A heavy agenda was tackled by the Laurie Board of Aldermen at their monthly meeting on Tuesday, April 11. They opened with a public hearing for a conditional use permit requested by Kerr Brothers Pallets at 203 North Main.
A Planning and Zoning meeting was held on April 5, at which time the public offered up a question about sawdust containment. The business intends to put a bagging system in place. Tuesday’s meeting proceeded with one more question from the public about tax revenue, which the city will be able to collect. The board approved the permit, and Kerr Brothers will begin their business of constructing pallets, furniture and flooring.
The newly re-elected Aldermen Carol Gill and Karen Dobbins were sworn in for another term, at which time Municipal Judge Pat Scott mentioned she would be retiring in November.
Next up was the matter of the Laurie Post Office, where the board was presented with a response from Congresswoman Vicki Hartzler, whom they had mailed shortly after the issue arose. Her response was merely a confirmation of what had been previously discussed at the meetings: There was nothing to be done, and a permanent post office wasn’t planned. The board said there was no option but to wait until the moratorium on contracts comes up in July.
The sidewalk project is in the final stages of completion, with one last change order being put through. No timeline for completion was discussed at the meeting. The board also reviewed bids for for the street paving project, and settled on Magruder, who had the low bid of $172,174.70. City Clerk Ron Clarke told the board that he had called the references Magruder provided, and had been informed they were excellent workers with quality output.
The purchase of a maintenance truck, which was originally discussed and approved at last month’s meeting, came up once more. Clerk Clarke told the board that the trade-in value for their old vehicle was less than expected, so he looked into purchasing a gasoline vehicle as opposed to a diesel vehicle. The board approved the purchase of the gasoline variant, and at Clarke’s suggestion placed the old vehicle up for bid on a website dedicated to auctioning off municipal surplus at no charge.
The board then moved on to the issue of waste chemicals being dumped into the sewer system. Clerk Clarke recommended they update their existing nuisance ordinance on the dumping of chemicals into the stormwater system to include the wastewater system. City Lawyer Steve Grantham said that seemed to be the best option, but stated they would have to go through the process of amending the ordinance. It will be voted on at a later meeting. It was also mentioned that someone had once again dumped chemicals at the car wash, so an urgency for the ordinance was felt.
The board also discussed adopting a social media policy once more. A sample policy was provided, and the board approved Clarke to move forward with placing it in the municipal employee handbook.
Alderman Dobbins stated that she it was a good idea, based on observation of issues from other municipalities.
“It seems to be a problem all over,” she said.
Clarke agreed, telling the board that it was a proactive measure. The board will vote on the changes to the employee handbook at next month’s meeting.
New business started off with the approval of Kerr Brothers permit, and the abandoning of a road easement in the Landings of Laurie Subdivision. The easement was serving no purpose, and no homes will be landlocked.
Corey Tenbensel, on behalf of the Lake of the Ozarks Regional Economic Development Council (LOREDC), presented the board with the option of joining the group. He gave a brief presentation on what the group offered and what the could do, characterizing them as “neighbors helping neighbors”. Alderman Herb Keck said he had seen nothing but cooperation come from the group, and advocated joining.
“I see it as a way we can benefit from economic development without having a dedicated employee working on it,” he stated.
The board voted to join LOREDC at the Silver level, investing $250 into the group.
The board reviewed the water and sewer rates for the city, and opted not to change them at this time. They also reviewed a liquor license application for Smokin’ Bones BBQ. The board voted to allow it.
Finally, Clerk Clarke recommended the board put out a Request for Qualifications (RAQ) to engineering firms for a report on putting six-inch water lines along O Road. The board told Clarke they though it had been discussed in the past, if not actually done. Clarke responded that he would look for it, but an RAQ would still need to be done to update the report. The board approved it, and the meeting was adjourned.