Duffel welcomed as new Monette councilman
Mayor Chub Qualls administered the oath of office to newly appointed city councilman Philip Duffel at the beginning of Monette City Council meeting Monday night, Oct. 17. Duffel will assume the duties of former Alderman Perry Wood as Sanitation Department Commissioner.
Mayor Qualls reported an 18-inch Fiberglas splashguard has been added at the city sewer plant to meet Arkansas Department Environmental Quality requirements for an extended wall.
Plans are to sell or remove obsolete and unused city equipment and to repair and seal the roof at the city shop in order to eliminate leaking situation before the onset of winter.
Police Chief Brian Carmichael reported on application for a Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) to obtain a new police vehicle.
"Grant or no grant we are going to have to replace one car," Alderman Bob Blankenship said.
"We should know something from the grant by November," Carmichael said. "I had rather wait until we have the check in hand before we purchase the car."
The Monette Christmas Parade is scheduled for Dec. 5, with Kaye Staggs serving as chairman of the event.
Alderman Joyce Read reported the City Beautification Committee had refurbished four hanging Christmas decorations, wreaths, and decorative display items, with plans to turn on the citywide Christmas light display on Thanksgiving night.
"The display will include large street light hanging displays, antique light displays, and additions to our nativity scene," Read said. "We plan to prepare 55 lit wreaths next week for hanging also. Each year we refurbish and repair decorations and add new lights and greenery where needed. I am very proud of our beautification team, as they are dedicated to making the city come alive at Christmas. People passing through town often compliment the city on how nice it looks during the holidays."
The council continued to discuss unkept and unsightly properties within the city, and legal description and location of alleys. Any direct action was tabled until the November meeting.
A tentative city budget will be presented at the November meeting, along with proposed wage description and handbook revision.
The council voted 5-0 to pass Resolution 2011-1 for city millage rates to remain at 1.8 mills for personal property and 1.8 mills for real property. Alderman Blankenship abstained from voting.
Mayor Qualls discussed the potential development of a turning lane in front of Buffalo Island Central West Elementary, to reduce traffic problems during peak hours.
Repair of backstops and fences at the sports park will be completed in order to meet final requirements of construction grant.
The council tabled any action on proposed rental of the Monette Senior Center until American Legion renovation is completed.
The council voted to make a donation in support of the BIC junior and senior high Robotics Team.
Alderman Jason Stewart requested the city look into standing water on the west side of the city park walking track, in case there is a leak.
The next regularly scheduled council meeting will be 7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 21, at city hall.
Mayor Chub Qualls and new alderman Phillip Duffel. (Town Crier photo/Nan Snider)