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MINUTES OF A REGULAR MEETING

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MINUTES OF A REGULAR MEETING OF THE MAYOR AND BOARD OF ALDERMEN OF THE CITY OF RUSTON HELD ON MONDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2010, AT 5:30 P.M., IN COUNCIL CHAMBERS/ COURTROOM, 2ND FLOOR, CITY HALL, 401 NORTH TRENTON, RUSTON, LOUISIANA
A regular meeting of the Mayor and Board of Aldermen of the City of Ruston was held Monday, November 1, 2010, at 5:30 p.m., in the Council Chambers/ Courtroom, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 401 North Trenton, Ruston, Louisiana. A quorum was present, notice having been duly served. Mayor Dan Hollingsworth, Aldermen Jedd Lewis, Elmore Mayfield, Jim Pearce, Levell Thurman and Alderwoman Marie Riggs were present. Mayor Dan Hollingsworth called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m. The invocation was delivered by Alderman Jim Pearce during the Section 8 Board meeting held prior to the Council meeting.
I.ADOPT:
A.AGENDA.
Alderman Jim Pearce made a motion, seconded by Alderman Elmore Mayfield, to adopt the agenda as presented. Mayor Hollingsworth asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote.
B.MINUTES OF OCTOBER 4, 2010, REGULAR MEETING.
Alderman Levell Thurman made a motion, seconded by Alderman Jim Pearce, to approve the Minutes of the October 4, 2010, Regular Council meeting. Mayor Hollingsworth asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote.
II.ADMINISTRATION:
A.RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, AUTHORIZING CITY TO PURCHASE PROPERTY. (JAMES D. LORD, ET UX)
Lewis Love was present to explain that the property is needed by the City. Motion was made by Alderman Elmore Mayfield and seconded by Alderwoman Marie Riggs to adopt the resolution authorizing the purchase of an approximately 1.278 acre tract from James D. Lord, et ux. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 707 OF 2010)
B. RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, AUTHORIZING CITY TO PURCHASE PROPERTY. (RANDY L. EWING, ET UX)
Lewis Love explained that a turn lane at the corner of U.S. Highway 80 and U.S. Hwy 167 is needed. Motion was made by Alderman Jedd Lewis and seconded by Alderman Jim Pearce to adopt the resolution authorizing the purchase of an approximately .346 tract from Randy L. Ewing, et ux. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 708 OF 2010)
C. ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, AUTHORIZING CITY OF RUSTON, LOUISIANA TO ACQUIRE PROPERTY AND TO INSTITUTE EXPROPRIATION ACTIONS NECESSARY FOR CONSTRUCTION AND COMPLETION OF INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENTS TO GLENDALE LIFT STATION ELIMINATION PROJECT IN THE CITY OF RUSTON, LOUISIANA. Lewis Love explained that this resolution authorizes the acquisition of property necessary to facilitate the construction and completion of Glendale Lift Station Elimination Project and take any expropriation actions necessary and useful. Motion was made by Alderman Elmore Mayfield and seconded by Alderman Jim Pearce. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 709 OF 2010)
D. ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, AUTHORIZING CITY OF RUSTON, LOUISIANA TO ACQUIRE PROPERTY AND TO INSTITUTE EXPROPRIATION ACTIONS NECESSARY FOR CONSTRUCTION AND COMPLETION OF INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENTS TO LEWIS STREET PROJECT IN THE CITY OF RUSTON, LOUISIANA.
Lewis Love explained that this resolution authorizes the acquisition of property necessary to facilitate the construction and completion of the Lewis Street Project and institute any expropriation actions necessary and useful. Motion was made by Alderman Elmore Mayfield and seconded by Alderman Levell Thurman to adopt the resolution. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 710 OF 2010).
III. SECTION 8:
A. ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, APPROVING THE ANNUAL PLAN AND THE 5-YEAR AGENCY PLAN FOR THE CITY OF RUSTON SECTION 8 HOUSING CHOICE VOUCHER PROGRAM.
