Wed April 07, 2021

By Dillan Kelsey

Hope City Board on Airport, Sanitation Rates & More
The Hope City Board of Directors met Tuesday, April 6 for their monthly meeting. The meeting began with invocation and the pledge, followed by reviewal of the minutes from the last meeting. The board approved the minutes and moved onto the next item.

A request from the Eagle Scouts was presented by Hunter Mathis. The Hope Lions Club requests permission to construct a concrete pad just west of the roll up door on the north side of Coliseum. They would like to have a hard surface to use to place their equipment on. They will be responsible for construction of the slab and would also need to notify One Call so that no problem would occur with utilities. Director Mark Ross recommended they approve the request because the project would be at no cost to the City. The board approved the construction project.

Chamber of Commerce Director Beckie Moore, attended the meeting to request permission to begin planning the Watermelon Festival for 2021. “All necessary health precautions will be taken when that time comes,” said Moore. The board approved the request.

New Millennium currently leases two parcels of property in the area of the closed runway at the Hope Municipal Airport. These pieces are on two separate leases. For ease of operations on New Millennium’s part, they would like to consolidate the leases and also have them convert to month-to-month rentals after 6 months so that they do not have to be accrued into multiple corporate years for accounting purposes. The total for the two leases is $1,250 per month. New Millennium understands that these are short term non-aeronautical leases that can be terminated by the City if the property is needed for aeronautical use. The board approved this consideration.

On March 12, 1998, the City of Hope purchased a Mako AC 04 compressor for the SCBA bottles. This compressor performed flawlessly for many years. However, due to age, its performance started to decrease. Recently Hope Fire Department purchased a new Mako compressor to replace the old one. The new compressor is able to fill up the cascade bottles in an hour, whereas the old one was taking almost 24 hours to fill them up. The board voted for the old air compressor at the fire department be designated as surplus.

The board discussed the item pertaining to the Methodist Church Fire Work show this year. The agenda item proposed that the fire work show be held at the airport on July 3rd, 2021. The event would be underwritten by the Hope Tourism Commission and the airport would be shutdown to air traffic for the day. The board approved this consideration.

The board rediscussed the matter of Kim Kuhl’s Memorial Day Radio Show and voted to approve the event allowing the Lower Arkansas Hams to host their radio swap show for a fee of $75.

In February 2021 the Wastewater West Treatment Plant began experiencing problems with one of its four blowers. The Hoffman blower in question is approximately 40 years old. Blowers are required equipment that aerates the effluent allowing microbial activity to breakdown wastewater solids and is a required necessary piece of equipment for the treatment of waste water. City Staff contacted Red River Pump Specialist, a vendor that they work with on a regular basis, and received a quote to repair of $15,174.80. After removing the pump to their facility and upon further inspection, it was determined that the blower could not be refurbished and would require replacement. Upon further research, Staff found three companies that sell refurbished blowers. After conversation with Glen Spears, the City’s Engineer, it was determined that refurbished blowers have a comparable life expectancy to new blowers. New blowers are approximately twice the cost. The board voted to approve the purchasing of the refurbished blower.

The board reviewed finance reports on sanitation provided to them by Assistant City Manager, J.R. Wilson who said the department was in need of around $375,000 to keep from going into reserves to be able to operate this year. The plans showing an increase of revenue were shown to the board, also indicating a rate increase of $3 per month for the first year and then 50 cents per year for the next four years. Commercial rates would see an increase of $4.25 to $6 per cubic yard and an additional 25 cents per year for 4 years. If the plan was approved the trash bags would again be provided by the City. No action was taken by the board at this meeting but feedback from the public was requested for the decision later on.

City Manager Catherine Cook shared that Patmos Road is finally finished and wanted to publicly thank everyone in the community for being patient while repairs were being made to the road. Cook also shared updates on the streetscape project and that they are working on the pools for summer time.

The meeting was adjourned and they will reconvene for their next month for their regular meeting.