By Bill Short
Position 2 Alderman Al Bell is unopposed for a second term in the Nov. 6 Millington city elections.
Bell attended Shelby State Community College, where he received certification as an EMT/paramedic. He is retired from the Memphis Fire Department as a firefighter/paramedic supervisor.
A member of the Southwest Tennessee Building Officials Association, he is a residential and commercial building inspector certified by the International Code Council.
He previously served as a Millington police officer and building inspector for the city’s Codes Enforcement Office and is a member of the Millington Area Chamber of Commerce.
Bell and his wife Barbara have three children, six grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
To help determine whether proposed ordinances or resolutions are in the “best interest” of Millington and its residents, Bell said he will encourage Mayor Terry Jones to “openly discuss” their pros and cons with the aldermen before they are submitted for a vote.
Asked to list three significant issues in this election, he cited economic development, budget and finance and public safety.
To improve the economic and social “well-being” of Millington’s residents, Bell said his goal will always be to help create positions and/or retain jobs that will increase incomes and maintain the city’s tax base.
He noted that the city’s finances are based on its ability to budget properly with good management of available funds.
So, he will monitor “wasteful spending” and help maintain the budget to provide the “highest level of service” without raising taxes.
Because public safety is a “top priority” of all city leaders, Bell said he will commit to providing the best emergency medical, fire and police services that are available.
He called economic development the biggest concern facing Millington at this time. With no growth in jobs, housing or population, he said cities have a tendency to “stall,” and their infrastructure will rapidly deteriorate.
“I will always promote our city in a positive manner to anyone who will listen,” he noted. “I will also send e-mails and make telephone calls to potential businesses or industries that are looking at our city.”
Bell also said perceptions of community safety impact the way residents “feel and interact” in their city.
He believes that “pro-active” public safety personnel, such as police officers patrolling the streets and firefighters installing free smoke alarms and conducting annual inspections of all businesses, will “definitely” help encourage families to consider making Millington their permanent home.
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