Census official addresses Manila City Council

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Manila City Council met Monday, Oct. 19, and discussed plans to work with the U.S. Census Bureau to obtain an accurate count of city residents during the 2010 census.

Mayor Clifford Veach introduced Census Bureau representative Marilyn Kountz who encouraged the city to join in partnership to promote the participation in the upcoming 2010 census.

"We need your help in creating awareness of next year's census," Kountz said. "There are just 10 simple questions to answer on the census and it is very important to the city for every citizen to fill it out and send it in. A lot of industrial location decisions are made using population data. The census form is a legal document. As a partner you agree to make people aware of the importance of the census."

After a brief discussion Mayor Veach and all council members present signed Partnership Support Program agreements, with plans to find ways to promote citywide awareness.

Mayor Veach introduced Peggy Mitt, a candidate for Mississippi County Treasurer. Current Treasurer Glenda Hollingsead plans to retire in 2010, leaving a vacancy in that office.

The council discussed budget comparisons and percentages to date for income and expenses.

"We are 75 percent through the year and we are doing good on our budget," Veach said. "We have received 73 percent of our budgeted income and used 69 percent our budgeted expenditures. All departments have done well. We have had higher state turnback funds this year, thanks in part for our State Representative Charlotte Wagner. We are anticipating another good year next year."

Mayor Veach reported the new weather sirens have been installed. New low frequency radios will be purchased to activate the sirens.

Mayor Veach reviewed plans for a new public works headquarters, a shop and under-roof storage, to be erected behind the fire station. The new structure will be the same color as the station.

"This is something Manila has never had," Veach said. "This will meet our needs, and is something that is way overdue. The cost is estimated at $278,000 and we hope to qualify for a 35 percent Rural Development Grant. The old property would make good use for apartments, and we hope to sell it."

The council voted to go forward with the construction and grant.

The council discussed painting the roof at the Airport Center, at an estimated cost of $6,500. More details will be obtained.

Mayor Veach reported the city had received $235,000 from FEMA for work during ice storm. Total expenses were listed at $252,000.

The council agreed to repair windows and paint the Boy Scout building (former library), at an estimated cost of $2,250, with expenses to come out of the General Account. Air conditioners will also be moved to new location.

The Manila Christmas Parade was set for Dec. 5, beginning at 6 p.m., with the parade line-up to begin at 5 p.m.

The council approved the option for Southworth to purchase the building on Olympia for $1,000.

"Southworth has been good to us, and they are an excellent industry," Veach said.

The council passed a resolution to apply for a $35,000 GIF Enhancement Grant for a heating and air conditioning system at the Airport Center.

Alderman Donnie Wagner complimented the ambulance service on a doing such a good job for the city.

The next regularly scheduled council meeting will be Monday, Nov. 16, beginning at 6:30 p.m., at city hall.

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