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City may apply for grant to pay for sidewalks

The low-water bridge over Hubble Creek on Mary Street needs replacing, and the Jackson Mayor and Board of Aldermen have been discussing this matter since last summer.

As part of the project to replace the bridge, the aldermen want to finish the sidewalks on Mary Street that lead up to both sides of the bridge.

During study session Dec. 7, Rodney Bollinger, administrative services director, presented information on a new grant available from MoDOT that, if applied for and approved, would pay a large portion of the cost of the sidewalks.

It is estimated that the cost for the sidewalks, including grading, retaining walls, engineering and all construction costs, will be $142,895. The MoDOT grant requires at least a 20 percent local match. If the City chose to pay at least 35 percent of the cost, instead of 20 percent, it would receive 10 bonus points in the awarding process.

City Staff recommended that the Aldermen approve applying for this grant with a 36 percent match from the City.

If the grant includes the sidewalks on the bridge itself, the City would save even more money.

The total cost of the new bridge and sidewalks is estimated to be $252,279. The City’s portion would be $90,820 and the MoDOT grant, if approved, would pay $161,459.

The Aldermen gave thumbs up, and the grant application will come before them for formal approval at the Dec. 21 meeting.

City Administrator Jim Roach thought Jackson has a good chance of winning the grant from MoDOT. “There’s a good opportunity for some kind of grant here,” he said.

MoDOT will award its grants in March 2021. That’s when Jackson will learn if it has received a grant. Construction will not begin before 2022.

In other action

• Short Street vacation: A public hearing was held regarding Lisa Boyd’s request to vacate a portion of the Short Street public right of way in the Southwestern Realty and improvement Company Subdivision. Boyd was the only one to speak. She said she has been maintaining this vacant property and would like to possibly use it to add onto her driveway.

Later, during action items, the Board approved the vacation.

• Park Board: The aldermen approved the mayor’s appointment of Luke Dry to the Park Board, filling an unexpired term ending May 2023.

• Land donation: The Board approved a Park Memorial Donation form from Robert and Cynthia Lichtenegger for the donation of 1.44 acres of real estate at Brookside Park.

• Public hearing set: The Board set a public hearing for 6 p.m. Monday, Jan. 4, to consider the comprehensive rezoning of certain properties in the 2500-2800 blocks of East Jackson Boulevard, the 2500-2700 blocks of Hilltop Drive and the 1300 and 2800 blocks of Clover Drive, as submitted by the City of Jackson.

• Vacation of public alley: The Board voted to reconsider the vacation of a public alley in Weltecke’s Addition, as requested by Travis and Jessica King, that had previously been approved. The Board then voted to deny the vacation. It was discovered that a private water line ran through that alley, and an easement agreement must be worked out among the various property owners.

• Accepting warranty deed: The Board accepted a general warranty deed from Richard Hartle for a 0.78-acre tract of land located at 1025 S. Farmington Rd.

• Renovation of 111 W. Main St.: Mark Strickland said he is renovating the building at 111 W. Main Street and wants to make the building two-story all the way across. In order to do that, a crane will need to park on the street and lift structural steel into place for about a two-hour period on Monday, Dec. 21. Some parking will not be available and traffic will have to be rerouted slightly to get around the crane.

• Wastewater rates: During study session, the Board discussed the need to raise wastewater rates seven percent in the years 2021, 2024 and 2027 to pay for loans needed to repair and maintain the wastewater system. However, to avoid having water rate increases and sewer rate increases hit residents at the same time, the sewer rate increases may be pushed back to begin in 2023.

Gregory Dullum has worked for The Cash-Book Journal for more than 25 years. Prior to becoming the editor in May 2017, he was production manager, circulation manager and reporter. Before moving to Cape Girardeau in 1988, he was editor of the Saint Louis Park Sailor, a weekly community newspaper in suburban Minneapolis, MN. A native of Minnesota, he returned there after graduating with distinction in 1978 from Ambassador College in Pasadena, CA, with a degree in mass communications. His wife, Marie, whom he met in college, is a native of Zalma, a small town in southeast Missouri. They have two grown daughters and five grandchildren. Gregory may be reached at

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