GF Council moves into new city hall
By Kelby Newcomb
The Green Forest City Council held its first meeting in the new City Hall on Tuesday, April 9.
Mayor Jerry Carlton said the city had worked out all of the remaining issues with the building and moved in recently.
“We’re glad to be in here,” he said, “and hopefully this building will serve the needs of the citizens of Green Forest for a long time.”
He said the old building would be demolished later in the week.
“The demolition of the old courthouse and city is scheduled for Thursday and Friday of this week,” Carlton said, “so by Saturday it should be gone. As soon as it’s gone, the contractor for this project will come in and finish our parking lot and the paving and curbing around it.”
During the water department update, Joe Tarvin with EGIS Engineering said the city received a letter from the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) a few months ago stating that the city had several overflows in its water system.
“They don’t want the overflows to continue,” Tarvin said, “and they required that the city provide a schedule for a corrective action plan to go in there and find the source of the inflows so the manholes don’t overflow.”
The first step of the schedule, he said, is to procure the professional services of a consulting engineer by July 15.
“We’ll be getting out advertisements for that,” Tarvin said, “and I’ll come up with a way to evaluate them based on experience and all that so you can choose someone.”
Project manager Frank Haren updated the council on Haren Construction Company’s progress with the wastewater plant expansion.
“We’re eight weeks ahead of schedule,” he said. “The crews are working on aggressively pouring concrete walls. We’re starting the base slab of the clarifier this week, and the under-drain piping is going underneath the clarifier. We’ll be pressure-testing those lines and then pouring the base slab.”
Haren concluded, “We’re excited to be here and thankful for the good weather.”
Carlton said the roof of the fire department has been repaired, but the leak caused some interior wall damage.
“Right now, fire chief Tim Howard is seeking a contractor to come in and do some investigative repairs,” he said, “to make sure there aren’t some black mold issues we need to tackle before we spruce [the department] up a little bit.”
The council voted to approve the 2017 City Audit and the 2018 Water and Wastewater Departments Audit. Carlton said there were no significant findings in the audits.
Carlton also announced that Janice Tanner had contacted him to officially resign from her position on the planning and zoning commission.
“The city appreciates all of her efforts over the last few years,” he said. “She took over her spot when Gary Tanner passed away. We appreciate everything she and her late husband have done. We’ll get some kind of recognition for her in the next few days.”
Carlton said he is still working on drafting a jake brake ordinance to present to the council for review. Suzanne Villines had come before the council at its March meeting and requested the aldermen consider making the city a “no jake brake” area.
The council’s next regular meeting is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, May 13, at City Hall.