Council members were in agreement to secure $3.5 million for future city projects, which could include a new public library and swimming pool.
It was still uncertain as to what direction the council would take with possible water and sewer rates.
The city’s five-year plan includes a utility rate increase, but Council President James McGowan said he would like to see a rate study first, so the city is not pulling out a rate increase arbitrarily.
“A rate study is the way to go,” he said.
The city’s general fund has always funded the utility fund, but Councilman Terry Templin said the utility department needs to stand on its own.
“We are going into the hole big-time with the water,” said Councilwoman Dot Wood.
Byron Woods, the city’s contract engineer, said costs to produce water, maintenance and manpower continues to rise.
He said a rate study could take about three months to complete.
“I have heard from about six people, all against a rate increase,” said Councilman Jay Jenkins.
City Manager Patrick Draper said a rate increase is necessary to keep the city from having deficit spending in the utility fund budget.
At Monday’s meeting Mayor Joe Funderburg presented seniors from the Senior Citizen Center with a proclamation proclaiming Monday as Senior Citizen Appreciation Day.
In other matters, the council:
• Approved to apply for a $250,000 Community Development Block Grant for renovations to the 19th Street Community Center in the former armory building. The city’s match for the project is $100,000.
• Rejected all bids for a new roof for Fire Station No. 1 and to bid the project out again.
• Approved to hire a new part-time position for the Senior Center and part-time concession stand workers for the Sports Complex.
• Approved a list of surplus items.
• Approved a bid submitted by Baird Contracting Company, Inc. in the amount of $274,800 to relocate the water line across Wolf Creek, next to U.S. 78 as part of the work for the bridge replacement project.
• Approved resolutions requesting that Veterans Parkway and Hazelwood Drive are reclassified major collector roads so the city can secure federal funds to improve the roads or access to them.
• In a 3-2 vote approved to apply for a grant that could pay for additional fire department personnel for two years. There is no match for the city. Council members Wood and Templin voted against applying for the grant.
• Authorized the city manager to sign a letter of intent for the purchase of the CenturyLink building.
Contact David Atchison at email@example.com