Category: Community

From Mayor F.L. “Bubba” Copeland to The Smiths Station Community

To: The Smiths Station Community

From F.L. “Bubba” Copeland

Like others in our county and surrounding area, today’s severe weather and tornadic activity made an impact on the lives of citizens in the City of Smiths Station.

Storm damage has resulted in the closure of Lee roads 294 and 295, damage along Lee Road 430 in downtown Smiths Station and left several families in our city homeless.

We will be unable to utilize citizen assistance until the Red Cross has come and assessed the situation. Once that process is completed, however, we will rely heavily on volunteers to assist us with relief.

We grieve and extend our condolences to those in Beauregard and other portions of Lee County who were injured or lost their lives.

Storm Update-Emergency Personnel and Road Closures

All emergency personnel, search and rescue and recovery teams should meet at Sanford Middle School (1500 Lee Rd 11 Opelika, AL) for briefing and assignments. Any displaced families or those looking for loved ones can go to Providence Baptist Church (2807 Lee Rd 166 Opelika, AL), Red Cross will also be located here. Any media is directed to go to Beauregard High School (7343 Alabama Highway 51 Opelika, AL). Missing persons can be reported to: redcross.org/safeandwell or call 334-749-5651(Lee County Sheriff’s Office) The following roads are closed: Highway 51 from Lee Rd 42 to Lee Rd 39(diversions are set up at Hwy 51 and LR 11, hwy 51 and LR 44, Hwy 51 and Hwy 280.) Lee Rd 38, Lee Rd 39, Lee Rd 721, Lee Rd 294, Lee Rd 293. Property damage reporting should be done directly to your insurance company. Non-urgent reports can be made online at www.leecountysheriff.org/online-reporting.

Community Foundation of East Alabama establishes Disaster Relief Fund

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
COMMUNITY FOUNDATION OF EAST ALABAMA ESTABLISHES LEE COUNTY DISASTER RELIEF FUND
CONTACT: BARBARA PATTON 334-744-1020 or info@cfeastalabama.org

Our hearts and prayers are with all those impacted by the devastating tornado’s that hit parts of Lee County on Sunday, March 3.
In order to help those affected, the Community Foundation of East Alabama (CFEA), Inc. has established a Lee County Disaster Relief Fund.
The relief fund has been set up for donors seeking an official conduit to contribute monetary relief efforts.
The Community Foundation of East Alabama will receive, hold, and disperse monies contributed to this fund in a manner deemed appropriate by the CFEA Board of Directors with input from the Lee County Emergency Management Agency, and members of a Disaster Relief Committee. The distributions will help local organizations, municipalities, or other relief efforts as determined by the CFEA Board of Directors and advised by the Disaster Relief Committee.

Contributions may be made on the Community Foundation of East Alabama via the website, cfeastalabama.org, or directly to the Lee County Disaster Relief Fund or mailed to the Community Foundation of East Alabama, P. O. Box 165, Opelika, Alabama 36803-0165. Contributions are tax deductible to the extent allowed by the law. For additional information, please contact Barbara Patton at 334-744-1020 or info@cfeastalabama.org

Sgt. Billy Dingler Jr. presented annual James Anderson Award

A LCSO deputy, Anderson was struck and killed during a routine traffic stop on Sept. 24, 2009. Since 2010, the City of Smiths Station has presented this award to officers from the department to recognize their service and honor Anderson’s sacrifice.

During the award presentation, Copeland said that Dingler was very deserving of the award and is an exemplary figure in local law enforcement.

“I’ve watched you and known you for many, many years … as a friend first of all and then as a sheriff’s deputy. You have always conducted yourself with professionalism,” Copeland said. “Never have I ever seen you do anything selfishly. This award could not be given to a better person than you.”

Dingler said receiving the award came as a complete surprise. “It’s a big honor. James Anderson was one of the best,” Dingler said. “He had the drive and all to do the job. This is a real and something I didn’t expect.”

sgt. dingler family

Successful Smiths Station service day

Successful Smiths Station service day: We had over 100 volunteers who come help clean up the city.

On Saturday, the Smiths Station Government Center was full with volunteers who were ready to show some love to their city. During the annual clean up, there were over 100 volunteers who helped pick up trash around the community. Even Smitty made an appearance.

city clean up

Smiths Station City Council February 2019

Sgt. Billy Dingler Jr. of the Lee County Sheriff’s Office was presented with the 10th annual “James Anderson Award” during Smiths Station’s regular city council meeting last Tuesday.

Deputy Anderson was struck and killed during a routine traffic stop on Sept. 24, 2009. Since 2010, the City of Smiths Station has presented an annual award named in his honor to officers from the department as a way of recognizing their service and honoring Anderson’s sacrifice.

During the award presentation, Mayor Bubba Copeland told the audience of his longtime friendship with Dingler and expressed his gratitude for his more than 25 years of service with the sheriff’s office.

“I’ve watched you and known you for many, many years … as a friend first of all and then as a sheriff’s deputy. You have always conducted yourself with professionalism,” Copeland said. “Never have I ever seen you do anything selfishly. This award could not be given to a better person than you.”

The council also approved a resolution allowing Copeland to enter into an agreement with Alabama Power for the installation of new lighting fixtures in the Smiths Station Government Center’s parking lot to enhance safety.

In other business, the council: received a $2,000 economic development grant check from East Alabama Chamber of Commerce President/CEO Dennis Beson, which can be spent at the city’s discretion approved a petition from nearby residents Samuel and Mary Malloy allowing them to annex their property into Smiths Station.

The Smiths Station City Council meet on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. During the coming months, the first Tuesday’s work session will begin at 5 p.m. E.S.T., and second Tuesday’s will begin at 5:30 p.m. E.S.T., followed by their regular meeting at 6 p.m. E.S.T.

