Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Roberts Honored; City Buys Equipment

Sallisaw Mayor Julie Ferguson, left, proclaimed Aug. 8 at Evangelist Minerva Roberts Day in Sallisaw at Monday’s city meeting. Roberts, Ferguson said, was a blessing to the community and a “minister in many, many ways for many, many causes.” Roberts said, “It’s not hard being a servant. You have to love people. It’s God working through Minerva Roberts. Not a day goes by that I don’t get up and pray for the city of Sallisaw.”

Sallisaw Mayor Julie Ferguson proclaimed Aug. 8 as evangelist Minerva Roberts Day at the beginning of the City of Sallisaw meeting Monday and thanked Roberts for her work for many causes. Roberts took no credit for herself, and said “It’s God working through Minerva Roberts.”

During the meeting, city commissioners approved a project to install signals and gates on the Kansas City Southern Railroad crossing at Dogwood Street and Delaware on the city’s east side. The state and federal governments will cover most of the $261,000 project cost, and the city’s 10 percent cost will be $26,100.

Jim Hudgens, Ward 2 commissioner, again voiced his concerns about the city’s finances, and voted against one of the several purchases on the agenda.

The purchases approved are:

-used Digger Derrick Truck for $69,900;

-a mini excavator for $23,000 (Hudgens voted against this purchase);

-a jack hammer for an amount not to exceed $45,000;

-a 10-wheel dump truck for $112,000;

-updated computer equipment for an amount not to exceed $36,000 (older equipment will be recycled and used by the police department); and

-a backup pump and accessories for the wastewater treatment plant for an amount not to exceed $24,000.

The city commissioners approved a contract with Gans for the impoundment of animals. But City Manager Clayton Lucas II noted that impoundments are costing the city more than was being charged to other towns and cities, and recommended the city staff review the contracts for possibly increasing the charge to cover costs.

The commissioners approved an agreement with Retail Attractions LLC of Owasso for retail development consultant services. The contract is for $35,500. Lucas noted that Retail Attractions works with municipalities and retailers to bring retailers to cities and towns.

The commissioners tabled a decision on a request from the Sequoyah County Fire Department Tax Board. The board asked the city to donate a five-acre property on Eppler for a fire training facility. The property was originally to be a new animal shelter, but that project was changed. Lucas noted the property and improvements cost the city about $100,000.

“I’m not opposed to a training facility,” Hudgens said, “I’m opposed to giving away $100,000.”

Hudgens asked for an appraisal of the property and for City Attorney John Robert Montgomery to check on the legality of donating the property to the county. The tax board operates under the auspices of the county.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

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