The Lula City Council is expected to approve the qualifying fees at its Thursday meeting for candidates seeking election to the city council.
An expected fee of $36, based on council salary, as well as the qualifying dates, will be set at the Jan. 20 meeting. The regular council meeting, normally held on Monday, was pushed to Thursday due to the federal holiday at the beginning of the week
Also expected to be decided at Thursday’s meeting are the committee selections and signatories for funds. According to city manager, Dennis Bergin, there are not any expected changes to which council members are serving on committees and the financial signatories will remain the same. The current signatories for the city are Mayor Milton Turner, Vicky Chambers and Lamb Griffin.
The council will also receive an update about the waste water treatment plant. Applications are still being accepted for the Class III assistant operator after previous applicants did not meet the city’s requirements. The plant is currently being put through its paces in a “shakedown” mode where Bergin said everything would be running and some minor issues are expected as the operators become familiar with the plant. The project is currently still projected as under budget, but the city does have a few more details to work through before it is finalized.
In updates to city affairs, city officials stated during the work session, the snow and ice that blanketed the area last week did affect the roads and certain areas of the city.
“We are doing the best we can, with what we have,” Bergin said, adding that the city doesn’t have the specific equipment to deal with the large amounts of snow and ice that covered the city, but neither did other area towns. The mayor and Bergin thanked residents who volunteered to assist the city employees with clearing roads.
Along with the equipment, the city’s backhoe, a 1986 model, is in need of repair. An estimated cost to fix the equipment is around $9,000 with multiple problems needing repair. The council members may also consider purchasing a used backhoe in addition to repairing the current one, as the city’s needs are expanding.
During the citizen comment period, a concern was raised about a community service line on Belton Manor Drive which is a private service line to house along that road. The city’s insurance liablity coverage won’t allow the city to step in and assist in fixing the issues with the line, as the line also does not meet city standards. According to city officials, the community being serviced by the line would have to be in complete compliance, upgrading the line to city standards at which time the city could consider stepping in. The main issue with the line is sewage backups seemingly connected to blockages along the line.