SIKESTON -- The city of Sikeston will sponsor the Land Clearance Redevelopment Authority's application for a Community Development Block Grant.
The City Council members made their decision on the sponsorship during their regular meeting Monday.
The CDBG is being sought by the LCRA to fund the demolition of the old Federal Compress building on West North Street which LCRA Chairman David Ziegenhorn described in a letter to the Council as "an eyesore and a structure that had outlived its useful life." The total cost for the demolition is expected to be about $325,000.
The LCRA first attempted to get a CDBG for this project last year but was ineligible as the previous CDBG had not been closed out, city officials recalled.
As the city owns adjacent land, the demolition will clear the way for redevelopment in a 12-acre area.
Also requesting CDBG sponsorship was the Cornerstone Baptist Church which hoped to use the money to establish a faith-based program to target youth drug abuse.
While Matt Marshall, who represented the church, pointed out the two applications would not compete with each other as they are under different CDBG line items, the city can only have one active sponsorship for another entity at a time.
In other business Monday:
* A contract for a digital mapping system/geographic information system was awarded to the low bidder, Special Data Research, for $61,000.
Drew Juden, director of the Sikeston Department of Public Safety, explained how the digital mapping system will enable 911 dispatchers to pinpoint calls and will bring up a picture of the front of the building where the call originates.
"It's not just a 911 map, it's a digital map that can be shared across departments," he added. "It will give us a very interesting tool to work with."
The other bidder, Midland GIS Solutions of Sunrise Beach, offered a system for $68,464.
The digital mapping purchase will be funded through the city's 911 fund.
* Council members approved replacing yield signs for traffic going east and west at Laurelwood and Brushwick with stop signs.
The change was requested because drivers were reportedly not obeying the yield signs.
Council members also approved placing a stop sign on Daffodil at the George E. Day Parkway.
* The bridge summit held in September to highlight the need to replace bridges connecting Missouri to Kentucky is not the last word.
"We're continuing to pursue the bridge across the Mississippi River," Mayor Mike Marshall said. "We have a meeting scheduled for Friday morning with some legislators from Missouri, from Kentucky, other leaders, to continue to move the ball forward."
City officials will also meet in December with U.S. Rep. Jo Ann Emerson and are planning a presentation to highway officials in Poplar Bluff, he said.
"I want you to know we are moving forward on this bridge project," Marshall said.
* Marshall said he wants to see a big year-long celebration of Sikeston's 150th anniversary in 2010.
"We are going to start forming some planning committees after the first of the year," he said. "I'm going to ask for volunteers from the community to help make this a great celebration."
In addition to volunteers, Marshall welcomed ideas and suggestions from citizens which can be submitted by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
* Larry Braden was appointed to fill the unexpired term of Carl Addison on the Southeast Missouri State University - Sikeston Advisory Council, formerly known as the SAHEC Advisory Council.
Addison is relocating, according to city staff.
This interim term will run through Dec. 31, 2009.
The SES Advisory Council meets on a quarterly basis to make recommendations on the curriculum offered at the Sikeston campus.
* Council members approved the purchase of a 2008 diesel engine one-ton truck with dump bed from the sole bidder, Sikeston Motor Company, for $36,354.
This vehicle will replace the city's 1998 flat bed truck with hoist.
* Council members awarded $4,500 in Domestic Violence Surcharge funding to the House of Refuge. As the only domestic violence shelter in town, it is the only eligible recipient for the $2 per case surcharge adopted in 2003 to fund the city's domestic violence shelters. The budget projects the fund will bring in about $4,600 this year.
* Council members authorized a settlement from Verizon Wireless of $113,000 for an unpaid 5-percent city tax on telephone service.
* Council members approved a bill replating lots 1 through 7 in Block 2 of the Fairgrounds Addition located at the corner of North and Bowman.
These seven lots, which are zoned for commercial use, will become three larger lots, according to Trey Hardy, community redevelopment coordinator.
* Council recommended appointments for an ad hoc Airport Advisory Committee.
* A first reading on a bill renewing the ATMOS energy franchise was tabled.