The City of Brazil will proceed with the renovation of a portion of Pinckley Street, even if Clay County refuses to go along for the ride.
The Clay County Board of Commissioners has scrapped a tentative inter-local agreement with the city to overhaul Pinckley Street -- the dividing line between Brazil and outlying Clay County -- between Batchelor and Hadley streets. The city initially sought the county's participation because the two entities share ownership of the road.
Brazil Mayor Tom Arthur said the renovation will proceed with or without the county's involvement but admitted his frustration with the commissioners' decision.
"They don't ever have any room for negotiation," he said. "It doesn't surprise me that they rejected it."
The commissioners signed off on the agreement at their March 6 session, but city council members declined to approve it at their meeting the following night, citing concerns over an out clause that would free the county of its $50,000 responsibility with 30 days notice.
Arthur said the city was only looking for approval from the Clay County Council, the body responsible for releasing county funds.
"All we asked for was that we wanted to see something that the county council signed," he said. "(And) the out clause was too easy."
But the board passed over the issue at their April 3 meeting -- "Our official action was that we didn't take action," Commissioner Daryl Andrews said-- and Commissioners President Charlie Brown confirmed that the county will not participate in the agreement.
"I gave them what they wanted the first time," he said, referring to the board's initial approval of the agreement. "I'm not going to re-do it."
The majority of the cost of the project will be covered by a half-million-dollar federal grant. Arthur said the city will cover the county's share-- $50,000-- with a certificate of deposit held by the Brazil Water Department.
Under the inter-local agreement, the city would have footed the other half of the $100,000 match amount plus engineering costs.