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Hope City Board

By Staff, 10/17/17 8:53 PM

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HOPE- The Hope City Board met Tuesday October 17th. Tashia Martin of the Hope Rockers spoke and answered questions for the board. Martin noted the group is in the off-season now. Martin said the group is non-profit and the paperwork for the non-profit status is being prepared. Currently the group has about 30 members and can have more than 50 members. Martin says the group gets more active about February as many of the members cheer at football and basketball games. In answer to a board question, Martin says the financial proceeds go to such things as travel expenses and uniforms. She also said she serves girls aged 5 to 17. There was a question about Martin using the North Side Community Center more than one or two days per week. Martin said the “ladies at Fair Park” gave her permission and keys to the North Side Community Center. Charles Primus said he was not aware the troupe had been using the community center more than she had permission for. Also, it was requested if she doesn’t need the North Side Center until February she would need to turn in her keys until after the first of the year. Also, there was a question about a routine in which the older girls dance on tables. This was a question of safety and liability. Mayor Steve Montgomery noted he was impressed after seeing dance routines of the group on Martin’s Facebook page. Another board member questioned what had happened to the oversight of Charles Primus and Dr. LaDell Douglas. Martin said she didn’t know what caused Dr. Douglas and Primus to cease involvement. Primus said he and Dr. Douglas would not sponsor the group again because he had heard of girls dancing on tables, he had seen a child sitting in the window,and Primus also said Martin’s little boy had “run wild”. Martin and Primus both made comments and indicated a problem between them. Mayor Montgomery said he would support the group using the building up to two nights a week in the future but asked if she could get more supervision and sponsors. Martin said she could do that and would come back to the board with sponsors. The board agreed to let her use the building in February if she’ll agree to come back and report to the board.
The board looked at an ordinance to raise the city’s general millage from 4.2 mills to 5 mills. The board initially voted to raise the millage from 2.2 to 3.2 in 2016, up to 4.2 in 2017, and indicated their intentions to consider going to 5 for 2018. Prior to the 2016 action, the millage had not been raised in 30 years. City Attorney Joe Short read the ordinance. The ordinance passed 5 to 1.
The board approved an ordinance approving a continuation of the 1 mill firemen’s pension property tax for the coming year. The ordinance passed unanimously.
The board looked at finance options for 6th Street. The board is looking at reconstruction of 6th from the railroad tracks to Spring Hill Road. This would include additional storm drainage and a bike lane. City Manager Catherine Cook noted options include borrowing from city reserves or a bond issue. The project would continue into 2019. Cook suggested using $200,00 from street reserves, using half of the street construction fund in 2018 and 2019, and borrowing $400,000 from general fund reserves. The city is also hopes to get $400,000 from the city state aid Street committee. John Akin asked if the city state aid Street committee funds would be a grant and it was indicated that it would be. It was suggested that possibly some of the money be borrowed from the airport fund (which now has $200,000). The board voted to go with the city manager’s proposal on the project.
Under the city manager’s report, Catherine Cook said the city grant request for the downtown pavilion had gone past the first hurdle and the city will make a further presentation soon. A decision is expected in December. Cook also noted the city landfill project is nearly finished.
City Attorney Joe Short noted Al Fink had countered the city’s offer of clearing the lien on his property at Hazel and Division for $22,000. Fink had proposed $19,000. The board voted to accept the offer.
Board member Kiffenea Tallry asked that residents please take down their yard salsigns in a timely manner. Board member Mark Ross noted the Chicken Express project is coming along well. Chief J.R. Wilson noted the Department of Comminity Correction has been scheduled to clean out the city planter at Third and Division. The meeting then adjourned.

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