Caraway Council fills administrative assistant/water secretary position

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Mayor Barry Riley read a resignation letter submitted by Marcia Stevens, administrative assistant/water secretary, at the Feb. 11 Caraway City Council meeting. Following the acceptance of Stevens' resignation the board went into executive session to discuss the hiring and salary for a replacement.

All council members were present.

The Council voted to hire Christy Tipton to fill the position of administrative assistant/water secretary.

Mayor Riley introduced Ordinance 2016-3. The ordinance allows relatives of elected city officials and employees to hold employment with the City of Caraway. The Council approved the suspension of rules for readings of the ordinance and Mayor Riley read all three consecutively due to time constraints.

James Howell took the floor in request that the Council look into the possibility of traffic control near Dollar General. Howell sited his concerns for the safety of foot traffic in the area. The Council agreed to look into options.

Howell also asked that the Council and residents review the clean up ordinance and asked about enforcement of the trash can ordinance and receptacles left out after garbage pick up. Mayor Barry Riley informed Howell that no tickets have been written because residences follow the rule allowing 24 hour retrieval of trash cans after citations are issued.

The Council discussed three backhoes for sale. One bid was for a C580 at $87,000. The second was a C590 for $97,000. The third submission was a new Caterpillar for $102,435. Caterpillar also offered a used 2013 backhoe with 1223 hours of time used. Bo James, alderman, and Mayor Riley shared the details of the used Caterpillar.

The final decision was made by the Council to purchase the 2013 Caterpillar for $76,000 with a two year, 1,000 hour warranty. The initial down payment will be $28,000. The remaining $48,000 will be paid annually over five years. The payment will be split equally from the General, Street and Water and Sewer Departments. The annual payments will be $10,890 beginning in January 2017.

The Council accepted letters of resignations from the City Park Commission by Brittany Brandon and Hunter Brandon. The Council then accepted the addition of Billy Pendigrass to the Park Commission.

Resolution 2016-1 was accepted by the Council. The resolution states that the city of Caraway will receive 95 percent of funds collected from traffic stops made by state troopers within Caraway city limits. The remaining five percent will go to Craighead County for handling of tickets and fees.

The Council also discussed details of a benefit dinner for Bailey Kelems. The dinner will be held at the Caraway Community Center from 4-6 p.m. Saturday Feb. 20. The event will include a $15 pork plate, live music and silent auction. The Council invited residents to join them in support of the Kelems family.

The City will be setting up a roadblock Friday, Feb. 19, for donations to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The Make-A-Wish Foundation helps to fund and grant wishes made by terminally ill children. All proceeds will go to a wish from a child living in the city of Caraway. The goal to grant the wish is $8,000. Donations will be accepted at the roadblock at the intersection of Highway 135 and Highway 158 in front of the Dollar General. Those who donate $25 or more will receive a free tee shirt while supplies last.

Alderman James shared there will also be a first ever Bus-Stop Roadblock that will get children involved in the charity. School buses will be stopped and boarded to accept donations directly from students who may wish to participate. Notes will be sent home with children with further information.

An update for the community garden was given by Alderman Roger Williams. Williams said the garden is expected to be ready this year.

Mayor Riley shared a firetruck will be ready in two weeks.

The city will be enforcing an abandoned property ordinance. Mayor Riley said letters will be sent to property owners near the end of March.

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