point we would be willing to rejoin, and that could open the way for Decatur to become a part again,” Long said.

The bylaws were changed years ago, which allowed Cullman County to carry the majority of votes. Long said this opened the way for one county to control who serves as director.

“Politics shouldn’t be an issue where the director is concerned, but it became an issue,” Long said. “What I would like to see, if we can get this plan approved, is that the next director be approved on a recommendation from an outside firm. The qualifications of a director should be the issue, not where that person lives.”

Walker, speaking at the Cullman Rotary Club Thursday, confirmed the compromise proposal and said it would be presented to the full NARCOG board. That meeting is likely to occur in January 2013.

“What we want is to get NARCOG back to its mission of helping seniors across the area,” Walker said.

Stanley Yarbrough, a Cullman County commissioner, recently began serving as chairman of the NARCOG board. He said he favors the compromise that was offered in Montgomery and believes it will best serve area residents.

“I think it’s great that the commission chairmen sat down and discussed this. I’m going to do everything in my power to get NARCOG back on track. Every town and entity would still be represented whether they have a vote or not on the board,”  Yarbrough said. “I think everybody realizes the benefit of staying together instead of moving off to other councils.”

Walker said if a compromise is not reached, Cullman County would likely be forced to join the council of governments serving Jefferson County, while Lawrence County would end up with the organization serving northwest Alabama and Morgan County falling under the Huntsville area.

Long said approval of the compromise would be up to the NARCOG board’s current voting members, which includes only Lawrence and Cullman counties.

“Our voting powers in Morgan County stopped at the end of June because we pulled out. But we’ll be back at the table if this is approved,” Long said. “We’ve asked the governor to hold up on approving us to join another organization so that we could try this. If Morgan County remains in NARCOG, we’re not going to run over anyone just because of the voting structure. We all have a mission to deliver services for our seniors and that’s what we want to effectively maintain.”

NARCOG’s next regular meeting is scheduled January 23.

David Palmer may be contacted at or 256-734-2131, ext. 213.


Text Only
Top News
  • Good Hope band School grappling with massive Good Hope band growth

    With the band more than doubling in size over the past four years, Good Hope High School is dealing with what principal Anita Kilpatrick calls “a great problem to have.” But, it’s still a problem.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • WEB MUGS 2 Cullman men arrested in Garden City cemetery on drug charges

    Two Cullman men were arrested in a Garden City cemetery after 28 plastic baggies allegedly filled with marijuana, methampheatmine, and crystal ice were found in their vehicle.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Beatles Rehearsal WSCC singers to pay tribute to the Beatles

    It’s been 50 years since the Beatles made the leap from across the pond to shake up the music scene in America. Their influence is still being felt today and will on display as the Wallace State Singers present “Revolution: A Musical Celebration of the Beatles.”

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • FHS 2 Academics improve after anti-bullying program implemented at Fairview High School

    Last year, Fairview High School teachers and students listened as speakers from a program called Rachel’s Challenge taught them about how to deal with bullying in their school.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • Danny Ray Allred Former Cullman man sentenced in sex abuse case

    An Arley man accepted a plea bargain of a suspended 10-year sentence in connection to a 2012 Cullman County sexual abuse case involving his stepdaughter on April 4.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • lawenforcementreports.jpg Arrests, incidents reports for April 17, 2014

    Here is a look at the incidents that were reported to the Cullman City Police Department for Thursday:

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Local groups get $38,500 in grants

    The Cullman County Community Development Commission (CCCDC) awarded two local fire departments $10,000 each at its monthly meeting last week.

    April 18, 2014

  • Bussman Spay-neuter clinics lose bid to gain legitimacy

    Alabama Sen. Paul Bussman received more than $14,000 from veterinarians across the state — including $10,000 from the Political Animal political action committee — prior to filibustering a bill to allow nonprofit spay-neuter clinics to continue operating in the state.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • WSCC Gill Accomplished vocalists to perform Tuesday at WSCC

    Two amazing vocalists will perform on Tuesday, April 22 at Wallace State Community College as part of the college’s annual Arts in April celebration.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Relay For Life Survivors' breakfast

    The committee planning the annual Relay For Life of Cullman County event will once again host the Survivors’ Breakfast to honor both cancer survivors and caregivers. The breakfast will be held at 7 a.m., Wednesday, April 30, at Cullman Church of Christ. The church is located at the corner of Highway 157 and Childhaven Road.

    April 18, 2014