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Public hearing set for Dec. 18 on city’s annual budget and utility rates

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The Jackson Mayor and Board of Aldermen on Nov. 6 set a public hearing for 6 p.m. Monday, Dec. 18, to consider the proposed 2024 City of Jackson annual budget, which includes proposed sewer and other utility rate adjustments.

In other action

• Public hearings held: No one from the public spoke at two public hearings held on Nov. 6.

The first was to consider vacating a portion of Royal Drive public right of way in Forest Acres Subdivision, as requested by Christopher and Kelly Kasten and Zeno and Liza Walker. The request to vacate the public right of way was approved later in the meeting.

The second public hearing was to consider a text amendment to Chapter 65 (Zoning) of the Code of Ordinances regarding attached or painted signs. The amendment allows for bigger signs without the need for requesting a special permit. The amendment was approved later in the meeting.

• Meeting date moved: The Monday, Jan. 1, 2024, meeting of the Board of Aldermen was moved to 6 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 2, in observance of New Year’s Day.

• Jackson North Industrial Park: The aldermen approved a $78,361 task order to Koehler Engineering & Land Surveying, Inc., of Cape Girardeau, for engineering services for infrastructure improvements at Jackson North Industrial Park.

• Extension of contract times: A time extension of 150 days was granted to Power Grid Co., of Fayetteville, GA, for its work on the I-55 Electric Substation Build Out Project. The construction phase is about 95%complete.

A time extension of 150 days was also granted to Power Line Consultants, LLC, of Farmington, for its work on the I-55 Electrical Transmission and Distribution Line Project. The construction of this project is about 70 percent complete.

Both time extensions are due to delays in getting materials.

• Computer server: Because of the age and the end of support for its software, the City of Jackson was in need of a new computer server. The aldermen approved a proposal from C.P.U., Inc., of Cape Girardeau, for a onetime payment of $23,135 for a server and related services, and $200 a month for recommended off-site backup service.

• Restroom No. 1: The aldermen approved a change order requested by Nip Kelley Equipment of Cape Girardeau relative to the Restroom No. 1 Building Replacement Project at Union Street in City Park.

Asphalt paving in the parking area will be replaced by concrete at no cost to the city. This is due to the lack of availability of asphalt. It is believed the concrete will give better drainage and have a longer life-span.

• Shed to store flags: Due to the renovation of the restroom at Brookside Park, it became necessary to find a new location to store American flags displayed around the Veterans Memorial in the park. The aldermen approved a memorandum of understanding with VFW Post 10495, to place a metal shed the VFW purchased behind the memorial wall. The shed is consistent with other buildings in the park.

• Kimbeland lift station: the aldermen approved an addendum to a memorandum of understanding dated Sept. 8, 2021, with 1525 Kimbeland Drive Trust relative to the Kimbeland Lift Station Improvement Project. Part of the gravel road used during construction will be left intact at the request of the current property owner.

• City parks: The aldermen approved text amendments to Chapter 47 (Parks) of the Code of Ordinances.

A curfew is set making it illegal to be in city parks between midnight and sunrise unless events such as ball games extend past midnight or special permits are obtained.

Horses are prohibited in city parks. Vehicles larger than one ton are not permitted on roadways or drives in parks. Trucks or buses may be parked only on designated parking areas.

The ordinance discusses fees for using the park facilities and fees for food trucks. It also discusses a parks foundation that will accept donations.

Park rules may be modified in the event of an emergency to protect life, property and the public good. The pool may be closed during inclement weather.

An appeals process is set.

• Soccer field: Parks and Recreation Director Jason Lipe informed the aldermen during study session that the Jackson Area Organized Soccer Association (JAOSA) would like to donate additional sod, soccer goals and chain-link fencing as part of the fields 12 and 13 project. The additional donation totals $68,000.

• Civic Center: Four bids were submitted to install security cameras in the Jackson Civic Center. The aldermen will award a contract Nov. 20.

• Banking services: The aldermen discussed a change in the procedures for putting the city’s banking services out to bid every three to five years.

It is a lot of extra work for the City to change banks, and it was suggested that if the city staff is happy with its current banking services, it should be allowed to negotiate additional terms with same bank.

No change will be made in the procedure until the current banking contract expires at the end of 2025. The aldermen will vote on this change at a future meeting.

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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