An Interview with Sandra Killen Burroughs

by Bobby Inman
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I had a chance to interview Sandra Killen Burroughs, the Mayor for the Town of Lexington, Alabama.  For you that are not familiar with the Town of Lexington, the Town is located in the North East corner of Lauderdale County.  The latest United States Census Bureau shows the population of Lexington as 734.  The Census Bureau further states that the Town of Lexington covers an area of 3.2 Square Miles.

From the Encyclopedia of Alabama Website, the following information is given on the Town of Lexington:

         Lexington is located in northeastern Lauderdale County in the far northwest part of the state, on the Alabama/Tennessee line. It has a mayor/council form of government.


   The town of Lexington was originally established on the site of four 40-acre parcels of land purchased by early settler Lewis Marshall, who arrived in 1818. The origin of the town’s name is uncertain; it might have been named after Lexington, Massachusetts, or it might have been named after the Lexington District in South Carolina, as Marshall may have been from that district.


   The first town center was established around 1853. Lexington suffered badly during the Civil War, with a number of homes, churches, and businesses burned by Union forces. The town recovered economically after Reconstruction. Its first public school was built in 1907 on land donated by local businessman Andrew Lee. The school was superseded by a new building in 1923    Lexington incorporated in 1959.”


Sandra agreed to sit down for an interview for the Quad Cities Daily.   Below are ten questions that I came up with for Mayor Burroughs to answer.  Her answers follow the questions in italics.


  1. Tell me about Sandra Killen Burroughs. Your education, family life, upbringing, etc.


“I was born and raised in Lexington, Alabama.  I went to and graduated from Lexington High School.  I played sports there.  I then attended the University of North Alabama were I graduated with a double Major.


I have a Son named Hunter. He went to the University of Alabama where he graduated with a Degree in Special Education.  He is currently coaching Special Education at Lexington


I also have a Step Son and Step Daughter as well as a Grandson and two Step Grandchildren. 


My Husband’s name is Barry.  He works at G.E. 


I have been in Lexington my whole life.  I love this Town and want it to prosper. “


  1. This is your first term as Mayor for the Town of Lexington. Describe your term so far.

“It has been a learning experience.  You think with living here all your life that you know the Town, but you don’t.  It is like I am looking in instead of looking out.  Municipal Government is something totally different. 

For an example the Town needed a new Garbage Truck. The one we had we got from the County.  It was basically worn out and we needed a new one.  So I had to start doing research on Garbage Trucks.  I learned stuff like horse power, yardage, single Axle and tonnage.    A new Garbage Truck costs $100,000.  However we were doing more maintenance on our used Garbage Truck than what the payment would be on the new one.  So when we got the new truck, I was so excited. 

That may sound simple to some but having to do the research on the Truck made the purchase more important to me.”


  1. As Mayor of the Town of Lexington, what would you like to see for the Town? What is your vision?


“I would really like for us to build a Rec or Community Center.  The Center could be a place that could provide a place for the youth to do things.  Also, this center could hold indoor concerts and events. “


  1. A business paying sales tax is the key component to help boast a Town or Cities Economical Standings. Are there any plans in motion to bring new businesses into the Town of Lexington?

“We are constantly looking at ways to bring new businesses into the Town of Lexington.  We are currently meeting with a gentleman about rental and manufacturing property.”


  1. I asked this question to Mayor Kerry underwood of Tuscumbia. “In a recent City Council Meeting, there was discussion about receiving Sales Tax from online sales and you had made a comment that the City of Tuscumbia had just received a check for $20.00”.  In regards to the Town of Lexington, has the Town gotten any money from online sales?   If not, how do you think this should be addressed?


“I believe our check was around $10.00.  I believe that if the sales tax went back to the zip code where the item was shipped to would benefit Lexington as well as other Towns and Cities.  This is something that does need to be addressed.”


  1. What is it like to be the first female mayor of Lexington?


“Well I didn’t set out to be the first female Mayor of Lexington but its pretty neat to be a part of history.  I am not sure what the male to female ratio is for Mayors for the State of Alabama, but from the meetings I attend with the Alabama League of Municipalities, there are far more male mayors.   I don’t think gender allows anyone to be a better or worse Mayor.   It is like any other venture that you set out to tackle.  It all depends on what you put in the job.”


  1. You were recently appointed to the executive committee of the Alabama League of Municipalities.   Tell me what the duties of this position are?


“It was a huge honor.  The League is made up of the Mayors and City Councils of 67 Counties in Alabama.  Currently there are 8 Counties that are not involved with the League.  The League provides help.  They give advice to Town and Cities when needed.  There is a lot of knowledge there.  We meet 4 times a year. 


The League also provides classes where City Council Members can become certified, basically like Continuing Education.”


  1. What are some of the issues that the City Council of Lexington is currently looking into? Issues that may have been from the previous Council.  What is being done to correct these issues?

“Our biggest problem is Water and Sewer.  We buy our water from East Lauderdale Water.  We are currently trying to find our own water source.  So far we have tested 3 sites.   We have just completed a section of new water lines due to a Grant from NACLOG. 

Our Sewer system is 25 years old.   It was put in poorly when it was done back then.  We are looking at ways to improve or replace this. “

  1. What is the biggest crime issue in the Town of Lexington?


“I would say our biggest problem is speeding.  The Second would be Domestic Related Incidents.  However, every Town and City has problems with Domestic Related Incidents.”


  1. In closing, what would you like to tell the citizens of the Town of Lexington as well as the readers of the Quad Cities Daily?


“I want to take a quote for JFK and turn it around a bit. ‘Ask not what your Town can do for you, but what can you do for your Town.’


The Citizens of Lexington need to attend the City Council Meetings so they know what’s going on and also to voice their opinion.  We can’t fix problems if we don’t know what’s wrong.  We value the citizen’s views and opinions. 


Also we ask that you shop locally as much as you can.  Every little dime helps with tax money for the Town.  If you fill up here in Lexington, that tax money can be utilizes here in Lexington.  These tax dollars is what provides the citizens of Lexington with a Police Department as well as a Fire Department. 


We want the citizens of Lexington to be a part of Lexington.  They are the eyes and ears of the Community.  They can let us know what we are doing wrong but also what we are doing right.  It gives us direction on what we need to work on.”


    Bobby Inman has retired twice from Law Enforcement after 21 years of Service.  He is a Consultant for Southern Heritage Gun & Pawn in Tuscumbia.   He has articles published in Law & Order Magazine, Police Marksman Magazine, Guns & Weapons for Law Enforcement Magazine as well as several published ebooks on Amazon, Kobo Writing, as well as Nook (Barnes & Noble).  He is owner of Poopiedog, an Animal Rescue Dachshund, who is his constant companion.   He is a Senior Investigative Reporter for the Quad Cities Daily

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