The City Council of Forrest City, Arkansas, met in regular session on February 3, 2015. Mayor Bryant called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Alderman Twillie offered prayer after which the Pledge Allegiance was recited. The following answered roll call: Mayor Bryant, Clerk Cochran, Attorney Cline, and City Council members: Hollowell, Echols, Breeding, Fields, Capps, Twillie, and Oswalt. Alderman Williams was absent.
Alderman Oswalt made a motion to approve the minutes from the January 20, 2015 regular meeting. Motion second by Alderman Echols. Roll Call: All Ayes.
REPORT OF COMMITTEES
Alderman Oswalt said a personnel committee meeting was held last week to discuss a water department employee who retired due to health. The city council voted not to pay the incentive due to the fact that the employee did not meet the policy guidelines. The committee recommended, due to extenuating circumstance, to pay Kenney Douglas $100.00 per year for time worked in the department, in accordance with the Forrest City Water Utility policy. Motion was made by Alderman Oswalt. Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: Ayes.
DEPARTMENT HEADS REPORTS
Fire Chief Johnny Ruffin said the fire department is in good shape, equipment wise. The department currently has four pumpers and two ladder trucks along with one brush unit and several support vehicles. We are waiting for the weather to break to begin dirt work on fire station number two.
Alderman Twillie asked if the department needed any items to be included in this year's budget.
Chief Ruffin said there is nothing urgent needed. All equipment is up and running, except for ladder truck one, the older unit. It is in Memphis being repaired; a hydraulic unit is being put in the lift.
Alderman Capps asked for an update on the North Washington Street fire and the remaining debris.
Chief Ruffin said that property is owned by a private individual. He did speak with her after the fire and she is waiting on the insurance company to finish the inspection. The insurance company did request that a private investigator come out; nothing will be moved until the investigation is done.
Mayor Bryant said he had spoken with Margie Adams and she is ready to tear it down as soon as possible.
Mr. Murdock said he did not have a formal report because of such a short notice, but he does plan to present a report at the next council meeting. He did say operations at the department are going well at this point; there are no crises that aren't manageable. Mayor Bryant commented that pump #2 went out and a new pump has been ordered.
Director Kenneth Taylor said they have already started to prepare the Southside Swimming Pool for the summer; as of now there is no winter damage. The pumps and all equipment are up and running and the walls and floors have been painted. He said he recently met with some people from the Arkansas Tennis Association about the courts at the Stuart Springs Park. They plan to come back next week and put together a town hall meeting and talk to the group about resurfacing the court at Stuart Springs and putting new lights on the court at the Civic Center.
He said there are several pieces of equipment needed at the Larry S. Bryant Multipurpose Center.
Some of the equipment at the center has been there eight years. The rails on the treadmills have been turned several times and they can't be turned anymore.
February 3, 2015 Minutes cont.
Mr. Taylor also said he is seeking specifications for work to extend water lines and electricity to the pavilions at the sports complex.
Mayor Bryant thanked Mr. Taylor and his staff for the job they do at the sports complex, and especially with the senior citizen program and also the gardening program they have started.
Pest Control Department
Pest Control Director JC Rice said the equipment used for spraying, chain saws, tractors and bush hogs are in good condition. Mayor Bryant commented that they have already sprayed the intersection I-40 Cloverleaf early this year; rather than later.
Police Chief Reynolds was absent.
Alderman Oswalt asked Mayor Bryant to please notify the code enforcement officer that she is a department head; he would have like to have seen her tonight to address the council.
An Ordinance Waving the Requirement of Competitive Bidding
Attorney Cline said this is the formality from the vote at the last meeting to purchase the old Ridout Lumber building. Attorney Cline read An Ordinance Waving the Requirement of Competitive Bidding; Declaring An Exceptional Circumstance; Authorizing Expenditure Of Seventy-Five Thousand Dollars For Purchase Of Real Property And Declaring An Emergency sponsored by Alderman Twillie.
Alderman Twillie made a motion to suspend the rules and read the ordinance for the second reading. Second by Alderman Fields. Roll Call: Hollowell, Echols, Capps, Fields, Twillie All Ayes. Alderman Breeding and Oswalt Voted No. Motion did not pass.
Attorney Cline read a Resolution To Amend The City Of Forrest's Personnel Policy Manual And For Other Purposes Sick Leave Is hereby Deleted Alderman Oswalt made a motion to adopt the resolution. Second by Alderman Twillie.
Alderman Oswalt said several years ago, the council voted to give non uniform employees the same amount of sick time as uniform employees which is 20-days. Part of the policy was changed and this is just a clean-up of the policy. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Attorney Cline read a Resolution To Amend The City Of Forrest's Personnel Policy Manual, And For Other Purposes Sick Leave paid Alderman Oswalt made a motion to adopt the resolution. Second Alderman Twillie.
Alderman Oswalt said the purpose of this resolution is so that non uniform employees can receive the same benefits of uniform employees. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Attorney Cline read a Resolution To Amend The City Of Forrest's Personnel Policy Manual And For Other Purposes Bereavement Leave Alderman Oswalt made a motion to adopt the resolution. Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Attorney Cline read a Resolution To Amend The City Of Forrest's Personnel Policy Manual And For Other Purposes At The Beginning of the 4th Quarter Of The Fiscal Year, The Budget Committee Will Meet With Each Department Head. Alderman Oswalt made a motion to adopt the resolution. Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes.
February 3, 2015 Minutes cont.
Attorney Cline asked if there were anyone present in the audience with their name on the resolution to speak on the matter of their property. There were none.
Attorney Cline read A Resolution Certifying The Amount Of A Clean-Up Lien To Be Filed With The St. Francis County Tax Collector Against Certain Real Property In The City Of Forrest City, Arkansas, And Other Purposes. Alderman Oswalt made a motion to adopt the resolution. Second by Alderman Capps.
Alderman Oswalt asked if that was the second lien put on property #16-New G Properties. Mayor Bryant said yes. Roll Call: All Ayes.
GENERAL FUND BILLS
Alderman Hollowell made a motion to approve and pay the General Fund bills totaling $23,431.65. Second by Alderman Breeding. Roll Call: All Ayes.
STREET FUND BILLS
Alderman Oswalt made a motion to approve and pay Street Fund bills in the amount of $1,249.84 Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes.
SOLID WASTE FUND BILLS
Alderman Oswalt made a motion to approve and pay Solid Waste Fund bills in the amount of $19,196.35. Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Alderman Hollowell said on the resolution that was just passed, states that bereavement leave must be taken two weeks after notification of death and/or funeral. He asked if the resolution should read within two weeks. Attorney Cline said the issue should have been brought up before the resolution was passed.
Alderman Oswalt said the committee would clean-up the resolution.
Mayor Bryant presented Jimmy King with a plaque that read, in appreciation for 21-years of dedicated service for the Forrest City Water Commission, City of Forrest City, Arkansas granted January 6, 2015.
Alderman Twillie asked for a joint Budget and Personnel Committee meeting to start looking at job description and budget. The meeting was scheduled for Monday, February 9, 2015 at 5:30 p.m.
Alderman Twillie said Code Enforcement Mutasid has come in, do the council want to hear her report at this time. Alderman Oswalt said the council voted to follow the agenda.
Alderman Twillie made a motion to adjourn at 6:40 p.m. Second by Alderman Capps.