Skateboards, taxis discussed by City Council

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Issues with skateboarders, noise, and paving machines came across the desk of the Brazil Common Council in their Tuesday evening meeting.

Mayor Tom Arthur called the meeting into action at 7 p.m. After roll call and approval of minutes, a brief discussion was held on a bus or taxi service in Brazil. Arthur said a taxi service would be more feasible because of the workings of bus companies, adding that he spoke to a party interested in bringing a taxi service to Brazil. He said he would do some more research and bring his findings to the council at next month's meeting.

It was noted that Park Board President Ruthann Jeffries had a problem with skateboarders at the band shell at Forest Park. Arthur said that Jeffries claimed that they ignored, and at times defaced, the signs. He discussed the possibility of an ordainance to the board, suggesting that the first offense fine be $100 to "send a message". There was no argument to the board and Arthur asked Attorney Joe Trout to draft an ordainance for next month.

The shelter dedicated to Kenny Crabb, located by the softball field at Forest Park, has been hit by softballs during practice recently. Arthur said that Cinergy provided the town with a $350 grant to put a net up around the shelter, protecting it from future damage.

The city's noise ordinance was briefly discussed. Arthur asked about the possibility of making the ordinance effective 24 hours a day, a move the board agreed with. Trout was asked to draft the changes.

Fire Chief Tobey Archer told the board that the Brazil Fire Department had attended an Air Evac training event, teaching them how to clear a landing spot, among other topics.

Police Chief Mark Loudermilk then gave a brief report to the council. He discussed the car recently found in the lake at Craig Park, noting that the city police have had some trouble finding who the car belonged to.

"We haven't had much luck," he said. The car could have been in the lake longer than 20 years.

Loudermilk also discussed the use ot a Homeland Security grant and the good feedback he had received on the plaques for retired police officers and their widows.

Ordinance 6-1993 was brought before the council. Basically, an amendment would increase penalties for water reconnect fees charged to those who lost service due to non payment. A couple of options were discussed before Arthur suggested a $35 increase each time a service had to be reconnected.

Jason Johnston of Air Evac then took the floor to ask the board about the purchase of memberships for city employees. Johnston said that the company offered an annual rate of $10 per employee plus a $100 site administration fee. This plan would cover all employees when they were working on city business. Additionally, the company would offer a $10 discount on the purchase of family plans by city employees.

Arthur said that money was an issue in the proposition.

"I don't feel the city's fiscally ready to tackle that extra $1,200," he said. He did mention the possibility of allocating funds for the service in next year's budget.

Discussion was held over a new pothole patching machine for the city. Two companies expressed interest in selling the city a machine at the meeting. After some talk, the board told both companies to submit bids in the interest of fairness.

The next meeting of the Brazil Common Council will be May 11 at 7 p.m. at City Hall. The public is invited.

The Brazil Board of Public Works and Safety also met Tuesday night. The board discussed Police Chief Mark Loudermilk's disciplinary action against Officer Christopher Blila, voting to accept his recommendation.

Arthur declined to comment on Blila's actions or Loudermilk's punishment, as advised by Trout.

The board also discussed the purchase of a new truck for the Water Treatment Plant. The vehicle was purchased from Bob Bowen Ford.

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