The City Council of Forrest City, Arkansas, met in regular session on March 17, 2015. 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, Twillie, Fields, Capps, and Oswalt. Alderman Breeding was absent.
Alderman Hollowell made a motion to approve the minutes of March 3, 2015 regular meeting. Motion second by Alderman Williams. Alderman Capps stated he had an addition he wanted to add to the minutes under code enforcement on the burned out structure on Trenton Road. The discussion between him and the code enforcement officer was how the lot would look after the contractor had finished; that all the concrete would be moved and the lot would be leveled. Roll Call: All Ayes.
REPORT OF COMMITTEES
Alderman Oswalt stated that the personnel committee met Thursday night and discussed four policies. He stated three of the policies were in the council's package. The fourth one is the bereavement policy and since it was not put in the package it will be addressed at the next council meeting.
Attorney Cline read A Resolution To Replace The Forrest City Water Utility's Employee Handbook, And For Other Purpose Alderman Oswalt made a motion to adopt the resolution. Second by Alderman Capps.
Alderman Hollowell asked the difference in the policies. Alderman Oswalt stated the difference in the two policies is the sick and vacation time. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Attorney Cline read A Resolution To Amend The City Of Forrest City's Personnel Policy Manual, And For Other Purposes, Departmental Policies And Procedures Alderman Oswalt made a motion to adopt the resolution. Second by Alderman Twillie.
Alderman Hollowell asked the difference in the policies. Alderman Oswalt stated the difference is, the policy use to read to adopt lawful oral or written policies, the word oral was removed and the second paragraph was added. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Attorney Cline read A Resolution To Amend The City Of Forrest City's Personnel Policy Manual, And For Other Purposes, Handbook Updates Alderman Oswalt made a motion to adopt the resolution. Second by Alderman Twillie.
Alderman Hollowell asked what is different about this policy. Alderman Oswalt stated section one, second paragraph is added and the policy is obsolete. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Alderman Twillie stated there is no budget committee report, the meeting was postponed. Alderman Twillie then set a budget committee meeting for Thursday, March 26, 2015 at 5:30 p.m.
DEPARTMENT HEADS REPORTS
There were none.
March 17, 2015 Minutes cont.
Condemnation Bid Opening
Mayor Bryant asked if there were any bids in the audience for property #11 -- 502 Court Street. There was none. Mayor Bryant opened one bid from Perdew Construction for the amount of $19,999.00
Mayor Bryant asked if there were any bids in the audience for property #13 -- 321 W. Elise and 812 N. Rosser. There was none. Mayor Bryant opened one bid from Perdew Construction for property #1-321 W. Elise in the amount of $1,600.00 and property #2-812 N. Rosser in the amount of $4,500.00.
Alderman Oswalt asked if the other property owners, in the area, could be notified when demolition starts, in case of hazardous conditions.
Mayor Bryant stated the third reading of an ordinance waving the requirement of competitive bidding. Alderman Twillie stated he would like to make a motion to table the third reading of the ordinance until he has had a change to tour the building; meanwhile he has received some calls from the citizens concerning the condition of the building. Motion was second by Alderman Echols.
Alderman Fields stated at the last meeting there was some discussion about the plumbing in the building. She stated she contacted some individuals that previously had the building and they stated they did not have a problem with the plumbing. She said she has been in the building and did not see anything wrong with the structure for the purpose that the city is going to use the building; for recycling and storing and keeping equipment out of the weather and keeping people from sabotaging the equipment. She also stated she did not see a reason to keep delaying the ordinance.
Alderman Williams stated he has walked the property but he would like to go in to see other possibilities the property could be used for.
Mayor Bryant stated for clarification; Alderman Williams stated the building could not be used for a solid waste facility. The other discussion was in order to use bond money, the facility has to be used for a recycling plant to recycle plastic, cardboard, and paper.
Roll Call: Alderman Williams, Echols, and Twillie All Ayes.
Alderman Hollowell, Fields, Capps, and Oswalt said No.
Attorney Cline read for the third reading 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 adopt the ordinance. Second by Alderman Echols.
Roll Call: Alderman Williams, Echols, Hollowell, Fields, and Capps All Ayes
Alderman Oswalt said No.
Alderman Twillie made the motion to adopt the emergency clause. Second by Alderman Fields.
