City Council discusses potential changes

Steven Barnum, Assistant News Editor

On Monday night, the Macomb City Council discussed purchasing new vehicles for the Macomb Police Department.

Two new vehicles, a Dodge Charger and a Ford Interceptor, will be added to the mix. They will be replacing three outgoing vehicles: a Chevy Tahoe, a Dodge Charger and a Ford Crown Victoria. Speaking on behalf of the Macomb Police Department was Police Chief Curt Barker.

“This is requesting authorization to make the purchase that was already approved in the budget,” Barker said.

The total price for both vehicles is $58,500, but after a trade with a local car dealership, Woodrum, the transaction will total just $49,000. Mayor Mike Inman emphasized that the money spent on the trade is coming from the police protective fund, which is a restricted fund and not from the city’s general fund. Action for the transaction will be on the agenda for the meeting on May 7.

Moving on to the next item on the agenda, it was announced that Sully’s Lawn Maintenance of Prairie City, Ill. was the low bidder and presumed winner for the “2018 Mowing Project.” Of the two bids that were submitted for the project, Sully’s was for $40 per hour and the higher bid was for $45 per hour.

The purpose of the program is to keep track of properties around town and make sure they are complying with lawn ordinances. If individuals repeatedly violate the ordinance, then they will be notified and possibly fined. At such properties, the contracted mowers will be sent to mow the grass so it complies with the ordinance.

“We have an ordinance that requires all grass and weeds to be six inches or less for a property,” Community Development Coordinator Ray Heitner said, “And particularly, this is enforced on residential properties so we monitor these conditions city-wide.”

Macomb spent nearly $9,000 on the program in 2017, which Heitner described as a “somewhat dry mowing season.” This year, the city can expect to see savings in the 20 percent range at a cost of around $7,000 to $7,500.

The third and final matter discussed was the amending of an ordinance that involves possession and consumption of alcohol at Spring Lake.

Specifically, visitors are allowed to consume alcohol in their cabins or rental homes, but not on the lake itself. Thus, alcohol is not completely prohibited on the property. While this ordinance is far from new, the town wants to make sure that the public is fully informed of the law. According to City Attorney Kristen Petrie, the solution is a simple.

“All persons (who register to rent a property) will be given the information regarding alcohol possession or consumption and responsibilities on the property,” Petrie said.

Inman concluded Monday night’s brief meeting by reminding the public to take advantage of the no-sticker required curbside pickup, which will end on May 3.