MAYOR’S REPORT FOR FEBRUARY 2017 HOME PRESS                      

John Gillum, CPA and his staff completed the 2015-2016 audit of the City of La Plata and John presented the final report to the La Plata Board of Alderman at the regular meeting of the Board held on Tuesday, February 14th. A copy of the audit is available at La Plata City Hall for review by the public.

The 3M Cogent Fingerprinting system that the City of La Plata began offering on December 19th is being utilized daily by the residents of Northeast Missouri and as of Tuesday, February 14th the city hall staff had done 136 fingerprinting sessions.

Altorfer Caterpillar came on Wednesday morning, February 15th to service the generators and returned again on Friday, February 17th to complete the final testing.

The small electrical bucket truck was having fuel injector issues and after obtaining a bid for a new truck it was the consensus that the necessary repairs totaling $6,274.54 should be done to the truck. The truck was delivered to the Rutledge Garage on Monday, February 6th and the repairs were done by Thursday, February 9th for the truck to be picked up.

New electrical service was completed at the Silver Rails Depot Inn & Suites owner residence on Thursday, February 16th.

The City of La Plata will be accepting sealed bids on the 2015 Ford 150 4x4 crew cab XL pickup currently used as a police vehicle in preparation to replace the vehicle on a two year rotation. For more information, please contact Police Chief Jason Bunch or City Clerk Bobbie Jacques.

Greenhill’s Regional Council of Governments has been subcontracted by Mark Twain Regional Council of Governments since they were unble to fulfill the environmental report needed in regards to the sewer relining project. The cost will be at MTRCG’s expense and the last time I communicated with them I was told that they won’t guarantee the finished document before 90 days but they are hoping that since part of the work had already been done it will be completed by mid March.

Due to requirements set by USDA in order to fulfill our requirements for the sewer improvement loan/grant, the City of La Plata Board of Alderman voted at the February 14th meeting to increase the base rate for sewer services from $35 to $45 per month.

February 9th was the first court date for the City of La Plata cases through Macon County Circuit Court and our City Prosecutor Sherry Darling stated that it went very well. The City of La Plata has already started receiving court fine distributions from the Macon County Circuit Court for cases that have been disposed.

 

The lagoon has been discharging since Tuesday, January 3rd and Mike and Eric have to pull sewer samples every day and they have to make a trip to Edina to take the samples each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for testing. We are very lucky to have the option of taking them to Edina for their wastewater supervisor Michael Wriedt to test versus traveling to Columbia.

Cory, Nathen, and Eric completed the remodeling project at the police station and it is considerably warmer and more secure. On Friday, February 10th, Dena rented the rug doctor and cleaned the carpet in the PD and council chambers.

Officer John Taylor went to Houston, TX on January 20th thru 22nd and picked out “Aron” a Dutch Shephard from Hungary. He is 1 year and 3 months old (the youngest of the group to select from), kid friendly, he can be hugged on, and is very intelligent.  John returned to Houston on February 18th to pick up “Aron” and will be working with him on obedience skills until he returns to Houston for certification in April. The Board of alderman approved a “Training/Schooling Agreement” for Officer Taylor to sign after the complete cost of his expenses are determined. The City of La Plata is very lucky to have the dedication of Officer Taylor who wrote the grant which covered the largest portion of the cost for obtaining the drug dog which will provide service to La Plata and surrounding communities. Recognition to the K9s4COPs grant program which totals around $15,000.00 towards the initial cost of the dog, Macon Orschelns Farm & Home for providing FREE dog food to area drug dogs as well as several other grants that provide for the ballistic vest, muzzle, etc. for the dog.

Officer Martin Kelley began working part-time on January 18th working shifts with Officer Taylor & Officer Henderson.

The City of La Plata had two very nice “thank you notes” mailed to them regarding one resident requesting gravel for his driveway as well as from another resident who was concerned about a dead tree that might take out electricity as well as do damage to his property if there was a storm. Our employees are always available to provide service to the community but appreciate receiving recognition.

