The Marionville board of aldermen met last Thursday for its monthly meeting in front of a full gallery of citizens and police department employees, voting on several items, including the re-zoning of a property at Benton and Coleman.
The property is currently zoned "agriculture," but on the recommendation of the planning and zoning commission, the board voted to re-zone it to "R-1" or mobile home. Under the new zoning, the city would be able to construct soccer fields or some other recreational facility for public use. After the measure passed, Mayor Doris Rapp pointed out that the city will need to hold a public hearing on the matter before it becomes official.
In new business, the board voted to pass a resolution adopting the Lawrence County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan, which requires updating every five years.
The board then heard alderman Nanette Bowling's concerns over traffic congestion at Central and Highway 60. Bowling was concerned that drivers turning on to the highway are sometimes doing so while blind to the traffic, saying the city is "lucky no one has been killed" there, to which an officer responded that there have been deaths at that intersection in the past. Ultimately, the only thing the city can do right now is to contact MoDOT, which Rapp volunteered to do.
Also in new business, the board considered whether or not to waive city taxes and fees on properties that have been offered at least four times at the county tax sale. After some discussion on whether to waive some or all taxes and fees, the aldermen decided it was in the best interest of the city to do whatever it took to get the properties sold. The motion to waive all taxes and fees on the properties passed unanimously.
Also at the request of Alderman Bowling, the board then discussed what to do about the abundance of cats at a property on South Euclid. Neighbors have previously complained about the 30-plus cats at the property and surrounding area, as city ordinance allows only four pets per residence.
Board members said the woman living at the property is "willing to get rid of them but doesn't want them euthanized," which led Rapp to contacting the State Humane Society in hopes the organization could take some and arrange adoptions. In the meantime, the board voted to issue a ticked to the resident for violating the ordinance.
In other new business, the board adopted an ordinance changing the speed limit on Western Street (Highway 60 to South Street) from 25 to 35 miles per hour. The board also gave suggestions for appointment to a citizens board regarding how to use the Ludwig property given to the city. Names suggested included Larry Ludwig, Glen White, Steven Kinkead, John Horner and Jim Smith.
After department reports, aldermen comments and mayor comments, the board adjourned until the next meeting, scheduled for 6:30 p.m., October 12, at the fire station.