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City Council Tackles Fuel Bids, Golf Carts, Erosion, Farm to Table, and More Tuesday

It’s going to be a couple weeks still before residents get an idea of how Carmi Fest went financially, but a report is coming.  Mayor Pollard at Tuesday’s City Council meeting says he’s still compiling a few final bills and numbers to plug them into a spreadsheet.  We should learn more at the May 7th meeting.

Also Tuesday evening, there was discussion about the golf cart/neighborhood vehicle ordinance along with a stern warning from Police Chief Jason Carter.

Chief Carter:  Lots of complaints on golf carts, side by sides…just follow the rules, it’s pretty easy.

Mayor Pollard:  We’re starting to get some up here too.  They’re not crossing in the areas they’re supposed to be crossing.  I’ve seen them two or three times coming across catty-corner from Subway to my street on 7th.  And then I think I mentioned a few weeks ago there was one that came across at Fairground and shot over to Rock Bottom.

Alderwoman Sheila Headlee:  Do you still hand out those maps that show where they can cross?

Chief Carter:  They get a sheet of the actual ordinance and it tells where you can cross.

Those who are caught violating the ordinance will no longer be facing a slap on the wrist according to the chief.

Full disclosure, I sent an email to all my officers today and they no longer have discretion on issuing a ticket.  I’ve heard all the complaints I want to hear in the last 10 days.  So I took the discretion away from them on 4 of the violations, those being where they’re crossing at, driving on Main, underage people, and driving on sidewalks…so if that’s observed, they’re going to get a ticket and there’s a good chance their golf cart is going to get towed per the ordinance.  And if you’re crossing where you’re not supposed to, it’s a $250 minimum fine.  We’re done with the warnings.

Council would also hear from resident Joanie Cruse.  She was looking for some advice concerning the backyard of her property on Fair Street.

Our backyard has a ditch that runs through it and then we meet the back of the Carmi Motel and you can kind of see Dr. Roser’s office as well.  So I took some pictures and I just want to know, I think I talked to you Cindy [City Clerk Cynthia Atteberry] and we talked about the middle of the ditch over is my responsibility.  The issue is the erosion.  You’ll see in some of the pictures the concrete isn’t very far where it will come…I means it’s slowly creeping up on me.

Mayor Pollard said ditches are “kind of a sticky situation”.

They don’t really belong to the city.  When I first came on, that was an issue because at that time, there was flooding everywhere.  So we worked with the ditch behind you and I paid to have it all cleaned out.  They went to the homeowners as they were doing each property and said you know we’ll come in and clean it out, but it’s your responsibility to maintain it after that.  We did that from Huck’s all the way to the Christian church, we cleaned that whole street up because that’s a main throughfare that runs through there.  And not a one of them have taken care of it so we’re right back at square one again.

In city business, council approved fixed fuel bids from FS, the city’s current partner.  Estimated costs based on the previous 12 months usage are expected to run $134,367.  That compares to Countrymark’s estimated bid of $312 more.

In addition, council approved bids for the Highway 1 – 1000E watermain replacement using Non Entitlement Units of Local Government Funds.  The bid was awarded to Wiggs Excavating for $112,394, lower than Kiefer Brothers bid just north of $171,000 and well under GroundWorks bid of over a quarter of a million dollars.

Council also approved Brown and Roberts Invoices totaling $108,328.28.

Patrick Scates also spoke Tuesday night setting the groundwork for this year’s Farm to Table event scheduled for October 10th.  The event serves as an unofficial kick off to Corn Day.  Last year, the event had to be cancelled after a snafu not getting permits handled in time.  Approval is expected at the May 7th meeting though at least one alderman, Steve Winkleman, will presumably be voting no.

Of course I live right next to it, I’ve never seen anyone out of order.  I just…I’m glad you’re having it; I think it’s a good event, but I’ve always voted against liquor on everything.  I just…I don’t understand in our society, in our world, why everything that we have no matter what it is that we have to include liquor to it.  I just don’t understand why we’ve got to that point.  It just kind of bothers me that we’ve got that.  Why do you think we need liquor at this event.

Scates explained that was a bigger existential question than he could answer for the council, but that in his experience, people expressed a want to enjoy a beer or glass of wine with dinner during the event and assured that there’s never been a case of anyone being overserved.

Council will take up closing South Main Cross at the next council meeting.  Scates will still need to secure the special event liquor use licensing.

Mayor Pollard, council, and City Attorney Greg Stewart recessed into executive session with no action to follow at 5:58pm.

  1. Outlaw
    April 17, 2024 at 5:40 pm

    I’m a teetotaler, but I really have issues when people let their personal feelings impede on someone else’s freedoms. I understand having an opinion, but does it really matter if someone drinks at an event? No. Just like it doesn’t matter if someone likes pork and dislikes chicken. All personal preference.

  2. Concerned
    April 18, 2024 at 7:28 am

    I’ve always thought that an aldermans job was to serve the people in their ward. It seems there is one of them that only votes his personal opinion. I think its time for term limits for Carmi council members. Most of them have been there way too long.

    • Outlaw
      April 18, 2024 at 8:55 am

      Yes! I agree! Personal opinions aside when it comes to someone elected to serve the people.


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