During Tuesday’s Altus City Council meeting, Council engaged in a lengthy discussion and weighed many variables in the consideration of the Rotary Center located at Hightower Park. Options included renovating it, demolishing the building or using the building for storage of Christmas in the Park lights and display materials. Council learned of significant amounts of asbestos in the main dinning area and mold throughout the building. The building was also said to have roofing problems, no usable restrooms in the building, and other fixes that are needed. The renovation of the Rotary Center is estimated to cost well over $190,000, and Council voted in favor of demolishing the building.
The discussion did not come without first acknowledging that the building means something to people in the community. But in the end, the deciding factor was the $190,000 in repairs.
“Because it’s been ignored and allowed to fall apart, that’s why we’re here,” said David Fuqua, City Manager.
Another very important and time consuming item on Council’s agenda was the public hearing to clarify and restate the purpose of MAPS sales tax revenues for the Fire Department.
Kyle Davis, Interim Altus Fire Chief, with many fire fighters behind him, spoke to Council about the needs of the Fire Department. The Altus City Council agreed that with the significant renovation, maintenance and new building needs of the Fire Department, and to approve the adoption of Ordinance No. 2015-19 of the City of Altus. The ordinance clarifies and restates the purpose of said MAPS sales tax revenue that was implemented by Ordinance no. 2008-12. This makes provisions severable, containing other provision relating thereto; and declared an emergency. Both items were approved.
Council then approved acceptance of the 16432 CDBG 15 grant, awarded to the City of Altus by the Oklahoma Department of Commerce. The administration contract with Southwestern Oklahoma Development Authority (SWODA) for the administrative costs that have been budgeted is part of the grant (16432 CDBG 15).
Council voted in favor of increasing the purchase price of the green roller for the golf course on the Capital Purchase list from $6,150 to $9,783.
Council also voted in favor of authorizing staff to increase the purchase price of the courtesy car for the airport on the Capital Purchase list from $25,000 to $30,000 and to change from one new mid-sized SUV to two used vehicles.
The regular Altus Municipal Authority meeting (AMA) was held prior to the City Council meeting.
The finance reports for both AMA and City for the month of August 2015, were accepted.
A report was also given by the new Public Works Director, regarding resolution of permit violation at the Southeast Wastewater Treatment Plant, regarding concentration of chloride in effluent.
After discussion and consideration the AMA voted to approve a Memorandum of Agreement between Altus Air Force Base, the Altus Municipal Authority, and the Southwest/Area Economic Development Corporation (EDC), regarding the Oklahoma State Quality Jobs Program Act (OJP) for work performed at Altus AFB associated with the KC-46A Formal Training Unit (KC-46A FTU). Brian Bush, President and CEO of the Altus Chamber of Commerce, states that the program is estimated to bring in anywhere from $7M to $10M. He said that the program will focus on conducting projects that are mutually beneficial to the base (Altus Air Force Base) and the community.
The AMA approved the authorization of staff to purchase an additional pickup in an amount not to exceed $26,500 for the new Public Works Director/Engineer, from the Capital Purchase list.
With no new business for the AMA or City Council Meeting, appointments or comments, the meeting adjourned.
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