Community

Hope Board Meets to Discuss Alley Closure, Encroachment, Bailer, Premium Pay

At their regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday night, the Hope Board of Directors discussed several items including a proposed ordinance to close an alley, to allow a downtown business to encroach on the sidewalk, repair/replace a landfill bailer, and to discuss premium pay for employees.

The first item discussed was the closure of an alley running through Lots 1-12 of Block 4 and Lots 1-12 of Black 5 of the Original City of Hope. After discussion, the board considered a proposal to close the alley, distributing the space between property owners. The proposal passed unanimously.

Afterward, the board considered a request by Steve Harris to look into adding a balcony to a property downtown at the corner of Main and Second that would encroach on the sidewalk. Discussion followed, allowing that Harris and his contractor would look into the structural aspects of adding the balcony, The board granted approval to move forward with fact finding about the project.

The board then considered a waiver of bid ordinance to replace a bailer at the landfill. The bailer is several years old, and parts of it will have to be fabricated to be replaced. The board unanimously agreed to move ahead with getting the belt and tail section of the bailer replaced and repaired.

Next, the board looked at the premium pay rate for city workers who are currently employed and have worked throughout the previous year during the pandemic. It was determined that city workers who are currently employed with the city of Hope will receive a total of $5,000 in premium pay under ARPA, with a deduction of $500 per month every month they weren’t employed with the city since January 2021.

Finally, the board approved the budget for 2022, before hearing from the City Manager Catherine Cook. Cook brought forward the drainage issue that is troubling Willie Walker at his property near Elm Street. The city has agreed to install a culvert to help divert water from the property, however there is some confusion as to whether or not the city is responsible for a valve that controls sewer flow under the property. The board agreed to look into the matter and get back with Mr. Walker to resolve the issue.

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