By BEN GRAFTON
At the City Council meeting of Aug. 9, Becky Buxton, of the Freeport Town Planters, addressed the Council saying the Planters, which were organized in 1991 with the encouragement of the mayor and Council, were proud that the mayor and Council have such interest in the town and its people. She said the Planters were, “taken aback” when the Blount House, which they have adopted as their home, was vandalized. She said, however, that the steps taken by the city to tighten control over access to the Blount House are a burden to the Planters and she asked for keys to the new Blount House locks so that the Planters have ready access there. Mayor Mickey Marse responded saying that the city did not know what was in the Planters’ storage building on the property and that the city would like to have a key to that building. To solve the mutual access problem an exchange of keys was proposed and approved by the Council.
In other matters taken up at the brief business session:
City Attorney Clayton Adkinson presented the second reading of an ordinance to annex the Gillispie property of five acres, more or less, off of Bay Loop Road East into the city. The Council approved the ordinance.
City Clerk Robin Haynes opened the subject of the plans and specifications package for the solar panel to be installed at the Sports Complex. Consultant Bob Jones said that the package contained some word processor mistakes that must be corrected before submission, but since the “drop dead date” for completion of the project was April 1, 2012 sending the package in for approval was needed. The Council approved the package subject to editing to correct the errors.
Engineer Cliff Knauer reported that discussions with utility companies were underway for the Wagon Wheel water well project.
Praestare Engineering submitted a written report to the Council with highlights of work on projects under their management. These included statements that interior inspections of water tanks were to begin on Aug. 16; that construction is underway on the well house for No. 2 water well; that the permit for relocation of the Shipyard Road lift station has been submitted to the Department of Environmental Protection and project materials have been ordered by the contractor; that work is progressing on the Waste Water Treatment Plant upgrade; and that plans for the relocation of utility lines along the right of way for the U.S. 331 widening project have been submitted to the Florida Department of Transportation for review.
Haynes said that she would have enough material for the second budget workshop the week of Aug. 15 and she asked the Council to set a workshop date. The Council approved the request by scheduling a workshop for 7 p.m. on Aug. 18.
Councilwoman Elizabeth Brannon reported that legislation survey forms have been received from the League of Cities office. She asked the Council to please review the city’s needs and feedback ideas for legislative action in 2012.