Emmett Gibbs was present and explained that the Section 8 Board had met prior to the Council meeting and unanimously recommended approval of the resolution which is required by HUD. Motion was made by Alderman Jedd Lewis and seconded by Alderman Jim Pearce to adopt the resolution. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 711 OF 2010)
IV. LIGHT AND POWER:
A. ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, AUTHORIZING CITY TO ENTER INTO PROFESSIONAL SERVICES AGREEMENT WITH UTILIWORKS, LLC, FOR SMART GRID IMPLEMENTATION SERVICES. Darrell Caraway explained that this resolution authorizes the City to enter into an agreement with Utiliworks, LLC, for Smart Grid Implementation Services which includes required Department of Energy reporting and project management. Motion was made by Alderman Jim Pearce and seconded by Alderman Jedd Lewis to adopt the resolution. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 712 OF 2010)
B. ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, AUTHORIZING SALE OF DAMAGED TRANSFORMERS AS SURPLUS MOVABLE PROPERTY. Darrell Caraway explained that this resolution would authorize the City to sell damaged transformers as surplus property. Motion was made by Alderman Jedd Lewis and seconded by Alderman Elmore Mayfield to adopt the resolution. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 713 OF 2010)
V. WATER UTILITIES:
A. ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, AUTHORIZING CITY TO ENTER INTO A PROFESSIONAL SERVICES AGREEMENT WITH THE RILEY COMPANY OF LOUISIANA, INC., FOR ENGINEERING SERVICES RELATED TO EAST WOODHAVEN DRAINAGE IMPROVEMENTS PROJECT. Lewis Love explained that this resolution would authorize an agreement with Riley Company for engineering services related to the East Woodhaven Drainage Improvements Project. Motion was made by Alderman Jedd Lewis and seconded by Alderman Levell Thurman to adopt the resolution. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 714 OF 2010)
VI. PUBLIC WORKS:
A. ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, AUTHORIZING THE SALE OF SCRAP MATERIALS AS SURPLUS MOVABLE PROPERTY.
Lewis Love stated that the resolution authorized the sale of scrap materials as surplus. Motion was made by Alderman Levell Thurman and seconded by Alderman Jim Pearce to adopt the resolution authorizing the sale of scrap materials as surplus. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 715 OF 2010)
B. ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. ____ OF 2010, AUTHORIZING CITY TO ENTER INTO CONTRACT FOR CONSTRUCTION OF OAKDALE AND TAYLOR STREET BRIDGE REPLACEMENTS. Lewis Love explained that this resolution would authorize the City to enter into contract with the lowest responsive, responsible bidder for all work described in the construction plans and specifications for the Oakdale and Taylor Street Bridge Replacements Project. He added that the low bidder appeared to be Mabry Company. A motion was made by Alderman Levell Thurman and seconded by Alderman Elmore Mayfield to adopt the resolution. The Mayor asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 716 OF 2010)
VII. PLANNING & ZONING:
A. PUBLIC HEARING.
Jim Hays and Pat Doane were present to discuss the matter. Jim Hays said that Case No. 1068 is an application for a conditional use permit from Ronny Walker and KDUB, LLC, to convert the old gas station at the southeast corner of California Avenue and Adams Street into a 3-unit apartment building. He reported that the Zoning Commission had reviewed the applicant’s first submission at their regular August 2010 meeting and the case was postponed for a month so the applicant could provide additional information. Hays added that at the September 2010 meeting, the applicant requested and was granted another month to secure additional information and the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development permit for his application. Hays further stated that Walker’s permit application to the LaDOTD was approved and issued on September 20, 2010 and included in the re-submitted application, along with a revised site plan. Hays reported that the residential neighborhood on Adams Street is part of the Stubbs Addition and the second oldest subdivision in Ruston’s core. He said the residents of this small neighborhood have expressed opposition to the conversion of the commercial property to any non-commercial use. Hays reported that the Zoning Commission reviewed elements of the Conditional Use Permit application in a public hearing at their October 18, 2010, meeting with a 3 to 2 vote to recommend approval by the Board of Aldermen with the condition that the development must be substantially in conformance with the approved site plans submitted as part of the conditional use permit. There was a lengthy discussion about the pros and cons of approving the application. Alderman Mayfield said he was concerned that if the council approved the permit, it would set a precedent for more apartment buildings in the area. Alderman Pearce said he was encouraged that they were not tearing down the old service station but re-doing the building. Mayor Hollingsworth called for a public hearing at 6:10 p.m. The following came forward to comment concerning the matter: Carl McCarter of Grambling (opposed); Joe Walker of 606 East California; Tommie Woods, Vernon Street and a member of Pilgrim’s Rest Church, (opposed); Sharon Mayfield, 620 Adams (opposed); Kourtney Keim, KDUB, LLC, (wants to restore and convert to apartments); Nita Belle (?) 618 Adams, (opposed); Cassidy Keim (in favor of); Mrs. Lewis, 804 Groveland and a church member (opposed); Drew Edwards, J.P. Morgan Chase in Monroe (in favor of); Josie Mayfield (opposed). The Mayor closed the hearing at 6:28 p.m., and called for final consideration by the Aldermen.
