Tri-City Ledger -

By Gretchen McPherson
Ledger Staff 

Century Council votes 3 to 2 to spend $4K to train


March 21, 2019

The town of Century will spend $4,000 to send three town employees to Texas to train for the town's gas billing system following a 3 to 2 split vote at Monday night's council meeting.

Century Mayor Hawkins sought the council's approval to send Gas Superintendent Wally Kellette, Billing Clerk Toni Simmons and Kim Godwin to Tyler, Texas for training on April 9 and 10, to receive training that is required to properly utilize the town's gas billing system.

Brooks asked why three had to go and Hawkins said so that there would be more than one person who would be trained.

Councilwoman Brooks suggested having the company come to the town to train, which would also cost $4,000, although Hawkins said they would not receive the full and proper training if they came to Century.

Kellette told the council that the town is working on an older version of the billing system and they would be training on a newer version so the town's software could be updated.

Brooks said she felt Kellette needed to be in the town for those two days.

“We have to make a really good decision instead of such harsh judgements,” said Councilman James Smith. “We really need to figure out what is going to be the best for Century, so maybe we should table this until we find can out what is going to be beneficial. Ultimately, two days of training if they have to go to Texas for it, is going to make a world of difference for a town that is suffering a great deal. We need to think rational and make sure our people get the proper training so we can progress Century instead of regressing. Let's do what's best for Century. Mayor, please give them a call and ask what would be the best option for us.”

Hawkins said they would get better training there in Texas, agreeing with Kellette. Kellette said he felt that the reason Century is in the situation with the billing it's in is because one person knew how to work the billing system and this training of more people would help resolve the situation.

Part of the money spent is to update the town's software, according to Kellette.

“From what I understood, it would be better for us to go there because of the trainers and the different technical people on staff there,” said Kellette. “Versus phone calls, if they have to stay longer, it will cost more.”

Hawkins said the money for the trip is in the budget. Smith said he felt like the council should make a motion to make it happen to send them to Texas for the training.

Smith made the motion to send the three town employees to Texas to train which was seconded by Councilman Luis Gomez.

Smith, Councilwoman McMurray and Gomez voted yes and Councilman Ben Boutwell and Brooks voted no.


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