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May 13-- A month and four days after Vidalia Police Chief Frank Waits was told to retire or be terminated by City Manager Nick Overstreet, the Vidalia city council voted Monday night to accept a proposal from the chief's attorney regarding his retirement.

frankwaites19Waits called in a lawyer from the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police after the city violated personnel policy in handling the chief's case and former city councilman Kay Stafford addressed the council and said the public still wants to know, "What are you going to charge the man with, what wrong has he done?"

Mayor Pro Tem Raymond Turner said the city will not discuss personnel matters, prompting Stafford to note a member of the city council had already violated that policy, "Lisa Chesser discussed it in the Vidalia Advance newspaper."

Chesser told the paper the man who allegedly shot and killed the manager of R.J. Pope's Menswear in November should have been charged in a domestic violence case which happened about two weeks before the murder and which she thought might have precluded the shooting.

Frank Waits says the agreement he signed with the city contains a non-disclosure clause prohibiting him from commenting except to say he enjoyed his time as police chief.

The council also heard an objection from Sweet Onion Cinema owner David Parker regarding the city-owned Pal Theater competing with a privately-owned, tax paying business.  He asked the council to prohibit the Pal from running movies on a regular basis and was referred to the city manager for further discussion.  Parker has unsuccessfully sought relief from Overstreet in the past.

In other actions the council:

*Approved a contract with Altamaha EMC for a 4% franchise fee for power sold in the city.

* Awarded a $22,875 contract to McLendon Enterprises to remove trees from near a runway at Vidalia Regional Airport and got a pat on the back from citizen Fred Godbee for the city's management of the airport..

* Agreed to put a four-way stop at the intersection of Smith and Second Streets.

* Thanked the family of the late former member of the Vidalia Rec Board, Rick Jordan, for a $5,000 donation in his memory to the Vidalia Recreation Department.

debris* Voted to close the Recycling Convenience Center at the the corner of Martin Luther King Avenue and Grand Street due to the inability to enforce dumping guidelines.

For staff use only.