B. CONSIDER FOR ACTION CASE NO. 1068 – APPLICATION FOR CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT TO ALLOW CREATION OF THREE APARTMENTS IN AN EXISTING BUILDING.
Case No: 1068
Application: Ronny Walker and KDUB, LLC
Location: 609 West California Avenue at Adams Street Alderman Jim Pearce made a motion to approve the application. The motion failed for lack of a second. A motion to deny the application was made by Alderman Elmore Mayfield and seconded by Alderman Levell Thurman. The motion to deny the application passed with four votes in favor of and one opposed, being Alderman Jim Pearce.
C. PUBLIC HEARING.
Jim Hays stated that Mr. and Mrs. Jody Wood had filed an application for a conditional use permit to open a boat dealership at 600 East Georgia. He said the Zoning Commission had reviewed elements of the conditional use permit application in a public hearing at their October 18, 2010, meeting and voted unanimously to recommend Council approval subject to the following conditions:
1. Project must be completed by June 1, 2011;
2. The development must be substantially in conformance with the approved site plans submitted as part of the conditional use permit;
3. Must maintain a southern buffer according to City Code requirements; and,
4. Must maintain parking spaces according to City Code requirements. Mayor Hollingsworth called for a public hearing at 6:38 p.m. Having no one from the audience to comment, the Mayor closed the hearing at 6:38 p.m., and called for final consideration by the Aldermen.
D. CONSIDER FOR ACTION CASE NO. 1073 – APPLICATION FOR CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT FOR A PROPOSED BOAT DEALERSHIP IN AN EXISTING BUILDING.
Case No: 1073
Application: Mr. and Mrs. Joseph (Jody) Wood
Location: 600 East Georgia Avenue at S. Farmerville Street
Alderman Jedd Lewis made a motion, seconded by Alderman Elmore Mayfield, to approve the request. The motion passed by unanimous vote.
VIII. CODE ENFORCEMENT: REQUEST PERMISSION TO START THE PROPERTY CONDEMNATION PROCESS AS REQUIRED BY ORDINANCE FOR THE STRUCTURES LOCATED AT THE FOLLOWING ADDRESSES:
Address:
Owner:
427 S. Farmerville Deborah Andrews
307 E. Arizona Avenue
A. Kennon Goff, III
1203 Pecan Roy Mayberry
1307 Dunn
Andrew Mattex
Mark Joiner recommended that the listed properties be demolished, removed or improved to meet current Building Code and also requested permission to start the property condemnation process on these structures. Joiner stated that all property owners have been notified. After he read aloud the listed properties, a motion was made by Alderman Elmore Mayfield and seconded by Alderman Levell Thurman to approve Joiner’s recommendations. Mayor Hollingsworth asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote.
B. PUBLIC HEARING FOR THE PROPERTY OWNERS OF 902 SOUTH JONES CONCERNING ABATEMENT OF THE SUBSTANDARD STRUCTURES LOCATED THERE.
Mark Joiner reviewed the history related to structure(s) at 902 South Jones and reported that an electrical repair permit was issued to property owners on October 25. Joiner recommended that the council grant an additional 90 days for completion and if the owner fails or refuses to comply with the order within the timeframe allowed, then the City may proceed with the demolition of the structure with all costs billed to the owner. Mayor Hollingsworth called for a public hearing at 6:51 p.m. The following came forward to comment concerning the matter: Mary Mustin (property owner), Berkley Harris and Mary Mayfield (daughter of Mary Mustin). The Mayor closed the public hearing at 6:57 p.m., and called for final consideration by the Aldermen.
C. DISCUSS AND TAKE APPROPRIATE ACTION ON THE ABATEMENT OF THE SUBSTANDARD STRUCTURES LOCATED AT 902 SOUTH JONES.
Alderman Elmore Mayfield encouraged the property owners to move quickly with the improvements of the property and asked Mark Joiner to monitor the progress. After discussion, a motion was made by Alderman Levell Thurman and seconded by Alderman Elmore Mayfield to approve Joiner’s recommendation and proceed with the appropriate action. The motion passed by unanimous vote.
D. PUBLIC HEARING FOR THE PROPERTY OWNERS OF 903 GILMAN CONCERNING ABATEMENT OF THE SUBSTANDARD STRUCTURES LOCATED THERE.
