By Ray King

A resolution to change the name of Hazel Street in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., was pulled just before the start of the Pine Bluff City Council meeting Tuesday night.

The council was meeting Tuesday because of the July 4 holiday on Monday.

The resolution was sponsored by Council Member Glen Brown Sr., who was asked about it and about the choice of Hazel Street by Deltaplex News.

As he said, Brown has sponsored similar legislation in the past and was asked about the inconvenience changing the name of the street would cause.

With Council member Lloyd Holcomb Jr., absent, the council voted 6-1 to approve legislation sponsored by Council member Ivan Whitfield that provides for a pay raise to $30,000 annually for current full-time city employees who make less than that amount.

In asking for support, Whitfield said there are nine or 10 employees who make less than $30,000 and it will cost the city $15,000 to raise those salaries for the rest of the year.

Council member Steven Shaner cast the only no vote to the resolution while Whitfield, Brown Sr., Glen Brown Jr., Bruce Lockett, Steven Mays and Joni Alexander voted yes.

In other business, an ordinance to adjust the rates customers are charged to hook up to the city’s sewer system was read for a second time and will be up for a final vote when the council meets July 18 at 5:30 p.m.

The only other item on the agenda was a resolution appointing James House to the Pine Bluff Planning Commission was approved without dissent. House, who worked as an engineer for the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department for 42 years will replace Carolyn Jackson whose term has expired. He will serve until June 1, 2025.