Bastrop Mayor Betty Alford-Olive led her final City Council meeting Thursday night.
Olive presented plaques to several city employees who are retiring from the Fire Department, the Police Department and Public Works Department.

Fire Captain David Jester is retiring after 27 years of service. Fire Chief Eric Montgomery commended Jester on his commitment to the department.

"David is an outstanding individual and a wonderful employee," Montgomery said. "We are losing a good man."

Jester also spoke, thanking the City for its support throughout the years.

"God blessed me everyday I was here, He kept us all safe and I have worked with some of the best people in the world," Jester said. "I appreciate the opportunity I was given to serve the community and take care of my family at the same time."

Montgomery also commended Captain Jamie Walker on his retirement.

"Jamie has worked for the Fire Department for 26 years and I wish we had more men like him," Montgomery said. "He has always went above and beyond the call of duty and we will truly miss him."

Walker thanked the City for the opportunity given to him to serve.

Olive then recognized Police Department Captain Sandra Thomas.

"I had the privilege of naming Sandra Thomas Captain of Detectives," said Olive. "She is the first female to hold this position and is part of the history of Bastrop."

Police Chief Downey Black also spoke of Thomas.

"I am really going to miss Sandra. She ran her division very well and is someone I could also talk things over with," said Black.

"I just thank the City and the Administration for always being very, very good to me," Thomas said. "I started here in 1989 with the intention of being a radio dispatcher, never thinking I could be where I am today. I am going to miss the people of Bastrop, but I will be around!"

Johnny Musgrove, 10-year City Garage worker, was not in attendance.

Olive then recognized Willie Charles McKee.

"I think I have been to three or four retirements for Willie Charles," Olive said. "This gentleman has really given of himself for the past 35 years and I want to present a Lifetime City of Bastrop Ambassador Award to him, on this retirement.

"Willie Charles began as a fireman in 1977 and has been a driver for the fire department, a Fire Prevention Officer, the Chief of Fire Prevention, the Fire Chief, the Chief of Staff, the City Clerk, the Public Works Director and the Director of Special Projects," Olive said.

McKee expressed his appreciation to the Mayor and City.

"When you were listing all my job titles, I had the thought 'was the City trying to find a job I could actually do?'" McKee said. "But, I am truly thankful for all I have served under and with as well as the citizens of Bastrop and God for allowing me to work."

As the meeting continued, Olive talked about the block grant received to fix various roads inside the city. McKee explained the areas to be repaired and citizen Boots Farrar asked how it was decided which roads would be fixed.

"The ares for repair are based on the census track and the selection criteria of the grant," McKee explained. "The criteria takes into account income levels of the neighborhoods and the last census of the area."

Vantage Healthcare was approved to provide health insurance for employees for the upcoming year and the Bastrop Daily Enterprise was approved as the Official Journal for the City.

Mayor Olive closed the meeting with a farewell speech in which she stated her appreciation to her staff as well as the citizens of Bastrop.

"My philosophy as a public servant is to serve a cause greater than self, to seek to give so that life can be better for others rather than what can be gained to make life better for self," Olive said. "My personal motto is that the privilege of serving is an honor, the fulfillment of my duty is an obligation and a legacy of accomplishment is my peace of mind. God bless each of you, this City, State and Country."