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— Gravette City Council Committee of the Whole Thursday night confronted several topics, some of which will be addressed at the next Council meeting October 22.

Note: Official action cannot be taken at the committee meeting which is held primarily for discussion and informational purposes. Items addressed at the meeting included:

Discussed a contract with Steve Olds to feed and care for kennel animals and clean the kennel.

Heard reports from the fire department, police department and streets and utilities department.

Heard there are three vacancies on the Planning Commission (see story elsewhere in this issue) and that body is moving its meeting to the second Monday of each month.

Heard a recommendation the city pursue condemnation of deteriorating buildings.

Heard that Henry Utecht and Helen Owen are in Wisconsin to pick up the new Lion water fountain for Kindley Memorial Park.

Heard that proposed changes in Ordinance 8-06 (concerning water issues) were not completed but it will be on the agenda for the November committeemeeting.

Heard the Planning Commission recommend pursuing annexation east of the city. Darren Warren will contact residents for voluntary annexation and/or a possible ballot issue.

Following the above meeting the Finance and Administration committee, chaired by Terry King, addressed the following items:

Approved appointment of Ann Honderich to the Office of Human Concern Board of Directors, Mayor Bill Howard to make the appointment.

Heard that Carroll Electric has agreed to pay franchise fees for customers within the city limits.

Heard that Roll-Off Sanitation contends a $1 per customer fee levied by the city is its franchise fee. The city contends that is a billing and collection fee for the city providing those services. The issue has not been resolved.

Voted to temporarily waive building and inspection fees for construction of the new fieldhouse and music room for the school. The committee feels these fees should be collected. Patrick Hall is to be a liaison to discuss the issue with the school.

Heard a recommendation the city enter into a contract with Mailco (aFayetteville firm) to handle billing for water/sewer statements. The bills would be on a letter-size paper mailed in a number 10 envelope with return envelope (not postage paid). The bill would provide space for special messages to customers on the billing sheet. The committee agreed and indicated a vote by the City Council is not required. Mayor Howard was given authority to approve the contract.

It was learned numerous customers want to use debit or credit cards to pay water bills, etc., which the city does not accept at this time. At this time the Bank of Gravett does not handle such payments but the bank will be given the opportunity to accept such payments; otherwise the general fund will need to be moved to Arvest Bank, the committee noted. This item will be on the October 22 Council meeting agenda.

A rough draft of the proposed 2010 budget was presented by Mayor Howard. Alderman Hall posed questions concerning the budget. A special meeting date will be set to discuss the proposed budget.

The committee discussed the two year state audit reports with notation the various departments will resolve any issues.

News, Pages 10 on 10/14/2009

Print Headline: City Council Committee Tackles Many Issues

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