(Town Crier photo/Nan Snider)
The Caraway council voted to raise rural water rates, and repair tennis courts, walking track, park parking, and front parking lot at the fire department at the regular meeting Monday evening, Aug. 13.
The council voted to raise Buffalo Island Regional Water rates to $2.00 per thousand gallons of water sold. The current rate is $1.50.
Twelve thousand dollars was approved for asphalting, painting, and straightening of the poles at the city tennis court. New lines will be drawn and nets purchased. Plans are to look at finishing the basketball court at a later date.
The council voted to put the walking track back together by using asphalt to patch and seal an eight foot wide pathway, in order to comply with their existing Parks and Recreation grant. The adjacent parking lot will be paved in order to make the park wheelchair accessible, at an additional cost of $6,000.
Fire Chief Bo James proposed fixing the hole in front of the fire department bay door, along with paving the parking lot. After a brief discussion the council approved fixing both for an estimated $2,000, with $1,000 to be taken out of Building and Repair, and $1,000 from the General Fund.
The council approved the purchase of poles for the new rodeo arena last month, not to exceed $8,000. The actual purchase of the poles totaled $8,153.40. The council voted to pay the additional $153.40 for the purchase.
Rick Stevens was hired to temporarily fill Lisa Taylor's position of city treasurer/recorder, in her absence due to the loss of her daughter Caroline Taylor. Taylor has asked to be away from the job until September. Stevens will be hired on a monthly basis, as needed, from council meeting to council meeting, with his salary pro-rated at the same rate as Taylor's.
Mayor Barry Riley presented certificates of appreciation to Bernard Berry, Joyce Berry, and Hailey Faulkner for their volunteer work in maintaining the city's flower beds and helping to keep the city beautiful.
Riley proposed the re-establishment of the City Beautification Committee, to add to the overall look and cleanliness of the city.
"I would like to see the committee have an established city account to use for purchasing necessary supplies," Riley said. "The former Beautification Committee had a personal account but not a city one. I have been working on this transition since March. If the committee starts selecting a Yard of the Month it will encourage people to keep their city clean. They can build a sign to be placed in the yard, and present them with an award for their accomplishment."
Councilman Marvin Browning proposed the city restock the fishpond as residents have reported the depletion of fish at the pond.
"Previously the city donated $200, the Lion's Club $200, and the Parks Commission $200," Browning said. "If everyone upped their donation by $100, then we would be able to purchase 3,000 fish for the pond. It wouldn't take long before the pond would be alive with fish again.
"If we are going to have a pond, we need to stock it. I think the Lion's Cub and Park Commission will match the city's donation."
The council voted to donate $300 towards restocking the pond.
A lengthy executive session was held to discuss the hiring of a police officer. After the aldermen reconvened they tabled the decision until next month to vote on hiring a new officer or paying overtime to the current ones.
Fire Chief James expressed the need to use auxiliary firemen to help the department, in times of need. The age will run 16 and up.
The next regularly scheduled council meeting will be held on Sept. 13, beginning at 6 p.m.
Photo, from left: Caraway Mayor Barry Riley, on the right, presented certificates of appreciation to Hailey Faulkner, Joyce Berry, and Bernard Berry for their efforts to maintain city flower beds and keep the city beautiful.