The Webb City Council is talking about how to spend the $1.78 million that’s left in the city’s ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) fund.
At their June 26 meeting, council members agreed to spend a majority of the remaining ARPA funds to improve the city’s infrastructure – as opposed to using it to build a community center.
It was felt that if the council chooses to proceed with a community center it could be financed with a bond issue, possibly mixed with private funding.
During that meeting, Jim Dawson (4th Ward) urged expansion of the city’s water supply so the city won’t have to purchase water from Missouri American.
Reactivating the well under the water tower by drilling it deeper is a project that’s already underway.
City Administrator Carl Francis proposed $600,000 for a new well on the northeast side of the city. The newest well, said to be successful because it’s pumping 400 gallons per minute, is on the northwest side of the city.
He also proposed $200,000 to drill in another location for future use.
In addition to the $500,000 in the budget for this summer’s paving projects, the council has agreed to add $150,000 in ARPA funds. Francis said Blevins Asphalt Construction is expected to start those paving projects at any time now.
The council approved a motion to pave over the gravel parking lot south of the pavilion in King Jack Park. Several board members of the Webb City Farmers Market were present to confirm their financial support for a portion of the project cost, which Francis estimates will be $80,000 to $90,000.
Mayor Lynn Ragsdale complimented the nonprofit organization for having “skin in the game.”
Tracy Craig, financial administrator, is preparing a report of ARPA receipts and spending for the council’s July 24 meeting.
The city received its first ARPA funding in 2021 and then received a second payment in 2022 for a total of $2,472,059.
There’s no hurry to decide what to spend the remaining ARPA funds for. Under the federal act, entities have until the end of 2024 to allocate the funds and the end of 2026 to actually spend them.
A portion of the ARPA funds spent so far has paid for an engineering study to determine the feasibility of a retention pond on the north side of Highway 171 near Powell Drive to alleviate flooding in the Golf Road area. And the council had previously agreed to fund the entire project with ARPA funds.
However, Francis reported that the engineers determined the retention pond would only halt 10 – 14% of the storm water affecting the Golf Road area. On top of that, the city would have to buy the property. It was decided that the project would not be a sound investment.
The council on June 26 approved Ragsdale’s appointment of Brad Baker to fill the 3rd Ward seat that was vacated recently when Jonathan Shull resigned because he’s moving out of the city.
Shull was reelected in April, so Baker’s term will last until April 2005.
The council accepted a $10,500 bid from Pryor Track & Hoe Co. to replace the 60 worst ties that support the streetcar track in King Jack Park.
Maintenance of the track is an annual effort to keep it reliable.
In other action, the council accepted on first reading a council bill renewing the 20-year municipal franchise agreement with Spire. Changes are said to be minimal.
Spire pays the city 5% of its annual gross receipts.
A request has been made for the city to annex 38.78 acres on North Madison Street between the Stadium View subdivision and Center Creek 201 Wastewater Treatment Plant.
The proposal has been advanced by the Planning and Zoning Commission to the next step, a public hearing in conjunction with the July 24 city council meeting.
Mads Gisselbaek, of MTG Property Inc., Scottsdale, Ariz., is the applicant. Once annexed, he says he wants the property to be rezoned R-1 (single-family residential).