Mayor Riley given leadership award
The Caraway city council met on Thursday, July 11, and discussed Rodeo Arena improvements, sale of fire truck and need for new police officer.
Roger Bell addressed the Caraway City Council at the July 11 meeting concerning development of the rodeo arena.
"I have spent $5,827.47 on the arena already, with paint, wells, gates and posts, and plans to add lights," Bell said. "I have also invested $9,690 in personal equipment of tractor, mower, cattle guards, harrow and liability signs. We need a concession stand, bathrooms, announcement stand and electrical hook-ups later on. I can give you $2,000 right now in monthly rental, and you can't do anything with it, but I can. I want you to consider letting me use that $2,000 to work on the arena and get it in good shape. The first event will be on Oct. 26."
The council agreed to allow Bell to use the $2,000 monthly rental, for the remainder of his three-year contract, to work on the arena.
"There are no grants at this time available for an outside rodeo arena," Mayor Barry Riley said. "The arena is looking good. We still need to have a work day to get the bleachers set up."
"We have a 1986 Ford fire truck and it is shot," Fire Chief Scotty Browning said. "We could sell it for scrap for $2,800, or advertise for sale. We need a small brush truck to use to maintain our ISO rating of five, and to hold water and pump. We average about $10,000 a year in FEMA money, plus some companies will finance sales."
"We need a committee to work on this," Mitchell Tipton said.
"Are we members of the Firefighter's Association now?" James said.
"No," Browning said. "We paid our dues in 2012 but not in 2013. I will handle application and send the check in January of 2014."
"Somehow the application got shuffled and did not make it to the office for payment," Riley said.
The council agreed to advertise the 1986 truck for sale with a minimum bid of $4,500 accepted.
Councilman Mitchell Tipton reported the false ceiling at the Senior Center is damaged and needs to be repaired.
Police Chief Pete Hicks reported that he and officer Kevin Tucker had been working 84 hours a week with help from auxiliary police. The department continues to look for an officer for the vacant position.
The council reviewed the June 13 meeting and financial report.
Alderman Bo James inquired as to Municipal League expenses for $891.
"Were these expenses paid for with the city's credit card?" James asked.
"Yes," the mayor replied.
James asked if there was a printout submitted from the credit card statement, and Mayor Riley said there was. James asked to see it.
Riley contacted his Administrative Assistant Marsha Stevens. She secured the document from her office at city hall and delivered it to James at the council meeting. The statement involved charges for the winter conference and rural service conference. No further comment was made concerning the statement.
James also asked why Alderman Marvin was not paid last month, even though he was absent from the council meeting.
"Did you pay Rick (Stevens) last month?" James asked. "It is not fair that Marvin was not paid also. As long as we are in office you can't decrease our pay."
James provided a copy of "Guidebook for Municipal Officials of Mayor/Council Cities," which stated, "Salaries of officials may be increased during the term, but not decreased during the term of office unless requested by that official."
Mayor Riley agreed to correct the error.
The council discussed purchasing the property beside the city shop belonging to Merrit Emery but no decision was made.
Greg Douglas and Danny Dunigan were in attendance and each addressed the council announcing their candidacy for the Riverside school board at-large position.
Mayor Riley displayed the Four Star Municipality Award presented to the city at the 79th Arkansas Municipal League Convention in Hot Springs last month. The award is presented annually to municipalities that have demonstrated excellence in loss control in employee safety, wellness, vehicle safety, and prevention of legal liability.
Mayor Riley was also awarded the Adrian L. White Municipal Leadership Award at the June meeting, which is presented to municipal officials who have served with distinction and dedication to their cities and the League's boards, councils, or committees for six years.