Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Florence City Council District One/Russellville City Schools

Next to the mayoral race, District One may be the most hotly contested bone in Florence. Here are the players:

* Dave Smith - Current council member, Smith easily won the position four years ago after a campaign in which he arranged a news conference for his opponent's ex-husband to accuse her of bigamy. At the time, Smith denied malice and pleaded ignorance. During his current term, Smith has done all he could to derail plans for a new animal shelter on Fairgrounds Road, playing the race card. Smith has also done nothing to assist in building the new shelter. He is frequently seen throwing candy in parades. Yes, we believe him when he proclaims his ignorance. No campaign page at this time.

* Yolanda Verna Johnson (Falk) - Smith's opponent four years ago, Johnson is a doctoral student. One of her prioriites is a new College Street Bridge to connect West Florence with more facilities in that end of the county. Johnson has never held elected office. No campaign page at this time.

* Kaytrina P. Simmons - Simmons is a Florence businesswomen with her fingers in several business and social pies.This is Simnons' first entry into the political foray and she has heavily papered her district with campaign handouts. No campaign page at this time.

We'll be doing more in depth articles on this election in the future and request each candidate to send us their platforms, preferably in Google.doc format. We'll add that this district includes not only West Florence, but a large part of North Florence which seems to receive little or no attention. Comments?


We've had several readers ask about Brady Ann Irons' most recent arrest. We don't have any specifics at this time. We do know her pretrial had been set for May 31st and that she was taken  into custody on the afternoon of June 1st. She was most recently arrested on drug charges on April 6th; she remains in the Lauderdale Detention Center at this time.


From a Russellville parent on new school district rules:

The out of school zone ordinance passed was nothing but a tool given to the RHS principals to decide who's good enough to attend their schools. Yes I have an axe to grind. My son is a 504 plan student with Tourette's and ADHD, he was supposed to be grandfathered in under the rules. But he has been denied no matter if we can pay or not.

The new principal Jason Goodwin has all authority in these selections. I wonder if he ever thought that a student with health and medical conditions might be absent more than the average. Or one with ADHD might forget to turn in his doctor's excuses within the required 3 day period. After finally getting a return call from Goodwin, he cited absenteeism and a poor grade as his reasoning for denying my child. The biggest disappointment we have is our son will be a senior next year. And due to the cleansing going on he had to pickup and start over his final year!


We're also still getting a large number of questions about the recent sex trafficking case involving at least one Florence attorney. We're making a list of questions and attempting to get answers. Look for a new blog on this extremely interesting case soon.

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