Roll Call: Alderman William, Echols, Hollwell, Fields, Capps, and Oswalt. All Ayes.
Attorney Cline stated there is an accompanying resolution because there is a statue that speaks in term of real estate being approved by resolution.
Attorney Cline read A Resolution Authorizing Purchase Of Real Property From MJM East, LLC.
Alderman Twillie made a motion to adopt the resolution. Second by Alderman Echols. Roll Call: All Ayes.
March 17, 2015 Minutes cont.
Attorney Cline asked if there was anyone in the audience who wants to speak on the matter for the property of Henry Malone, Nancy Brinker, Anderson & Murline Byers, Henry Jones, and Haymer Enterprise.
Mayor Bryant read a letter from Paulette Haymer, Administrator for Dr. Xavier Haymer's estate and there was a also a letter from Attorney Sheffield Legal Services asking for a delay in condemnation to allow more time to resolve the matter of settling the estate. Ms. Haymer stated she would continue to maintain the grass during this process.
Alderman Oswalt asked Attorney Cline if the properties in question can be removed by the resolution or will the resolution need to be read and then remove the properties.
Attorney Cline stated he would remove the properties before the resolution is read.
Alderman Oswalt made a motion to remove property 2029 W. Broadway and 822 W. Broadway from the resolution. Second by Alderman Twillie. Alderman Capps asked if there would be a timeline set on the property. Code Enforcement Officer Muqtasid stated the demo permit is good for two months. Alderman Twillie stated to sell the property, he thinks the owners should be given 90 to 100 days. Alderman Capps asked that the resolution be amended to give the owners 120-days to sell or tear down the property.
Attoney Cline asked if the council was talking about rescheduling the resolution for those two properties for 120-days. Mayor Bryant said yes. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Code Enforcement Muqtasid stated that the property owner at 123 E. Elise has purchased a demo permit. Alderman Oswalt made a motion to remove the property from the resolution. Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes
Attorney Cline read A Resolution Providing For The Condemnation And Removal Of Structures; Finding A Public Nuisance; Providing Lien on The Property; And For Other Purposes Alderman Oswalt made the motion to adopt the resolution. Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Attorney Cline asked if there was anyone present for the property on the clean-up lien that was posted in the newspaper. There were none. Alderman Fields stated that Mr. Walker would take care of his property.
Alderman Fields made a motion to remove C.R. Walker property located on Block #7, lot #10, Pettus & Wms Addition from the resolution. Second by Alderman Twillie. Roll Call: All Ayes.
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 Echols. Roll Call: All Ayes.
GENERAL FUND BILLS
Alderman Capps made a motion to approve and pay the General Fund bills in the amount of $48,701.27. Second by Alderman Hollowell. Roll Call: All Ayes.
STREET FUND BILLS
Alderman Oswalt made a motion to approve and pay Street Fund bills in the amount of $10,741.27. Second by Alderman Echols. Roll Call: All Ayes.
March 17, 2015 Minutes cont.
SOLID WASTE FUND BILLS
Alderman Capps made a motion to approve and pay Solid Waste Fund bills in the amount of $27,435.32. Second by Alderman Hollowell. Roll Call: All Ayes.
Alderman Fields announced that the civic center commission met on March 10, 2015. The commission reset the rental fees back to the 2006 fees and they gave the mayor permission to negotiate with the A & P Commission to add two bathrooms and a shower on the back part of the civic center.
Alderman Oswalt asked if the council needs to vote on the rate changes. Mayor Bryant stated the city would need to do an ordinance to reset the rates. Attorney Cline stated the rates were set by an ordinance, another ordinance has to be done to change the rates.
Mayor Bryant said he would try to have the ordinance ready for the next council meeting.
Alderman Capps stated that he had been working on an ordinance for a while. The purpose of the ordinance is to require license and to regulate the operation of coin or token operated amusement games which allows players to win anything of value for their success at operating said (amusement device) and to fix a penalty for violation of this ordinance.
Alderman Capps stated he took the definitions from the state law on amusement devices and added license fees, penalties and fines. He asked the council to look over the ordinance and it could be discussed further.
Alderman Twillie asked if each paragraph of the ordinance is the same as the state law.
Alderman Capps stated he took the description of amusement device from the state law.
State of the City Address
Mayor Bryant gave his State of The City Address. (See attached)
Alderman Twillie made a motion to adjourn at 6:50 p.m.