A sidewalk will be constructed on the west side of Anthony Avenue from Morgan Drive to the entrance of Walmart to give pedestrians a safer place to walk going to and from the store.
The Smithville Aldermen voted to appropriate the funds for that project during Monday night's city council meeting.
During the September 19 meeting, Alderman Shawn Jacobs asked again for city officials look into putting in a sidewalk on at least one side of Anthony Avenue near Walmart to keep people from walking in the street, going to and from the store. Jacobs said it is a safety concern, especially at night if pedestrians are wearing dark colored clothing, making it more difficult for motorists to see them.
During Monday night's meeting Mayor Taft Hendrixson said the project will be started soon and it is expected to cost around six thousand dollars. "We've been out there and looked at that. What we think needs doing is on the west side of Anthony, which will disturb not but one driveway. Actually it won't disturb the driveway, but we won't have to go across but one. From the entrance into Walmart off of Anthony Avenue up to Morgan Drive, that's where all the traffic is. On the other end there is concreted drains and that end is not used for walking anyway. The main use for walking is from the entrance of Walmart to Morgan Drive. We have looked at that and decided that we can probably build that and start right away with buying maybe about four thousand dollars worth of materials. The whole thing will cost approximately six thousand dollars if we count our in-house labor and equipment. I think that will be a good thing. We will start on that as quickly as possible," said Mayor Hendrixson.
Meanwhile, in other city business Monday night, Mayor Hendrixson asked that David Bain be hired to replace Hoyte Barrett, who retired in June as supervisor of the sewer rehab crew. Mayor Hendrixson said Bain has filled that position since Barrett has been gone "but is not receiving the same pay for it, which is a dollar and something and hour more than what he is making now. David is doing a good job. I would like to ask for a motion for him to fill that position, vacated by Hoyte," said Mayor Hendrixson.
Alderman Steve White responded, "I thought we would take some applications and do some interviews"
Mayor Hendrixson answered, "I've had him and three more (employees) that said they might be interested, but one didn't have his Commercial Drivers License (CDL) and one of them has already quit. If you want to interview the two, you can," said Mayor Hendrixson.
White replied,"That would probably be better"
Alderman Gayla Hendrix then asked "Is there anything in place about advertising the position for an amount of time before hiring someone for it?"
Mayor Hendrixson said "If we don't have any applications, and we have stacks of applications down there right now for people that we hire, but if we don't have any applications we will always advertise. But we need to do in-house on promotions. I think that's what ordinance 287 says we'll do. So I'll try to get that one and the other one lined up and we'll try to do an interview but Mr. Bain has already been doing this job since June," said Mayor Hendrixson.
The aldermen voted to hire two employees in the police department who have completed their 60 day probationary period. Mayor Hendrixson said both Lawrence Avera and Steven Barrett, are certified officers. Avera was hired July 21 at $12.06 cents an hour. His pay will increase to $13.48 per hour. Barrett was hired on July 22 making $12.06 per hour. His pay will increase to $13.48 per hour.
On another issue, Alderman Danny Washer asked that something be done about the roof of city hall, which has sprung some leaks. Mayor Hendrixson said "We'll get someone to look at it and see what needs to be done. I don't know that we need a whole new roof maybe we just need some repairs," he said