Mark Joiner reported that the Council had previously voted to accept a recommendation to demolish, remove or improve the structure(s) at 903 Gilman and to start the property condemnation process. He reported that the property owners appear to be Cleveland Lewis, Geneva Lewis, Letha Lewis, Jarvia Lewis Wheeler, Gloria Dunn Burks Evans and Doretha Smith Cravens and that he had been unable to contact them. He further stated that attorney, Forrest Moegle had been appointed to represent the absentee owners in the proceeding. Mr. Moegle was unable to be present for the hearing, but sent a letter which stated that he had placed a legal notice in the Ruston Daily Leader and had been contacted by the following interested persons: Linda Lewis, Carolyn Lewis Pritchett, Brandon Evans, Michael Evans, Evelyn Cooper, Lovie Burks, Shirley Burks, Frederick Burks and Gary Cravin who were informed about the hearing. He also instructed them to contact Mark Joiner should they have any questions or concerns. Joiner stated that the heirs are in the process of remodeling the structure and recommended that the Council order the structure condemned and set a timeframe of ninety (90) days for the owners to complete their improvements; and, if the owners fail or refuse to comply with the order within the timeframe allowed, then the City may proceed with the demolition of the structure with all costs billed to the owner.
Mayor Hollingsworth called for a public hearing at 7:00 p.m. Linda Lewis, one of the heirs, stated that they are in the process of remodeling and needed to secure a permit. The Mayor closed the public hearing at 7:02 p.m., and called for final consideration by the Aldermen.
E. DISCUSS AND TAKE APPROPRIATE ACTION ON THE ABATEMENT OF THE SUBSTANDARD STRUCTURES LOCATED AT 903 GILMAN.
After discussion, a motion was made by Alderman Levell Thurman and seconded by Alderman Elmore Mayfield to approve Joiner’s recommendations and proceed with the appropriate action. The motion passed by unanimous vote.
F. PUBLIC HEARING FOR THE PROPERTY OWNERS OF 708 JENKINS CONCERNING ABATEMENT OF THE SUBSTANDARD STRUCTURES LOCATED THERE.
Mark Joiner reported that the Council had previously voted to accept a recommendation to demolish, remove or improve the structure(s) at 708 Jenkins and to start the property condemnation process. He reported that the property owners appear to be Cleveland Lewis, Geneva Lewis, Letha Lewis, Jarvia Lewis Wheeler, Gloria Dunn Burks Evans and Doretha Smith Cravens, but his office has been unable to locate any of them. He further stated that attorney, Forrest Moegle has been appointed to represent the absentee owners in the proceedings. Mr. Moegle was unable to attend the hearing, but sent a letter which stated that he had placed a legal notice in the Ruston Daily Leader and had been contacted by Linda Lewis, Carolyn Lewis Pritchett, Brandon Evans, Michael Evans, Evelyn Cooper, Lovie Burks, Shirley Burks, Frederick Burks and Gary Cravin and had informed them about the hearing with instructions to contact Mark Joiner with any questions or concerns. Joiner stated that the heirs were tearing the house down, but that they needed to secure a permit. He further recommended giving thirty (30) days for the owners to demolish the structure, and if the owners fail or refuse to comply with the order within the timeframe allowed, then the City may proceed with the demolition of the structure with all costs billed to the owner. Mayor Hollingsworth called for a public hearing at 7:05 p.m. Linda Lewis, one of the heirs, stated that they are tearing the house down. The Mayor closed the public hearing at 7:06 p.m., and called for final consideration by the Aldermen.
G. DISCUSS AND TAKE APPROPRIATE ACTION ON THE ABATEMENT OF THE SUBSTANDARD STRUCTURES LOCATED AT 708 JENKINS. After discussion, a motion was made by Alderman Elmore Mayfield and seconded by Alderman Levell Thurman to approve Joiner’s recommendations and proceed with the appropriate action. The motion passed by unanimous vote.
H. PUBLIC HEARING FOR THE PROPERTY OWNERS OF 1008 TAYLOR CONCERNING ABATEMENT OF THE SUBSTANDARD STRUCTURES LOCATED THERE.
