A resignation from the city council in Pierce City was announced at the July council meeting.
Mayor Carol Hirsch reported that Alderman Willie Parks has verbally submitted his resignation. A job change will keep Parks out of town four days a week, including when the council meets.
Parks was in the second year of his second term and hoped to continue volunteering as a firefighter. Hirsch expected to appoint a successor in August.
With sales tax income down significantly this year, pressure from infrastructure repairs has kept the city barely operating in the black. Hirsch reported the latest utility system problems came over Memorial Day weekend when lightning knocked out a fuse on the south well.
Once the problem was isolated, the south well was easily returned to service. However, in the process it was discovered the new west well would not stay on line when called into service.
John Forrester from Scott Engineering, the firm that installed the plant, had to adjust the pressure setting while on the phone with the manufacturer, Hirsch said. In future emergencies, the well should be set for use now, she added.
The west well is not used regularly, because the well generates too much pressure to be used over a prolonged period without causing pipes to break. Forrester suggested the problem could be solved if a main was run from the well to the nearest six-inch line on Walnut Street. Hirsch said the city has no funds for such a project now.
Hirsch had hoped to complete negotiations with the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad for 27 acres of land south of the railroad tracks and west of Highway 97. She reported the railroad is now asking the city to erect a fence along the south end of the property, separating the land from the railroad tracks.
Hirsch feared the city lacked enough money for the fence, nor did she think even a smooth wire fence was a good idea, since it would snag debris under flood conditions. From her talks with railroad officials, she said the test wells on the grounds may no longer be needed. Hirsch planned to continue talks so that lease payments on the city's main sewer lift station, located on railroad property, could end.
Aldermen received a request from the Senior Citizens Center asking the city to again drop the charges for water service. The city had only recently resumed billing the center. Clerk Julie Johnson said the bill would only run around $35 a month.
Alderman Scott Wahl offered to research the request, signed by all of the Senior Center board, further before recommending a course of action to the council.
The dog pound is nearly finished. Alderman Cory Sooter reported the concrete floor had been poured. Fencing needs to be installed around the facility and a whistle placed in the nearby road to prevent flooding.
The overdue 2007 audit from the Springfield accounting firm of Mitchell, Roy and Wilson was accepted. Clerk Johnson reported in a number of places the report read word-for-word with the 2006 audit. Auditors gave the city a clean audit, which Hirsch said was "the best we can hope for."
Response to the city's new recycling program was up 400 percent for the second collecting session, reported Alderman John Archer. Putting notice of the recycling schedule on the water bills had been a big help, Archer said. The next session will be Aug. 8.
Police Chief Mike Abramovitz reported officers are working a number of stealing incidents. Officers made five arrests during June, one on a Monett warrant and one for driving while intoxicated.
Firefighters answered nine calls in June and provided stand-by assistance at two rodeos. One call was for a grass fire, and eight came in response to medical emergencies.