February 18, 2015 Edition

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Mayor Tinker discusses
city budget, future plans

Megan Heyl
Staff Writer

Hoxie Mayor Lanny Tinker gave his state of the city address during the Feb. 10 city council meeting. "I believe that your city government is working to the very best of our ability to reasonably deal with city problems," he said.

Tinker said there have been multiple state audits recently to assure the city is conducting business legally and a recent legislative audit yielded no findings or misappropriated funds.

"The best I can describe our financial condition is that in 2014 the city did not spend more money than it took in," Tinker said. Some sizable adjustments were needed in the 2015 budget to make up a projected shortage of $65,000. The largest adjustment was to move the radio room to the county dispatch, accounting for a $40,000 savings per year.

The beginning balances all met their minimum operating amounts except for the water fund. This is primarily due to infrastructure and water cost. The city should be able to start installing automatic water meters in the spring with funding received from an Arkansas Natural Resources loan.

"Our initial installation will be in the Brewer Addition in the northeast section of the city due to its poor drainage," Tinker said. The new meters can be read remotely so city employees can still get accurate readings even when weather prevents them from viewing the meter directly.

Tinker said it has been a balance between repairing what can be safely and cost effectively repaired versus what needs to be replaced, but every decision made has had the city's overall budget in mind.

Also at the meeting, Tinker informed the council:

  • that he has been in contact with BNSF officials in regards to the recent replacement of railroad ties at the Fourth and Lawrence street crossings. Tinker said the crossings are rough and debris has been left on the edge of the road. BNSF told Tinker it would be a couple of months before they would return to complete repairs. Citizens with concerns may call Joe Faust, director of public affairs with BNSF, at 817-867-6427.

  • the court date regarding the former Wayne's Grocery property was postponed until March. In preparation to list the property in the future, the city will hire an exterminator for the building, which has been setting vacant.

  • positive progress has been made on the sewer line at Northeast Kelly and Northeast Carolina due to the good weather. Tinker commended new water/wastewater superintendent Donnie Stewart for his work on the project.

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