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Ordinance Will Prohibit Smoking In City Parks

Aldermen voted unanimously to ban all tobacco products from City parks at their regular monthly meeting April 6. The ban takes effect 30 days after publication of the public notice.

Mayor Larry Hart announced he had received a letter from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) stating the new flood plain map would take effect Sept. 17.

By Jack Gurner

WATER VALLEY – The use of all tobacco products in City parks will become illegal after Aldermen amended the parks ordinance at their regular monthly meeting Tuesday, April 6.

Mayor Larry Hart told Board members that most of the signs in City parks now read “no smoking” or “no tobacco products.”

“In talking to Chief (Mike) King the other day,” Hart said, “he reminded me that we don’t have that in our ordinance. So, we need to amend our ordinance to include that.”

The change will take effect 30 days after the publication of the public notice in the Herald.

Among other actions, the Board of Aldermen:

• Entered into the minutes that City Clerk Vivian Snider completed mandatory municipal clerk training.

• Agreed to sell two surplus police vehicles, a 2001 and a 2004 Crown Victoria, to James Grimmett for $800 each.

• Changed the city employee health insurance plan to Blue Cross because of a price increase. “We were with Humana and AmFirst which was a gap plan,” Snider told the Aldermen. “They had increased from $326 to $700 – roughly – per employee. So, I knew we needed to look around.”

The City Clerk explained that MorganWhite Insurance representatives Brad Camp and Mike Roberts from Oxford sought quotes for the City.

“Blue Cross quoted us $348 per employee. We’re having to raise the deductible to $750. But, I feel like it is a good plan and I think the employees will be satisfied with it,” Snider added.

• Heard from Mayor Hart that he had received a letter from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announcing when the new flood plain map would take effect.

“A lot of people have been wondering when the magic date was and it’s Sept. 17 of this year,” Hart said.

Alderman Larry Bell asked, “If your policy comes due in May or June are you going to be able to renew it to September or are you going to have to pay the whole year?”

Hart said that he knew the answer, but referred the question to “our insurance expert” Alderman Donald Gray.

“You’re going to pay the full year,” Gray answered.

• Gave the Mayor authority to pursue grant money to rehabilitate the City’s sewer infrastructure.

“We’re looking at about a $500,000 project,” Hart said about the project that includes approximately 3500 feet of sewer line.

• Voted to grant a new subordination agreement for the Springhill North MB Church property.

Hart said that when the City sold the land to the Church in 1997, the agreement included a provision reserving the right of first refusal on the property if the church decided to sell it or use the property for other than church purposes.

The bank asked the City to subordinate that claim, according to Hart. Now the church is moving to a new lender and they are asking the City for the same subordination agreement.

“Same thing we had all along,” said Hart, “just the banks have changed.”

• Entered executive session at 6:47 and met for 9 minutes to discuss personnel matters.

At the end of the session Hart reported that Assistant City Clerk Judy Davis would be retiring and that Margie French would be hired to work part-time in the City’s administrative office.

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