MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING
FORREST CITY CITY COUNCIL
FORREST CITY, ARKANSAS
August 2, 2016
The City Council of Forrest City, Arkansas met in regular session on August 2, 2016. Mayor Bryant called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Alderman Williams offered prayer after which the Pledge of Allegiance was recited. The following answered roll call: Mayor Bryant, Clerk Cochran, Attorney Cline, and City Council members: Williams, Echols, Hollowell, Breeding Twillie, Fields, Capps, and Oswalt.
Alderman Oswalt made a motion to approve the minutes of the Special Called meeting of July 12, 2016. Motion second by Alderman Williams. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Alderman Fields made a motion to approve the minutes of the July 19, 2016 regular meeting. Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Mayor Bryant requested to amend the agenda under new business to rescind the eight percent administrative fees for the Forrest City Library, Street, and Solid Waste funds. He also added to amend under unfinished business, the budget committee information. Motion by Alderman Oswalt to accept the agenda amendments. Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes.
REPORT OF COMMITTEES
DEPARTMENT HEADS REPORTS
Teresa Campbell was present with concerns about her neighborhood and her property. She stated that her husband and family owns the property located at 816 North Izard. She stated that they moved from the property about three years ago due to her job. She said she has been having problems about ten years with the condition of the surrounding properties. She said Jeffrey and Susie Roberts owns the property at 824 N. Izard; they changed it from a house to a duplex. The property is vacant it is not livable, the windows and doors are broken, stray animals and kids are going in and out, a tree fell on the roof then to the ground and electrical lines are lying in the driveway. She also stated that vegetation is growing in the street and mud is accumulating and affecting the storm drain on the corner.
She also mentioned the property across the street located at 905, 909, and 913 N. Izard, the lots have overgrown; also garbage along with an old couch has been sitting on the curb for months.
Mrs. Campbell stated she has tried to sell her property, when potential buyers would approach her house, after seeing the condition of the duplex next door and the property across the street, the buyers were not interested; the realtor has moved her sign. Ms. Campbell said she has tried to rent the house and she has had no luck. She stated she received a cancellation on her homeowners’ insurance because her home has been vacant for more three years.
Mrs. Campbell said she has tried to go through proper channels; she has contacted the council persons in her Ward, they assured her that they would get something done. She contacted the mayor’s office; she never received a call back. She has contacted the code inspector by Email, phone, and in person. Ms. Campbell said the last contact she had with the code inspector, she was advised by her that she went out and inspected the property and said she did not see any code violations. Ms. Campbell stated after a little discussion, code enforcement officer hung-up on her.
Ms. Campbell also presented pictures so the council could see the conditions of the property next door. She stated she was making a plea to city council and she then asked if they would live next to property in that condition.
Alderman Capps stated Ms. Campbell did contact him a few years ago and the city has pick up a lot of trash since then. He then asked Mayor Bryant to check with code enforcement and find out why this property has been neglected and also to expedite condemnation.
Mayor Bryant stated he has notes on the matter, he then asked Ms. Campbell if she knew the date she was hung-up on. Ms. Campbell stated it has been a little while ago.
Alderman Breeding asked Ms. Campbell if she still had copies of the E-mails that were sent.
Ms. Campbell said she did not know, but she would check to see.
Alderman Oswalt stated if the E-mails were sent to city hall, they still should be in the system.
Mayor Bryant asked Ms. Campbell if should could give him a time-frame for the E-mails, he would get with Glynis. He then stated he would check with J.C. Rice to see why the city has not cut and cleaned up the property.
2016 Budget Committee
Alderman Echols stated that the budget committee has a recommendation to the city council in regards to approving the solid waste and street department amending the 20l6 budget that was pasted based upon a reflection of 2015 budget: solid waste budget $2,759,834 and street fund $1,266,145.
Alderman Echols made a motion to approve the recommendation of the budget committee. Alderman Fields second the motion. Attorney Cline stated the council needs to do a follow-up by an official resolution. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Rescind Eight percent Administrative Fees
Alderman Breeding stated in the past the council set an administrative fee of eight percent on the solid waste, street, and library funds. He stated after some discussion he and Alderman Echols had with the Arkansas Municipal League staff, the decision was made to rescind the motion. Alderman Breeding made a motion to rescind the eight percent fees at this time until the administrative fees could be handle in a different manner. Seconded by Alderman Hollowell. Roll Call: All Ayes.
GENERAL FUND BILLS
Alderman Breeding made a motion to approve and pay the General Fund bills in the amount of $21,605.95. Motion second by Alderman Williams. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Alderman Oswalt made a motion to approve and pay the Street Fund bills in the amount of $7,091.33. Motion was second by Alderman Fields. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Alderman Echols made a motion to approve and pay the Solid Waste Fund bills in the amount of $4,130.77. Motion was second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Alderman Echols made a motion to approve and pay Water Utility bills in the amount of $10,936.28. Motion was second by Alderman Fields. Alderman Capps stated he asked for an explanation on a bill from TW Electric LLC; after an explanation from Mr. Murdock. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Alderman Echols made a motion to adjourn at 6:20 p.m. second by Alderman Fields.
Larry Bryant, Mayor
Derene Cochran, City Clerk-Treasurer