Saturday, January 12, 2013

Did Muscle Shoals Civil Service Board Violate Sunshine Law?

Late last year, two local elected entities were accused of violating the Alabama Sunshine Law--the Florence Board of Education and the Rogersville City Council. Now Tuscumbia attorney Billy Underwood has requested that the a new and different Muscle Shoals Civil Service Board hear the case of Greg Scoggins, a terminated city police officer accused of improper conduct. Mr. Underwood claims the current board has talked freely concerning the case outside the proper legal confines.

From a January 10, 2013, letter signed by Mr. Underwood:

Honorable Mayor David Bradford
2010 Avalon Avenue
Muscle Shoals, Alabama 35661

Dear Mayor;

It has recently been brought to my attention that members of the Civil Service Board entered into concerted discussions about Greg Scoggins and his appeal before them. They entered into discussions with Chief Robert Evans regarding the policy rules and procedures that were followed.

My understanding is that their sentiment was to uphold your ruling. This seems to be more of a Kangaroo Court atmosphere than a fair and impartial hearing before the Civil Service Board. I have been told and verily believe Ricky Williams, as the gatekeeper of making sure all hearings are fair, literally got extremely upset over the actions of the Civil Service Board and questioned the women sent by his Clerk’s office as to why they didn’t silence the premature discussions. Scoggins is entitled to a hearing before an impartial panel. It is readily apparent he has been prejudged and compromised. I am asking that there be a special Civil Service Board appointed to hear Scoggins’ case.

From a January 11, 2013, letter signed by Mr. Underwood:

Bill Aycock, Chairman
Civil Service Board
2010 Avalon Avenue
Muscle Shoals, AL 35661

Dear Mr. Aycock;

As you know, I have asked that the hearing set Tuesday, January 15 be rescheduled. Scoggins’ trial in District Court is February 19, 2013.

I would also like to give you notice that, if we’re having the hearing on January 15, I intend to first put Lisa Ricks and Elaine Coan on to ascertain what discussions were made prematurely with the Civil Service Board about Greg Scoggins’ case. These two individuals had discussions with Ricky Williams, informing him of the chatter by certain members of the Civil Service Board concerning Scoggins. I am sure Ricky Williams must have had selective amnesia when he denied knowing anything about conversations that were held at the Civil Service Board meeting. I don’t take lightly people denying those discussions were made.

If I have to I will subpoena all the other department heads to find out what exactly was said.

Many professions and appointed/elected positions are subject to certain ethics. It has always been an enigma to us that there are those who openly violate these ethics. Kudos to Mr. Underwood, no matter what we personally think of Greg Scoggins, for his stance on this matter.


And now an interesting letter from a Gnat Pond businessman:

To Mz. Shoalanda,

First I wants to say I ain't confess to nothin cause I ain't do nothin. Nexts, I wants to say I truly appreciate yo blog on the fuzz at Gnat Pond shooting all them innocent turtles and blamin us honest businessmans.

This Killer Turtle Dweebs gang has gots to be stopped before they move on up to possums and those bad a** things that look like possums but has shells. 

Do whats yo can an if yo evr need a good deal come see me. Just asks for Kevin or Dollar Bill from the Ham and we'll fixs yo right up.


Who comprise the Muscle Shoals Civil Service Board? The following is taken from the city's website:

CIVIL SERVICE BOARD (3 year terms)
** Elected by employees, not subject to appointment by Mayor and City Council
Mike Price 109 Brooke Drive 383-0988 June '13
Raymond Eggleston 810 Firestone Avenue 381-1447 June '15
Donna Tipps 314 W. Nassau 381-7687 June '14
Leon Madden 203 Elliott Avenue 381-9241 June '15
**Bill Aycock 310 Poplar Drive 383-1192 June '13

We'll be happy to publish any commentary from the civil service board members who may wish to respond.



  1. Brings back old memories of the secret meetings the city council used to have. When the M&M's complained to the Ethics Commission and the city was told they must be a public notice, they started posting an 8 X 11 sheet in the city hall window an hour or so before a meeting. We had to set up a round robin door check and then activate the telephone chain.

    1. The sad thing is that these board/council members know they're violating the law. They just don't care.

  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. We removed this comment after a second reading since it contained a statement that could possibly be libelous.

  3. Can you smell a rat?? Did you know that there are numerous terms used for informants? Rat, Snitch, Stool Pigeon, Dobber, Fink, Informer, Nark, Sneak, Source, Tattle Tale...just to name a few!

    Some of the largest crime families in our country have been brought down by rats among their ranks. Some even close family members. A local family, well known for their life of crime, was brought down during Snow Mountain because of a family member telling information over a recorded phone conversation!

    Mayor Bradford is probably waking up everyday wondering if his rat at the Waste Water Treatment Plant has been worthy of all of the backlash he has caused at City Hall! We know that city employees elect the Civil Service board members to a term of 3 years. They are elected to a leadership position just as our Mayor and City Council! As such they are entrusted to lead and make decisions, not to run and ask the Mayor, Chief and Council, " What do you want us to do?" just to remain in good graces of the Turtle Slayer himself!

    If we remember the story of Judas and how he betrayed Jesus for 30 pieces of Silver! Even after Jesus knew what Judas had done to him, Jesus still treated Judas with RESPECT and HONESTY! So in closing every time you elected officials are dropping off Cheese off at the WWP please remember ...WWJD!!