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City Council Votes To Assist Douglas County Extension

The City of Ava will help fund the University of Missouri Douglas County Extension Office this year. That was the decision of the Ava City Council Tuesday night.

Acting in response to a request from Angie Fletcher, County Program Director for Douglas County Extension, the aldermen agreed to match the $10,000 that Extension receives from Douglas County.

The vote to help fund the office was made with a stipulation that the funding agreement is for this year only, with future funding to be considered on an annual basis.

Mrs. Fletcher also invited the city to appoint a representative to serve on the Extension Council.

Administrative Director Peggy Porter provided the Board of Aldermen with a monthly financial summary report, as suggested in the last city audit.

The report included what is budgeted for each department, what has been expended or received during the current month, a year-to-date report, percentage of budget received or expended, and the dollar amount in the budget to be spent or received.

The city’s fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30, and the city has collected and spent, generally, between 45 and 50 percent of what was anticipated according to the current budget.

Porter also gave a report on the electrical upgrade project that is currently under way in the city.

An engineer with BHMG said about 45 percent of the poles have been set and 35 percent of the conductors pulled in. The contractor, KIOWA, has set poles from the south end of the project north all the way to and along SE 5th Ave., and workers have pulled conductors from the south end of the project all the way north to Ruby Gardens restaurant on South Jefferson.

The contractors were pulled off the project for storm duty for 16 days and missed one day for inclement weather. The company has around 60 days of the 210 calendar-day contract period remaining to complete the job, he said.

Journagan Construction Company is accepting responsibility for a bad paving job done for the city last fall. Street Superintendent Randy Hawkins said Journagan admitted the company had problems with the asphalt used here and will correct their problem

Several streets were paved in the northeast part of town, with a section of NE 8th Avenue being of most concern.

Janice Lorrain reported briefly on the skatepark project, the new water well, the sidewalk project and the city’s comprehensive plan. These are all ongoing projects with no new developments.

Alderman Burrely Loftin reported that he has been in contact with David Martin, son of the late Bill Martin, in regard to a new sign for the Bill Martin Memorial Airport. Loftin said he expects to have a sign design to present to the council this spring.

Alderman Billy Long, who also serves as Ava/Douglas County EMA director, said the local emergency response team met this week with Terry Toler, from SEMA, and went over the county’s Local Emergency Operations Plan.

Following the regular session, the aldermen adjourned to closed session where they addressed real estate and personnel issues.

Before adjourning, the aldermen also voted to forego the scheduled Feb. 26 meeting. Mayor Eddie Maggard said if something comes up before that time that needs to be addressed, a special meeting will be called.

In closed session, Lemuel Berry was employed in the Sanitation Department.

In addition to aldermen Loftin and Long, council members David Norman and Ric Engelhardt were also present for Tuesday’s regular meeting.