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Public safety sales tax placed on April ballot

Voters will get a chance to decide on April 3 whether to add a half-cent to the sales tax in Jackson to improve public safety. The Jackson Mayor and Board of Aldermen voted unanimously on Jan. 8 to put the measure on the ballot. (Aldermen Katy Liley and Phil Penzel were absent.)

The funds raised from the additional sales tax will be used to build a new police station, which is crowded in its current location where it shares space with Fire Station No. 1. Once the police department moves out, the fire department will expand to fill the entire building.

Funds will also be used to add police officers and fire-fighters, and to purchase equipment.

More information about the sales tax will be forthcoming as the election draws near.

In other action:

• Meeting date change: The Feb. 19 meeting of the Board of Aldermen was moved to Monday, Feb. 26, because of the Presidents’ Day holiday.

• Park Day set: The Board set the annual Park Day for Saturday, April 28, beginning at 8 a.m. at Shelter No. 1 in City Park. This is an opportunity for individuals and groups to help clean up and beautify City Park.

• E-cycle event set: The Board set an e-cycle electronic waste collection event for 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, June 2, at the Jackson Recycling Center.

• Clean-Up/Fix-Up Days set: The Board set the annual Clean-Up/Fix-Up Days for the week of June 11-15. Residents can dispose of additional trash and large items during this week.

• Depository agreements: The Board authorized the mayor to sign depository agreements with Alliance Bank, Southern Bank, The Bank of Missouri, First Missouri State Bank and US Bank.

• Stormwater consultant: The Board authorized a contractual agreement with HR Green, Inc. of Chesterfield for the firm to act as a stormwater consultant for the City.

• Holiday lights at City Park: Alderman Dave Hitt updated the Board on the successful holiday light extravaganza in City Park. He called it an “overwhelming success” and reported more than 20,000 vehicles drove through the park while occupants viewed the lighted Christmas displays.

“Vandalism was very low this year,” he said. “There was a little the first night and none after that.” Even the squirrels did not bother the displays as much this year, he reported.

• Public works reorganized: City Administrator Jim Roach reported that the Public Works Department has been reorganized because the work load “was getting a bit much” for one man to handle.

Former Public Works Director Rodney Bollinger will take the new title of administrative services director.

He will oversee building and planning, solid waste management, public information and social media, easement acquisition, and grant applications. He will continue to be the contract administrator.

Kent Peetz has been named the new director of public works. He will oversee the management of wastewater, drinking water, sewers and engineering.

Each man will continue to manage the areas of their expertise. Roach liked the new arrangement, saying, “I think it will serve the public better.”

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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