Town Crier News Staff
Following a short executive session during the Monday, Dec. 17, Manila City Council meeting, two police officers were hired. The two officers, Carl Warren and Carle Treadway, were hired as full time officers effective Jan. 2. The officers have been working on a part-time status.
Manila Chief of Police Jackie Hill said the two new members will bring the department back to full force.
Mayor Clifford Veach told the council he had met with Eddie Wayne Adams who is interested in working with the Manila Police Department as a reserve officer.
"I talked with the man and was impressed with him," Veach said. "He wants to help the city and has the certification to be a reserve officer. He is willing to serve with no pay. I think this could be to our advantage."
The council had no objections to Adams working as a reserve officer.
Dennis Caloway with Northeast Arkansas Probation Services addressed the council on handling probation services of the city court.
"The program can be a benefit to the city," Caloway said. "As a rule, there is better fine collection when people have to answer to someone. It also can save the cost on jail charges. There is no direct cost to the city."
The company has been serving in Leachville for the last six months.
"It is not our intention to increase the work load of the Chief of Police or the court clerk," Caloway said. "We monitor fine payments, DWI classes, and anger management classes ordered by the court."
The council voted unanimously to enter into a year contract with Arkansas Probation Services.
Tim Augustine addressed the city council about plans to open a recreation center for the youth.
The new business will be located across from city hall on Main Street.
Augustine assured the council members the business would be run by him and his wife giving the young people a place to go and getting them off the street.
"I want to work with the City Council on this project," Augustine said.
His plans for the center include pool tables, jukebox, video games and snack machines. Augustine agreed to close at 10 a.m. through the week and 11 p.m. on weekends.
Several council members discussed their concerns and some of the problems the city had with a previous recreation center located on Manila.
Augustine assured the council it would not happen.
"I will work closely with Police chief Jackie Hill with any problems that might come up," he said. "I know I can run it but I wanted to discuss my plans with the council."
The council agreed the young people do need a place and something to do. They gave Augustine their support and wished him well.
In other business:
*Mayor Veach reviewed the budget to date. He said he would have the amendments ready for the council's consideration at the January meeting.
*Veach informed the council of the pre-construction meeting held on Monday for the new fire station. Work should begin within a couple of weeks and the company has 150 construction days to complete the project. Veach also reported on a second pre-construction meeting held for the airport concrete project which should start this week if weather permits.
*Mayor Veach complimented City Attorney Wayne Wagner for the job he does for the city.
"We couldn't have a better city attorney," Veach said.