Leachville City Council amends budget

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Leachville City Council adopted resolution 2016-2 for the amendment of the 2015 budget at the March 21 council meeting. The amendments made to the budget were for the adjustment of the revenues and expenditures of the general, street, water, Melody Theater and fire protection funds.

City Clerk Ruth Ann Keith said the tornado grant funds from the United States Department of Agriculture should be available Friday, March 25. The GIF grant will be available once a copy of the returned check from American Signal is obtained and submitted.

Keith also passed packets of information to the Council concerning the FUN park grant through the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism. She plans to move forward with the grant application and invited council members who wished to take part in the application to do so.

Robert Ballard, utility superintendent, gave an update for water and sewer departments. A commercial mower is needed for cemetery upkeep. Ballard asked if the Council would prefer to trade or bid out mowers currently owned by the city toward the purchase of a more suitable mower.

Ballard will be testing mowers on March 31 to find which will best work for the needs of the city and will get more information on possible trade-in values.

Ballard also presented an estimate of $1,750 parts and labor necessary to repair brakes for the city dump truck.

The new tornado siren has been tested and could be heard in the center of Leachville. The siren will be run every third Friday of the month at noon.

The Council scheduled a special meeting at city hall at 5 p.m. Thursday, March 24, to continue work on the city employee handbook.

During his report for the Police Department, Officer Mike Shively requested he be allowed to drive his unit home while he continues the search for a residence in the area. The Council agreed that the decision would improve his response time and approved Shively's request.

The Council tabled discussion and decision until the Thursday meeting on a final offer from Blake Bristo with Blue Streak Canine concerning the city's canine, Reno.

Following the leave of department canine handler, Alan Lasater, Reno has been boarded at Blue Streak Canine in Jonesboro. A letter stated current boarding fees since Feb. 3 will have reached approximately $1,000 by Friday, March 25, and offered two options for the canine.

One option was purchase of the dog for $3,500 along with waiving boarding fees. The second was an even trade of Reno for a narcotics canine. The trade will include waiving of boarding fees and training an officer for handling. Shively said the singular purpose dog may better suit the needs of the department and offered to attend training as well as house the canine should they choose to trade.

Shively also requested the purchase of a safe large enough to hold rifles, shotguns, tasers and other equipment. The Council asked that price comparisons, specifications and photos be presented during the special meeting on March 24.

The Council denied a request made by Alan Lasater to borrow or purchase a vest fitted for him from the Leachville City Police Department.

The next regular Leachville City Council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday, April 18.

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