Greg and Eric went to Illinois on Wednesday, January 11 and picked up the used salt spreader which was approved for purchase by the Board of Alderman on Tuesday night. Greg said they had it installed by the next afternoon with some modifications and it was ready for the ice storm that weekend. He reported that it worked well for our needs.

There was a “Bed Bug Seminar” on Monday, February 6th, 2017 held by Mark Snyder, Macon County Health Inspector of the Macon County Health Department. He brought me handouts that he provided at the seminar that was well attended by over 30 area individuals representing groups such as La Plata Christian Ministries, La Plata R-II School, La Plata Nursing Home, & La Plata Senior Citizens. The Macon County Health Department encourages area residents to visit their new website at http://www.maconmohealth.org/ for many helpful articles.

In reviewing MO HB 383, I am very concerned if this bill should become law as of the proposed date of August 27th, 2017, it will tremendously impact the City of La Plata. The bill reads: Prohibits a municipality or utility company from holding an owner of premises liable for the occupant's delinquent utility payments.” I encourage citizens to send emails of concern to local legislatators and the governor expressing the financial impact the passage of this bill would have on rural Missouri communities. The need to increase utility deposits in preparation for this should the bill pass will be discussed during the March 14th meeting of the Board of Alderman. At the current time, the City doesn’t have a sewer deposit which will most likely be voted upon as well increasing the water and electric deposits in order to come closer to covering the two months that are due when renters move out of town and don’t pay the final utility bills.

Don Frost and Ed Mansfield of the La Plata Masonic Lodge have both spoken to me about using Santa Fe Lake for the “Annual Ollie Johnson Fishing Tournament” this year due to the former facility not being accessible for future events. I spoke with Stacey Hudson, Park and Recreation Board President and gained approval. The Masonic Lodge will be holding a work day prior to the May 6th event. Mr. Frost will also be eliminating the bee problem that developed at the Santa Fe Lake last summer/fall.

Tina Williams indicated an interest in serving on the La Plata Park & Recreation Board and was approved by the Board of Alderman to replace Misti Dobbs who moved out of the City. Thanks to Misti for her service and Tina for volunteering to serve. Other members of the board are Stacey Hudson, Jason Bunch, Julie Lewis, Sally Moore, Zach Robinson, Tyler Roberts, Tyler Murray, and Brennan Filkins. I spoke with Kiley and Greg regarding the fence and brush hogging at the proposed new came sites as well as Nathen, Cory, and Eric regarding the repairs to the pavilion. Kiley and Greg proposed leaving the fence in place since there is a 22’ opening that the campers can access the new camp sites and during the off season have the gate closed and locked. Nathen, Cory, and Eric looked at the city park pavilion structure and they said it is structurally sound and that the sag in the roof can be repaired. They are going to take the existing roof off and replace it with a red metal roof to match the new bathrooms and cover the ends with white metal as well as white metal ceiling.

Curtis Contracting LLC has been retrained to continue mowing the La Plata Cemetery property’s during the 2017 season at a rate of $750 per mowing and an extra $175 when flower removal is necessary after Memorial Day.

Dena attended the MOCCFOA Northeast Division meeting held in Edina on Wednesday, February 8th and she was elected to serve as the recording secretary for the group for the coming year.

Bobbie will be attending the MOCCFOA Spring Institute to be held at the Holiday Inn Executive in Columbia on Monday, March 13th and Dena will attend the institute from Tuesday, March 14th  thru Thursday, March 16th.

City Hall was closed on Monday, February 20th for Presidents’ Day.

The next meeting of the La Plata Board of Alderman will be held at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 14, 2017 and as always ALL meetings are open to the public. If a citizen wishes to attend and address a specific subject they must contact the city clerk to be listed on the agenda at least 24 hours prior to the meeting.