Martin Ace Hardware set to open

By Mary O.Esparza -

The regular meeting of the Economic Development Corporation or EDC board of directors met Thursday in the city council chambers.

Steve Allison of Western Equipment was approved for a two-year term as the agriculture representative on the board. The EDC approved the June board minutes and the monthly payable and claims for the amount of $71, 587.61, as well as the finance and treasurer’s report and an information only report for the period ending June 30.

EDC Director Brian Bush presented various proposals for products and services from Chumura, MySidewalk and Lee Cambell Marketing to develop data collection and analysis tools to market Altus to possible employers and companies. The board tabled the agenda item to allow Bush more time to research the options available and it is scheduled to be heard at the next meeting.

The second phase of the Altus Air Industrial Park contract was given the green light with the Architects in Partnership. Bush will take this report and information to the October tanker meeting he will attend.

The report from Keith Weber on the federal job training grant opportunity “America’s Job” could be worth up to $6 million. Interested partners would be Western Oklahoma State College, the Southwest Technology Center and Altus Air Force Base.

“It would help strengthen job opportunities for the people already living in Altus,” Weber said.

The board asked questions on the amount of participation and support needed and sought to ensure that there were no conflicts with other projects already in motion. Weber was directed to move forward and return with answers.

Planning Director Barbara Burleson gave a report that on Aug. 1, the doors of the new Martin Ace Hardware store will open. The store will not sell lumber — only plywood — so there limited competition with other hardware stores in Altus, she said.

Ace has ordered signs and expanded the parking lot. There was no information provided about other businesses on the opposite end of the complex.

In the housing update for Altus, there are 28 homes with construction underway.

Burleson also reported that a trailer park would be renovated and reopen with 199 lots.

“Its makeover will make the Camelot Trailer Park the fine, clean, and fun trailer park of years ago,” Burleson said.

A California investor owns the property and plans new construction of a swimming pool, tennis courts, roads and electrical renovation, she said.

“The owner has brought an individual from California to be on-site, working through the entire process, because there is such a large amount of roadwork needed,” Burleson said.

Other economic development work in progress includes the Nutrition Livestock Center construction and the opening of the Privett Event Venue Center on Forrest Street.

Chairman Dr. Rick Henry wanted to show appreciation to business owners who maintain the upkeep of their property.

“A thank-you and token of appreciation goes a long way,” Henry said.

Board member Kevin Martin said that McDonald’s current owner Mike Weber has sold the Broadway Street McDonald’s and the new owners will take over Aug. 1.

Henry and the board welcomed new City Manager Janice Cain.

“I am excited and glad to be here and am ready to work,” Cain said.

In new business the board will research property maintenance codes and how to improve the city scenery.

By Mary O.Esparza

Reach Mary O. Esparza at 580-482-1221, ext. 2077.

Reach Mary O. Esparza at 580-482-1221, ext. 2077.

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