Monette Council approves grant application for fire department

Wednesday, March 3, 2004

The Monette City Council met in regular session on Monday, Feb. 23, approving grant application to purchase a new fire truck, discussing plans for Clean Sweep, discussed a ribbon cutting, ball park grant and a city-wide fund day.

Bob Blankenship, Monette Fire chief, addressed the council concerning the need to apply for FEMA grant funds to fund the purchase of a new fire truck.

"Applications are due on March 10 for 2004 grant funds," Blankenship said. "We need to upgrade and replace a vehicle, possibly two, with the purchase of a new fire truck.

"The truck will be a pumper 750 gallon, with generator and extrication mounted on it," Blankenship said. "It should run somewhere in the neighborhood of $240,000. Our share would be 10 percent.

"We currently have a 1971 International pumper and a 1986 Ford," Blankenship said. "They are totally overloaded. The new truck would replace both of these. Their resale could run possibly $10,000 to $12,000. The new truck will have a 300 gallon foam package, and all it will need is a radio."

"I'm in favor of us keeping up our equipment," Alderman Earl Read said.

Alderman Steve Suber asked if the purchase of the new truck would improve the city's fire rating.

"We are at seven now and this will help," Blankenship said.

The council approved the request to allow the fire department to apply for the grant.

Councilman Byron Sparkman announced that the city-wide yard sale will be held on May 1 with "clean sweep" held the next week.

"The water project has started east and west, and we have verbal approval to go ahead and complete the project," Alderman Tom Carroll said.

Alderman Steve Suber inquired about progress being made on water drainage problems near Christopher Homes.

"We have done the temporary work to reroute water drainage going east," Monette Mayor David Fletcher said. "We will follow up on that."

Alderman Ernestine Harrell announced plans for a ribbon cutting ceremony for Monette Discount Drug at 2:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 27. The drug store will be holding an open house during that time.

"We did not get the $300,000 parks and tourism grant that we applied for in November," Harell said. "We plan to try again next year. We would like to apply for a 50/50 matching grant for $30,000 to at least get our land and site work done now. It is a Rural Community Grant with the city's part being $15,000. We can apply in March and will know something in May.

"We have no guarantee that we will get a park grant next year either, but we have to keep trying," Harrell said.

The council approved a resolution to apply for the Rural Community Grant.

Monette Youth Association President David Clark announced that the youth association would like to hold a fundraiser at the city park on Saturday, March 27. The proceeds will go toward work needed at the ball park.

The council approved the plans for the Monette Youth Association Fun Day with the use of the park pavilion.

The next regular scheduled council meeting is 7 p.m. March 22, at City Hall.

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