Manila Council remembers Councilman Cherry

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Manila Mayor Clifford Veach, City Attorney Wayne Wagner, Clerk Susie Parker, members of the council Joni Isabell, LeRoy Douglas, Linda Donovan, Donnie Wagner, and Larry "Whiz" Davis, along with guests observed a moment of silence in memory of Council member Dean Cherry at the November meeting on Monday evening. Alderman Cherry died Nov. 4. He had served on the Manila City Council for 24 years.

Later in the meeting, the council voted unanimously to appoint Mr. Cherry's widow, Geraldine, to fill the remainder of his term on the council.

Council member Isabell made the motion saying it was Dean's wishes that his wife fill his spot.

Voters will have the opportunity to decide if the Manila Council positions will be extended from two year to four year positions. The Council unanimously passed an ordinance to get the process started. Attorney Wagner said he would get the ordinance to the election commission to get the proposal on the general election ballot.

Manila Chief of Police Jackie Hill addressed the council requesting approval for Jared Camp as part-time officer.

Camp is fully certified. The council voted unanimously to hire Camp as part-time officer.

Mayor Veach said the city had not had as good a year as last financially but made the recommendation to give the same amount of year end bonuses. He recommended $800 for all full time employees, $1,000 for department heads, and the same percentage as last year for part-time employees. The motion was made and passed unanimously to give the same amount of bonus as last year.

Mayor Veach gave the council an estimate of $6,450 on completing the installation of the three additional storm sirens. The three will tie in with the one the city has. The city purchased the sirens from the city of Jonesboro. Veach said all in all the sirens have been reasonably priced and will work.

The council voted on the expenditure to get the sirens working.

In other business:

*Mayor Veach said the council had approved the work on a public works building at the last meeting and there may be some grant funds available to help with the project.

*Mayor Veach announced the Christmas parade will be held Dec. 5. He said he had over 10 floats committed and two bands.

"We are on track with the Christmas parade," he said.

*Mayor Veach said he is still waiting to hear from a GIF Grant to help with the heating and air conditioning at the Airport Center. He said GIF has two cycles a year and the city will be able to apply again for a grant in a few months.

*Mayor Veach said everyone was in order for the upcoming Manila Homecoming Music Show on Saturday. He said he was looking forward to the Saturday night and Sunday afternoon show.

*Mayor Veach reviewed the financial report with the city 83 percent through the year.

*Councilman Larry "Whiz" Davis updated the council on the Airport projects underway. He said work would begin next week on each side of the runway with the asphalt work starting after the first of the year. He said they are still waiting for the roof on the large hangar and the fuel system.

*Mayor Veach gave each council members a copy of the proposed 2010 operating budget as well as copies of the Water and Sewer Audit from last year. He said he had an exit conference with the auditor and everything was fine.

*The council had no objections to Mayor Veach contacting Little and Associates Architects of Jonesboro to handle projects such as the utility building.

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