Manila Council approves variance request
The regular Manila City Council meeting scheduled for Monday, Oct. 20, was postponed until Tuesday, Oct. 21, due to a lack of a quorum with three council members unable to attend.
Several members of the fire department and police department were present on Monday night in recognition of an award to be given to Officer Drew Byford. Rep. Wes Wagner presented Byford, a Manila police officer and firefighter, with a state citation for going above and beyond the call of duty. Byford pulled a trapped victim from a burning vehicle on Sept. 25.
Business owner Adam Stallings addressed the Manila City Council on Tuesday requesting a variance for a building he has started on his property located on Highway 18 bypass.
"I didn't realize I needed a building permit," Stallings said. "I thought it would be classified as a portable building."
Stallings had a letter from his neighbor with no objections to the shop being close to the property line. He said he has not installed the plumbing as he stopped work when he found out there could be a problem. He said it will not be easy to move but it could be possible if necessary.
Council member Tony Hawkins said he didn't see any problems with leaving the building since there is no objection from the neighbor. Councilman Jason Baltimore said the building is not close to any house and it is back off the property.
Hawkins made a motion, based on the written agreement from the neighbor and the fact that the building is more than 15 feet from any other structure, to allow the variance.
Council voted unanimously to allow the variance. Council members present included Linda Donovan, Donnie Wagner, Jason Baltimore, Dale Murphy and Tony Hawkins.
"You are a young man and we look forward to you doing a lot of business in Manila," Mayor Wagner said. "We are in support of businesses."
Citizens need to come to city hall or contact the code enforcement officer with plans for any building project planned.
Jackie Hill addressed the council about creating a camper park on his property on west Lake Street. He presented a layout with 200 feet for six camping trailer spaces. The new area is next to the existing camper park owned by Mr. Dobbins. Hill said he will put in new sewer lines on the property if the park is approved or not because the lines need replacing.
Council members discussed the project which will be for a camping/trailer park only. Council did not express any objections to the project and agreed to take a vote at the next meeting.
Several resolutions were passed in conjunction with the grant application process for a new senior center building. One resolution was to allow Mayor Wagner to submit a grant application.
"We have taken the first steps for a new center for our senior citizens," Mayor Wagner said.
The city will apply for a grant through the East Arkansas Planning and Development Agency. Mayor Wagner said he will also be looking into any additional funding available through the Delta Regional Authority.