Mark Joiner reported that the Council had previously voted to accept a recommendation to demolish, remove or improve the structure(s) at 1008 Taylor and to start the property condemnation process. He reported that the property owner appears to be Sara Sims and the City has been unable to locate her and thus, attorney, Forrest Moegle had been appointed to represent the absentee owner in the proceeds. Joiner added that Moegle was unable to attend the hearing, but had written a letter which stated that Sara Sims, absentee owner, is deceased and he had left phone messages with apparent heirs, Huey Sims and Queen Coleman, informing them of the public hearing and instructing them to contact Mark Joiner with any questions or concerns. Joiner stated that the heirs want the City to demolish the structure. Joiner recommended fifteen (15) days demolish the structure with all costs billed to the property owners. Mayor Hollingsworth called for a public hearing at 7:08 p.m. Having no one from the audience to comment, the Mayor closed the public hearing at 7:08 p.m., and called for final consideration by the Aldermen.
I. DISCUSS AND TAKE APPROPRIATE ACTION ON THE ABATEMENT OF THE SUBSTANDARD STRUCTURES LOCATED AT 1008 TAYLOR.
After discussion, a motion was made by Alderman Elmore Mayfield and seconded by Alderman Levell Thurman to approve Joiner’s recommendations and proceed with the appropriate action. The motion passed by unanimous vote.
IX. FINANCE:
A. PUBLIC HEARING.
Emmett Gibbs was present to explain the ordinance. Mayor Hollingsworth called for a public hearing at 7:10 p.m. Having no one from the audience to comment, the Mayor closed the public hearing at 7:10 p.m., and called for final consideration by the Aldermen.
B. CONSIDER ORDINANCE NO. ____ OF 2010, ADOPTING AMENDMENTS FOR THE PERIOD APRIL 1, 2010, THROUGH SEPTEMER 30, 2010, TO THE ANNUAL BUDGET OF REVENUES AND EXPENDITURES FOR THE FISCAL YEAR OCTOBER 1, 2009, THROUGH SEPTEMBER 30, 2010, FOR THE CITY OF RUSTON, LOUISIANA. Alderman Jim Pearce made a motion, seconded by Alderman Elmore Mayfield, to adopt the ordinance. The title of the ordinance was read, a roll call vote was taken and the following result was had:
YEA: ALDERMAN JEDD LEWIS
ALDERMAN ELMORE MAYFIELD
ALDERMAN JIM PEARCE
ALDERWOMAN MARIE RIGGS
ALDERMAN LEVELL THURMAN
NAY: NONE
ABSENT: NONE
The motion passed by unanimous vote. (ORDINANCE NO 1603 OF 2010) Mayor Hollingsworth introduced the City’s new Controller, Kathleen Dupree, of Calhoun, Louisiana.
C. ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. ___ OF 2010, ACKNOWLEDGING PRESENTATION OF THE 2009-2010 LOUISIANA AUDIT COMPLIANCE QUESTIONNAIRE FOR THE CITY OF RUSTON. Emmett Gibbs was present to discuss the resolution saying that it was required by the Legislative Auditor’s Office. Motion was made by Alderman Jedd Lewis and seconded by Alderman Jim Pearce to adopt the resolution acknowledging the presentation of the Audit Compliance Questionnaire. Mayor Hollingsworth asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote. (RESOLUTION NO. 717 OF 2010)
D. INTRODUCE ORDINANCE NO. ____ OF 2010, PROVIDING THE DATE, TIMIE AND PLACE OF REGULAR MEETINGS OF THE BOARD OF ALDERMEN OF THE CITY OF RUSTON, LOUISIANA FOR CALENDAR YEAR 2011. The ordinance was introduced by Alderman Jim Pearce.
E. APPROVE THE FOLLOWING BUDGET AMENDMENTS FOR BUDGET YEAR OCTOBER 1, 2010, THROUGH SEPTEMBER 30, 2011:
1.From: General Fund – Fund Balance <150,000> To: General Fund – Solid Waste Dept: 150,000
Capital 140122 5810
2.From: General Fund – Fund Balance <130,000>
To: General Fund – Street Dept: 130,000
Capital 140121 5812
Emmett Gibbs was present to explain each budget amendment. A motion was made by Alderman Elmore Mayfield and seconded by Alderman Levell Thurman to approve the listed budget amendments. Mayor Hollingsworth asked for comments from the audience and there were none. The motion passed by unanimous vote.
X. ADJOURN MEETING:
There being no further business, the meeting of the Mayor and Board of Aldermen was adjourned at 7:12 p.m.
December 6, 2010
APPROVED
ATTEST:
EMMETT GIBBS, CLERK
DAN HOLLINGSWORTH, MAYOR
1td:December 10, 2010

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