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Discussion begins on preventing Court Street crashes

Thompson, owner of Jones Drug, appeared before the Jackson Mayor and Board of
Aldermen during study session Feb. 1 to see if something can be done by the
City to prevent cars from driving into his business.

Jan. 20, a woman with a medical condition blacked out as she was parked in
front of Jones Drug Store. As she blacked out, she apparently pushed her
accelerator to the floor, jumped the curb and drove all the way through the
store, crashing into the customer counter in the back of the store. Fortunately,
no one was in the path of the car, so there were no injuries.

is the third time a car has jumped the curb and driven into the drug store.
Plus, last summer, a car jumped the curb and crashed into City Hall, just down
the block. This was at least the second time that has happened.

asking our city to contemplate providing some sort of barrier posts or even
concrete flower pots that can be secured into the sidewalk in front of our
store and perhaps down Court Street itself to protect the other businesses as
well,” Thompson and Co-owner Bryan Kiefer wrote in a letter to the Board of

Thompson would like to see steel posts or concrete flower pots placed on the
brick area between the sidewalk and the curb. But City staff disliked that idea
because many utility lines run under that area.

was some talk about placing posts close to the building — as has been done to
Sarah Gerau’s insurance office at the corner of Main and Missouri streets.
Thompson was not sure that posts next to the building would stop cars before
they crashed through the front windows.

was some discussion about replacing the angle parking with parallel parking on
the westside of Court Street, especially in front of Jones Drug Store. (This
would make it similar to High Street, which has angle parking on one side and
parallel parking on the other.) However, this plan would reduce the number of
parking spots Uptown, where parking is already at a premium. And parallel
parking is harder on drivers to accomplish, which could impede traffic on Court

Administrator Jim Roach recommended referring the matter to a traffic engineer.

Budget amendment:
The Board amended the 2020 City of Jackson Annual Budget because
some funds exceeded their appropriations.

New restrooms at City Park:
The Board approved a Park Memorial
Donation Form from the Municipal Band of Jackson for a new restroom facility
near the band shell and renovations to the existing band shell.

new 24-foot square restroom will be built with three facilities for men and
three for women. The current restrooms in the band shell itself will be gutted
and renovated to become climate-controlled storage space.

The estimated value
of the donation is $260,000.

• Soccer field
the Board approved the
application for a grant to help pay for lighting the soccer fields.

• Show-Me Green sales
tax holiday:
The Board approved
the City’s participation in the Show-Me Green sales tax holiday April 19-25.

Sewer: The Board approved a $9,720 task order to Koehler
Engineering and Land Surveying, Inc., of Cape Girardeau, for engineering work
on the North Union Avenue Lift Station and Force Main Project.

Parking prohibited: The Board amended the “Parking Prohibited Schedule” by
adding designations on North Missouri Street near the new courthouse.

Uptown Jackson
Jana Clifton, executive director
of the Uptown Jackson Revitalization Organization, announced three upcoming
events. The February Annual will be Saturday, Feb. 27; SpringFest will be
Friday, April 23 in the Civic Center; and Jackson in Bloom will be Saturday,
April 24. In addition, the organization is planning to have Oktoberfest this
year. (It was cancelled last October because of the pandemic.)

• Water system: During study session, Lisa Fenne-wald of Horner &
Shifrin updated the Board on the Water System Facility Implementation Program.

• Natural gas
City Attorney Tom
Ludwig informed the Board that it was time to renew the natural gas franchise
agreement between the City and Liberty Utilities. Some minor housekeeping
changes were being made to the agreement, which lasts for 20 years.

• Street lights: During study session, the Board discussed installing street
lights in Indian Hills Subdivision. Since only a few residents have requested
street lights, it was recommended that they install security lights on their
own property at their own expense.

If the City installed
street lights, it would require approval of 51 percent of the residents in the
subdivision, and then everyone would be charged for the lights whether they
wanted them or not.

• Taking over county
roads in city limits:
The Board
discussed numerous problems that would be faced if the City agreed to take over
portions of county roads that are partially within city limits.

It would require
establishing property lines, easements and rights of way. The City and County
have different requirements and the transfer of portions of the street from the
county to the city would be a difficult task.

the offer was made by County Commissioner Paul Koeper at a previous meeting, it
was decided that City staff should meet with Koeper to discuss the problems and
see if the County wishes to proceed.

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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