City to sweep Main Ave. on FridaysBy PAT BROWN,
The City of Magee is asking drivers who normally park on Main Avenue on Friday mornings to avoid doing so.
The city plans to begin having that street swept weekly at 6 a.m. on Friday. Mayor Dale Berry reported that MDOT is not mowing the right of way on Highway 49, and that Magee and Mendenhall are having to maintain those areas themselves.
The maintenance of grass and upkeep of Highway 49 continues to be an issue as it was last year. Routes like Interstate 55 have already been cut this year.
On similar issues, Mayor Berry noted that the reason old furniture is piling up at apartment complexes is because those properties are not paying for garbage pickup.
Berry reported that the city will also be flushing fire hydrants, which he said sometimes causes discoloration of the water. He suggests if residents see this, that they flush water through the lines with an outside hydrant.
The board approved a $1.3 million contract with Barge Design Solutions for work at the local airport. The Federal Aviation Administration will fund the project at 90 percent and the city is applying for funding from the state for 9 percent. If they are approved the work will cost the city 1 percent or approximately $10,000. The improvements include the ability for pilots to key the microphones in their planes to activate the lighting system at night and leveling of the runway to provide a line of sight from both ends of the runway. Currently a hump in the runway obscures the pilots’ line of sight.
The mayor asked the board to approve a cost overun and to make a budget amendment for paving near the entrance of the sportsplex. According to Berry the intergrity of the road had been undermined by the truck traffic created by the Tyson facility. He said the engineer and the contractor said if the needed repair was not done they would lose the road. Rebuilding the shoulders of the road cost the city an additional $9,200. Berry said he contacted Tyson, abut they were unable to help with the cost. Berry told the board that he felt that it was a problem that needed to be corrected. The board discussed the matter and seemed to support Berry. However, the budget would not be amended until the next meeting of the board.
The remainder of the paving for this year has been completed and came in within budget.
Following a conversation between Magee Police Chief Randy Crawford and Berry there is now discussion about adopting a firearms ordinance in the city. Currently there is nothing on the books. Crawford was asked what would happen if someone discharged a firearm in the city and he told the mayor nothing. This prompted looking at ordinances in Pearl and Brandon. The issue of firearms discharge doesn’t occur with much regularity. The only recourse now is a charge of disturbing the piece. The board agreed to have attorney Bruce Smith review options and make a suggestion to the board.
There was discussion about repairs that are needed to the ambulance station housed by AMR. Mayor Berry reported that the city is getting a lot of request for items the city feels like AMR should be responsible for since the city is not collecting rent on the building which belongs to the city. The most recent request is for a water heater. The city recently spent a lot of money on plumbing issues. It was suggested that AMR should sign a lease agreement and the city would be responsible for structural issues and AMR would be responsible for other type issues.
Berry updated the board on the America In Bloom grant it was suggested that some of the proceeds could funds parttime positions for maintance help and it was suggested that a barrier of trees be planted at the city cemetary.