City & County

Annual agreements on city board’s first 2022 meeting

By Joel Phelps
The Arkadelphian

The Arkadelphia City Board of Directors will have a light agenda Tuesday when it meets for the first time of the new year. 

On the table for consideration are several items of annual housekeeping resolutions, the first of which addresses procedural rules for conducting meetings.

Regarding those rules, City Manager Gary Brinkley addressed directors in a memo, noting there have been “a few editorial changes to reflect intent on the way we actually conduct business.”

Among those changes is how the public may address the board. Existing language in the board’s procedural rules already allows “any citizen” to address the board; the new language will read “a citizen” meaning only one person at a time may speak to the board and not yield his speaking time to others.

A second change to procedural rules comes at the request of City Attorney Ed McCorkle regarding adoption of an emergency clause when an ordinance is up for consideration. Without an emergency clause, directors must hear an ordinance be read three times prior to its adoption; the second and final reading may done by reading its title only.

Language added to the rules will state that the mayor asks the city clerk to read the emergency clause in the event one is requested. Brinkley said in the memo that the board already conforms to this practice.

Directors will then turn their attention to a resolution to clear a title blemish at the Clark County Industrial Park. McCorkle drafted the resolution after finding a “blemish” in a title when the board opted to purchase a title insurance policy for 1.5 acres in the industrial park for the city’s water department.

Courthouse records indicate a filing was made in 1989 that listed the city and county as second lien mortgagees to the property in the amount of $1. Neither the city nor the county hold any debt on the land, and there are no financial statements referencing any interest in the industrial park, Brinkley said. Further, he and McCorkle have talked with “numerous” people part of that 1989 process and are “comfortable” that neither party has a lien on the property.

The resolution up for adoption will clear the title so the city can move forward with buying the insurance policy. Brinkley urged directors in the memo to finalize the sale so that Arkadelphia Water Utilities can commence the building of the Gum Springs facility.

The board will also have some annual agreements to consider at Tuesday’s meeting.

The first is one with the Community Family Enrichment Center to operate the facility and address the needs of the community for $500 a month. The city funds provide emergency food and family support services for economically disadvantaged families and children in Arkadelphia.

In order to continue the agreement, the board must give its approval, along with a directive from the city manager.

Another agreement is with the Arkadelphia Council on Aging. Under that agreement, the city pays the ACA $6,000 annually, with $500 installments to help provide home-delivered meals to seniors in Arkadelphia.

The final agreement is with the Clark County Historical Association. That agreement also includes a monthly $500 payment from the city in order for the CCHA to provide history exhibits for citizens, as well as to maintain the museum. The city owns the train depot where the historical museum operates.

Tuesday’s meeting begins at 5:30 p.m. and will be held in the Town Hall Boardroom. The meetings are open to the public, and may be viewed on Suddenlink Channel 9 or via the livestream.