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City council discusses citizen’s bill

The Cherokee Development Authority and City of Cherokee Councils met at 6 p.m., Wednesday, April 14.

The meeting was called to order with Jeremy Hickman, Lance Miller and David Collins present. Mayor Karen Hawkins and Adrienne Wessels were absent.

The minutes were tabled until the next meeting.

The claims lists and March 2021 financials as presented by RSMeacham CPAs were approved.

Amy Madison was present to discuss her water bill.

She had a bad water leak. The city did adjustment for the last bill for $1,200 and her bill this month was $994. She asked if it could be waived and City Manager Mike Jones told her he would have to take it to the council.

This is her parents’ house and they didn’t know there was a leak. As soon as the bill came they raced to fix the problem. She said it is one event that is stretched over two bills.

The policy now is one adjustment every other year.

The council didn’t approve  adjusting the water bill.

Jones discussed the sewer main emergency notification dated March 18, 2021 and it was accepted.

Jones gave his manager’s report:

• City crews have been busy with projects.

• The 720’ of sewer main along 5th Street has been repaired. Once the dirt is packed the hole will be covered with asphalt or cement.

• City was notified of a sewer backup at 105 East Adams. It was determined there was a problem with the city main. A jet rodder was used to allow the main to begin flowing properly.

• The city received a citizen’s complained of smell of sewer at 414 East 7th. It was determined there was a problem with the sewer service line, causing a sewer backup. The resident was notified and given 10 days to address the problem. Failure to comply will result in water service being discontinued and citations issued.

• There is a water main that needs repaired at 4th and Pennsylvania. To make this repair, water service to the City of Cherokee will be temporarily suspended. During this time, we will also address a leaking fire hydrant at 10th and Pennsylvania and install a shut-off  valve to the fire sprinkler system at 1100 Memorial Drive. This is scheduled to occur next week. The exact date will be determined when they receive the appropriate supplies to make repairs.

The meeting adjourned after hearing no new business.

The City of Cherokee meeting was called to order.

The minutes, claims lists  and February 2021 financials presented by RSMeacham CPA’s were approved.

Jones gave his manager’s report:

• There will be a special meeting at 8:30 a.m., May 3. During this meeting, the mayor will be sworn in, vacant seats will be appointed and sworn in and a new vice-mayor will be elected.

• Appreciation meet and greet for Mayor Karen Hawkins will be at 5:30 p.m., May 3, at City Hall. This event will be open to the community, providing an opportunity to say “thank-you” for Mayor Hawkins many years of service.

• OMAG conducted a reassessment of all city property. Due to the increased appraisals the annual insurance premiums will go up from $16,952 to $21,656 for a difference of $4,704.

• The city will receive $58,004.75 from insurance claim on the old City Hall. Jones will be receiving quotes on demoing the front offices, allowing space for future businesses to have storefront access to the downtown district.

• The city will receive $5,138.62 from insurance claim on airport lounge. Jones will be receiving quotes to repair floor in airport lounge, as well as address water damage near the west doors of the lounge.

• After the cold weather in February, Ohio Street has gotten worse. With the help of Alfalfa County, a thin layer of asphalt was laid on Ohio Street over the worse part of the road.

• They will be ordering another load of cold-lay asphalt to repair the large potholes throughout town. Depending on weather, this is scheduled to be completed within two weeks.

• The cemetery received $1,650 from Roberta Jean Patton Trust Fund.

• The cemetery will be sprayed within the next week.

• The swimming pool is scheduled to be cleaned and prepped by May 12 to prepare for an opening of May 29.

• The baby pool at the city park has been sandblasted and ready to be repainted.

• The county will be hosting a celebration for 100th year anniversary for the courthouse on Friday, April 16.

• Alfalfa County will be tearing down the old grain elevator on Main Street.

• The city is in the process of preparing bid documents to have properties owned by the city on North Texas Avenue to be properly cleaned-up.

• Jones has requested quotes from three companies to replace top panel of glass in City Hall community room, frame-in and insulate police department and make current bathrooms ADA compliant.

• An animal fell through the ceiling of the east side of the building and caused some damage. Traps were set, but the animal was not caught. It is believed that the animal escaped back through the ceiling. This room will need to be repaired. While repairs are being made, Jones will have the bathroom floors re-tiled as the tile is breaking and coming up.

• The city website is up and Jones needs pictures and bios from the council.

• The library purchased new software to allow for greater online security for the internet service provided to the community. The library applied for and was awarded the grant to help pay for the software.

• Librarian Jenny Regier was working on a grant to purchase new computers for the library.

• Carolyn Mathis will be retiring at the end of the month. Her last day will be Friday, April 30. A job announcement has been posted and the city is hoping to interview for the position next week.

• Members of the fire department are currently attending structural fire fighting class in Goltry.

• The fire department received $3,300 from Roberta Jean Patton Trust Fund.

• The command truck was recently striped and installation of emergency equipment and radio has been scheduled.

• Fire department received new SCBAs. Two were purchased through a grant the city received and the remaining were purchased with county money.

• Chief Ryan McNeil completed an advanced K-9 school with partner Zach.

• Officers TJ Hall and Todd Fink will attend a refresher EVOC class in Oklahoma City.

• The Cherokee Police Department along with members of the Alfalfa County, Blaine County and Major County Sheriff’s Departments, and Helena Police Departments, will be participating in an active shooter training event April 1416. Officer Lloyd Cross will be the liaison for this training.

• Police department has begun citing properties for grass/weed violations.

• The police fine revenue chart was presented.

• City Clerk Amber Wilhite presented the license and permits.

The manager’s report was approved.

After hearing no new business, the meeting adjourned.

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