By Allen Turner
Whiteville Police Chief Jeff Rosier had little trouble convincing city council members Tuesday night to approve a slight redesign of a parking lot planned off East Columbus Street between the existing police department and the new city hall. Council voted unanimously for the changes, recommended by Rosier and City Manager Darrin Currie, primarily to provide better security for police department staff.
Consideration of changes to the rear parking lot for the city hall was an add-on item to a short agenda published prior to the meeting. The parking lot redesign will provide better security by putting 20 parking spaces behind a chain link fence that will be accessible via an electronic gate and employee ID card reader. The main reason for the change is to provide a place for police employee cars to park without running the risk of being vandalized by people disgruntled by an arrest or unpleasant interaction with police.
Cost estimates for the redesign have not yet been obtained, but additional expense is expected to be minimal. “We have not asked the contractor a price yet,” Currie and Rosier said in a memo to council. “We wanted to get input from the Council to see if it is okay prior to having them do the calculations.”