ROBERTSDALE, Ala. -- “In God We Trust.”
Those words have been used on U.S. currency since 1864. In 1956, they were adopted as our national motto and now, thanks to a grassroots effort by a local resident, they will be displayed in the …
ROBERTSDALE, Ala. -- “In God We Trust.”
Those words have been used on U.S. currency since 1864. In 1956, they were adopted as our national motto and now, thanks to a grassroots effort by a local resident, they will be displayed in the Robertsdale City Council’s chambers.
The city council voted unanimously to adopt a resolution to that effect during its meeting Monday morning with all council members present.
Area resident Jon Butler made a presentation to the council at its July 1 meeting, which was tabled for review by the city’s attorney to ensure there were no legal issues.
“I have not checked with any other municipality on the matter,” said city attorney Ken Raines at Monday’s meeting, “but in my own personal opinion there shouldn’t be a problem.”
Butler said the request is part of a grass-roots effort that began in California to add the words, which is the national motto, in meeting places at all levels of government.
“Through the years our nation is being separated further and further from God,” he said, “and we’re trying to do everything we can to honor God. This is the Bible Belt of Alabama. If they can do this in California, I see no reason why it can’t be done here.”
Butler said the idea has also been brought before, and is being considered by, the Foley City Council, and plans are to bring the idea in front of all municipalities and the County Commission.
In other business Monday, the council voted to allow the Robertsdale High School Band Boosters to advertise the band’s annual Play-A-Thon on the city’s digital billboard on Highway 59. Band booster Kristy Nordberg made the request at Monday’s council meeting.
The Play-A-Thon will be held Sept. 28 at J.D. Sellars Stadium during which time the band will be practicing its annual halftime show. The event begins at 8 a.m. and will continue until 8 p.m., Nordberg said.
The council also agreed Monday to changes in renovation plans for the city’s PZK Civic Center.
The $400,000 project, which will be funded in part by a $100,000 federal appropriation and the refinancing of a general obligation warrant, began at the end of May.
The council agreed at Monday’s meeting to use brick around the bottom of the poured concrete decking, which will replace wooden decking on the structure.
In June the council decided to move the decking to the east side of the building and move the construction of a T-wing with a side entrance and a drive-through, 1,000-square-foot covered canopy to the west side so that construction would not encroach on oak trees on the east side of the building.
A 3,000-square-foot addition will also be added to the back of the building, including a kitchen, restrooms and a meeting room. One of the current restrooms will be turned into a dressing room, while the other will become a hallway leading into the back of the building.
It was also decided Monday, once the additions are completed, crews will paint the roof a uniform color rather than stripping and replacing the entire roof.
Both the brick and the roof color will match other structures used in the city, Murphy said.
“We’ve used those same colors on the concessions at the park, on the city’s splash pad, the library and the jail facility,” he said. “We decided that making everything a uniform color, it would make city structures look more presentable.”
The PZK (which stands for Poucny a Zabavni Krouzek, translated as Educational Recreational Circle), a group of Czechoslovakian immigrants, built the structure to serve settlers who came to Robertsdale from the North in the 1920s. The hall, built in 1924, was also used by German and Swedish settlers.
The PZK donated the property to the city of Robertsdale on Aug. 17, 1992, and was closed for just over a year, from Dec. 10, 1992 to just before Christmas of 1993, while the city spent about $100,000 to renovate the building.
In February of 1994, the property was dedicated to the city with the property being renamed PZK Civic Park and the meeting hall named the PZK Civic Center.
No action was needed at Monday’s meeting on the renovation plans, which were approved by the council in May. The improvements will bring the structure into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, Mayor Charles Murphy said in a May interview. Plans are to have the project completed by the end of 2013.