Meetings are held in the council chambers of the Smiths Station Government Center, which is located at 2336 Lee Road 430. For more information, call 334-297-8771 or visit www.smithsstational.gov.

City Council

Ben Rulon from the Columbus-based accounting firm Albright, Fortenberry and Ninas informed Smiths Station City Council members that the city received a clean opinion on its 2018 audit reports at last Tuesday’s regular meeting.

During his presentation, Rulon informed council members on specifics of the city’s financial status and concluded that the city’s unassigned fund balance supports 15 months of operating expenses.

The council also approved a resolution declaring that the City of Smiths Station will participate in the Alabama Department of Revenue’s statewide “Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday” that starts at 12:01 a.m. Feb. 22 and runs through Feb. 24 at midnight. To view the full list of tax-exempt items offered that weekend, visit revenue.alabama.gov.

In other business, the council:

– approved the audit report presented by Rulon

– approved a reimbursement to Mayor Bubba Copeland for his cellular phone usage

– and heard reports from Copeland on the progress of the Jones Store Museum project which is slated for completion later this year.

The Smiths Station City Council meet on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month, with a work session beginning at 5:30 p.m. E.S.T. and regular meeting at 6 p.m. E.S.T. Their meetings are held within the council chambers of the Smiths Station Government Center, which is located at 2336 Lee Road 430. For more information, call 334-297-8771.

Businesses of the Month – Mamee’s Kitchen Authentic Jamaican Cuisine and Catering and Jay B’s To-Go by Platinum Cuts

Business of the Month – Mamee’s Kitchen Authentic Jamaican Cuisine and Catering and Jay B’s To-Go by Platinum Cutsowned and operated by the husband-and-wife duo of Michael and Lasharn Anderson and barbershop by experienced barber Johnny Matthews

Flavorful Jamaican cuisine and quality barber services can be found at Mamee’s Kitchen and Jay B’s To-Go by Platinum Cuts, the City of Smiths Station’s Co-Businesses of the Month.

Opened last February, the restaurant is owned and operated by the husband-and-wife duo of Michael and Lasharn Anderson and barbershop by experienced barber Johnny Matthews.

Born and raised in an impoverished region of Jamaica, Michael said he learned from his older sister and mother “Mamee” who serves as the restaurant’s namesake.

“I love cooking and it’s really what I enjoy to do. My mother and my sister were my big inspirations and who I learned to love it from,” Michael said. “When I was 10-12 years old, I had to start cooking for myself in the mornings because my parents were busy or at work.”

During his formative years, Michael said he desired to take a path that would lead him out of Jamaica, with his primary options being track and field or music. He chose what came most naturally.

“Track and field was my getaway. In Jamaica, you learn to run at a really young age,” Michael said. “I applied myself in school and got grades so that I could receive a scholarship and attend college somewhere.”

Michael’s hard work paid off, becoming one of the country’s most coveted high school runners and prospects by scouts from American schools and universities. It was during his recruitment that he said he toured Auburn University’s campus and fell in love with the East Alabama area.

“It was lowkey and not too much excitement going on. So, in 1991, I decided that I wanted to go to Auburn,” Michael said.

At Auburn, Michael made a name for himself as an elite sprinter, at one point becoming the SEC champion in the 400-meter dash.

After finishing his degree in sport recreation and management, Michael furthered his track career, competing internationally and signing a short deal to run for Nike. Following his retirement from the sport, he got into coaching, working stints at North Carolina A&T and athletes from Jamaica’s national team.

Returning to the area in the late 2000s, Michael switched paths and joined the Lee County Sheriff’s Office in 2011. At Lasharn’s prompting, he retired from law enforcement early last year to focus on his new business concept.

Exotic items like oxtail and goat are prepared at the restaurant, but dishes like curry shrimp or jerk chicken will be familiar to Americans who are new to Jamaican cuisine. Michael explained that they place an emphasis on strong seasoning, which has drawn rave reviews from his patrons.

“Anybody can cook chicken, but it’s all about the seasoning. A lot of folks think that Jamaican food is all spicy, but it’s not,” Michael said.

The majority of the food Michael prepares is made from Jamaican-imported items, as well as some of the beverages he serves.

Next door at Jay B’s, Michael explained that Matthews has built a loyal following through providing customers with traditional, quality barber services in a laid-back atmosphere.

“At Jay B’s, he can give you a great haircut, shave and all the basic things you’d expect to find at a barbershop.”

According to Lasharn, reception and support for the two businesses has been solid during the last 11 months.

“People have been really good to us since we opened … and we have a lot of loyal customers (for both businesses) that keep coming back,” Lasharn said.

Following are hours of operation for the two businesses, both on Eastern Standard Time:

Jay B’s: Tuesdays, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Wednesdays 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Thursdays 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.; 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. on Fridays and 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. on Saturdays.

Mamee’s: 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

For more information, call 334-480-8805. The businesses are located at 16583 U.S. Highway 280.

MLK Registration

2019 MLK City-Wide Clean Up Registration Form

Date: February 16th 2019

Time: 9:00 AM

Location: Smiths Station Government Center

Lunch will be provided.

Annual Christmas Tree Lighting

Christmas tree lighting
Have a Merry Christmas from the Smiths Station!

Smiths Station’s annual Lighting Ceremony is a new tradition, in our cities young history. This event is free to the public. Come see Santa, enjoy Christmas carols and witness our tree lighting. This year, the ceremony will be taking place on Tuesday, December 4. Everyone is welcome for a day of joyful festivities that is guaranteed to put you in the holiday spirit! Take a look below at the times and location of our event.

6:00 p.m. Eastern Time

Smiths Station Government Center
2336 Lee Road 430