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Hope City Board

By Staff, 10/20/20 8:22 PM

The Hope City Board met Tuesday for their second October meeting. Following the invocation, pledge, and review of minutes, the board got into their first action item.

The board considered a request from the Hope Lions Club. The club has made a request to rent the Coliseum for the Lions Club Auction from December 3rd, 4th, and 5th. The Lions are required to submit a plan to the Arkansas Department of Health. They have and their plan for the auction has been approved. The Lions are eligible to rent the coliseum for the non-profit amount of $100 per day. Lions 2nd Vice-President Dr. Charles Looney noted the club is approved for up to 310 people at once inside the coliseum. Dr. Looney also noted Josie Carlton will be checking those attending and taking temperatures. He also noted how the bathrooms will be disinfected and the Lions also have a plan to disinfect the feet of those attending. Dr. Looney noted the club raised $35,000 last year and this money stays in the community. The board voted to approve the rental of the Coliseum to the Lions.

The board looked at a proposed ordinance for the city purchasing policy. The proposed ordinance would allow the policy to be covered under one ordinance. The ordinance dictates purchases not exceeding $2,500 would be covered by the approval of a department head. Purchases above $2,500 but not exceeding $10,000 would require 3 verbal quotes from potential vendors and a written purchase order approved by the city manager. Purchases exceeding $10,000 but not exceeding $20,00 require 3 written quotes from potential vendors and a written purchase order approved by the City Manager. The ordinance also covers items exceeding $20,000 and improvements or major repairs in excess of $35,000. The ordinance was approved and will go into effect in January.

The board looked at bids on some drainage issues on Texas Street. The amount budgeted was $43,560. Spears Engineering has designed the project. One bid was received for $31,045 from TWOBO dba Bobo and Bain. The bid was accepted.

The board looked at an ordinance concerning rezoning. This was to replace a current manufactured home at 407 E. Oak. The property is currently zoned C-2.. There are seven non-conforming manufactured homes within the area. The board approved the ordinance authorizing rezoning the property from C-2 to R-5.

The board considered a resolution in support of Issue 1 which will be on the November 3rd ballot. Issue 1 would amend the state constitution to make permanent a half-cent sales tax authorized by Issue 1 of 2012. The sales tax currently produces about $235,000 for city streets and $488,000 for county roads. The board approved the resolution of support.

City Manager Catherine Cook told the board city finance officer Debbie Hall has been named State Finance Officer of the Year. Cook said she was very proud of Hall and it shows what a great job Hall has has done for the city for nearly 28 years. Hall was on the virtual meeting with the board and she said she was very humbled and honored.

Under the City Manager’s Report, Catherine Cook gave an update on the city tour of facilities next Tuesday at 8:30 and the unveiling of the plaque at the Hub at 11:30am that day. Cook also gave an update on the progress on the City Hall Roof, the final inspection on the landfill, and the street program. She said the paving contractor will be moving in this week. Cook also said they are working on a 2021 budget.

Director Dr. Linda Clark asked about the Rose Hill/Cave Hill Cemetery. Cook said they are getting ready to bid out the work for the next year. She said she thinks the board will need to be prepared to pay more for the service in the next year and also to add a termination clause to the contract. Cook also noted this isn’t a perpetual care cemetery and suggested families consider doing some volunteer work.

Director Kiffenea Talley suggested the board act upon renaming the streets in the Green Acres subdivision before the end of the year. Cook said they had received a normal response from the residents. It has been suggested the streets be renamed as they are all named for Confederate officers.

Board member Mark Ross noted he had calls from citizens protesting the closure of the basketball courts in the parks. Also, he said he’d had complaints concerning the noise from the music at Saddle Tramps. There’s been some timber and brush cleared from between the club and the houses in that area. It is believed the brush had acted as a buffer blocking out some of the music. It was suggested any residents with complaints call the police department. Catherine Cook also addressed the closure of the basketball courts and she noted the Department of Health has guidelines on how such sports as basketball can be allowed. Ross cited some sports that are being allowed and noted he just wants to make sure the city is fair with everyone. Ross suggested providing information on the regulations via the media.

Mayor Steve Montgomery noted Director Mark Ross has been reappointed to the Municipal League Economic Development Advisory Committee. Mayor Montgomery also congratulated the winners from the Virtual Chamber of Commerce Annual meeting the previous evening.

Board member Kiffenea Talley encouraged registered voters to vote and noted early voting is open. Board member Reginald Easter thanked the board on behalf of the Carrigan family . The board had issued an official statement upon the death of a member of that family. The meeting then adjourned.