The Durant City Council met Tuesday evening at City Hall to take care of city business.
Awards were presented by Mayor Stewart Hoffman to the employees who have accrued years with the city.
Three employees were awarded certificates for 5 years service.
All three were not in attendance to receive their award.
Those are: Royce Hendricks and Chris Rose with Durant Multi Sports Complex, and Philip Walston with Durant Landfill.
Three employees received their ten-year awards and were in attendance.
Those are: Christopher “Shane” Harkey with Durant Police, Kelly Hawthorne with Durant City Utilities and Timothy Henson with Durant Street Department.
Each received a certificate, lapel pin and a check from Mayor Hoffman and City Manager Tim Rundel.
Hoffman read a proclamation for Coach Mike Metheny who is the winning-est coach in history for his more than 1,300 wins. That number keeps growing. Mayor Hoffman also recognized Fair Housing Month for April.
Durant accepted two Certificates of Merit.
Becca Collins Director of Grants for Durant said, “One is for the community and one is for business in Durant.”
The council voted to table an incentive package item they could have approved.
The package gives incentives to a developer who promises to bring a big-box grocery chain to Durant.
The chain having the highest chance of locating here, to date, is Albertson’s.
The council chambers had many in attendance to support Randy Sullivan and the Sullivan family who owns two locally owned grocery stores in Durant.
They own Greenspray and Sav-A-Lot and were concerned about wrong data presented to the city by the developer.
Sullivan used a portion of his time to talk, even though the item was tabled.
He told people to tell their friends, and shop his store and in 3-5 years, he will build a better store than an Albertson’s. His hook phrase that got a roaring round of applause, “It won’t cost you a penny.”
It is noted by many that attendance at council meetings is up, while voters voting in the recent election numbers were down.
In that recent election, Oden Grube was elected to the council, while Mayor Stewart Hoffman will be stepping away from public service.
It’s not known at this time whether he will seek office in the future. The time away from the city duties will give him more time in his employment to get things done.
One council member said that serving on the council does use a lot of time after-business hours.
The council approved special events for Durant as we head toward summer.
The “Magnolia Bike Tour” sponsored by the Durant Rotary Club, “Colton’s Main Street Run” on October 21, 2017 sponsored by Durant Main Street and the “Courthouse Centennial Celebration” for July 15, 2017 sponsored by the Three Valley Museum, all had their permits approved by the council.
They chose to deny a tort claim made by Bruce and Nancy Johnson.
Six-hundred-thousand dollars was budgeted or estimated for upgrades to the City Garage.
A bid was presented to the council that was significantly less than originally anticipated.
Daniel Construction won the bid at $24,088 which was significantly less than the approximately $65,000 bid by the other business.Both are much lower than the $600,000 projected.
Daniel Construction won with the city employees in that department very happy with the improvements.
The addition will consist of office space, restrooms and numerous other needed improvements.
There are more city vehicles so more garage space is needed for those vehicles.
Daniel has another project that will delay them working for Durant, but officials said that was not a problem, especially with the savings.
Maintenance services were authorized for Durant city parks.
Mowing vegetation at all the parks keep the employees busy all summer long.
The Durant swimming pool will be in hot water if the council doesn’t figure out a solution for next year.
City Manager Tim Rundel told the council that the Health Department will not approve the current liner one more year, after this season.
He said, “This indeed is the last year for the liner in the pool. We will be making some pretty tough decisions in the next year in regards to the pool. The Health Department will follow through.”
He’s talking about either rebuilding or remodeling the pool to be in compliance with Health Department regulations.
They approved the liner for “one last year,” last year, in order for Durant to have a pool.
The pool will open this year with similar hours as in year’s past.
They will kick off the season with splash day, free swim for the public to be announced later.
They approved the fees and schedule for the pool’s summer 2017 season.
The city accepted a grant for $182,900 for improvements to Carl Albert Park.
Becca Collins acquires grants for the City and has worked on this for months.
City items were declared surplus with the sale being Friday April 21, 2017 at 10 a.m.
John Teel will auction thousands of items declared surplus by multiple agencies.
Property across from Avalon Apartments, formerly Garden Villa, was approved for rezoning.
The owner of Avalon spoke to the council about his plans while Marty Cook with Community Development told them details of the change.
The corner of a property located in a flood plain could one day have a small apartment or duplex units.
The corner is not in the flood plain. Cook said no one contacted his office for or against the zoning change.
Durant Water Supervisor Terry Condor spoke to the council about the water treatment system being at full capacity.
He said work needs to be done on the city’s water treatment plant.
Condor said, “We’re overloaded at the treatment plant. Our tanks are filling up and we have no place to put it. We have it coming in, and it ain’t going out.”
They need more employees as well as more equipment with it currently at capacity.
The next special council meeting will be held April 17, 2017 at 8:30 a.m. when newly elected councilwoman Oden Grube will be sworn in to service for the city of Durant.
This was Mayor Stewart Hoffman’s last meeting as councilman.
Contact Dan Pennington at (580) 634-2162 or email@example.com