Palmyra City Council members agreed to take the next step toward a potential sales tax proposal for April to address storm water issues.

Palmyra City Council members agreed to take the next step toward a potential sales tax proposal for April to address storm water issues.

Council member Ken Sheputis proposed a 1/4-cent sales tax, which would be added to the current 1/4-cent capital improvement sales tax if approved. Fellow council members and city officials agreed to move ahead, and they authorized City Attorney Chase Hickman to draft an ordinance to be read and considered for approval. So far, plans engineered by Klingner and Associates for the city have not been started due to a lack of available funding.

“A 1/4 cent is better than nothing,” Sheputis said, noting that the tax would help get the project going one step at a time.

The council members will hear a reading of the ordinance language Hickman drafts twice before it would be approved. The proposal could then be a part of the April ballots.

In other business:

Council member Pam Behring suggested the council set quarterly meetings to better focus on long-term projects and ongoing improvements in the city. Sheputis suggested one-hour work sessions, and proposed a session to precede the next scheduled meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 20.

Chris Kempke, community engagement specialist and economic development specialist with the University of Missouri Extension, spoke with council members about the potential to develop working relationships pertaining to services like economic development. Mayor Loren Graham agreed with Kempke that a joint meeting would be beneficial between Director of Economic Development Sharon Gulick, Industrial Development Authority members and city council members.

Police Chief Eddie Bogue shared results from the speed trailer the department placed throughout town. He pointed out that the average speed of 23 MPH was in 25-MPH zones, indicating that reports of speeding motorists are the results of isolated incidents. During discussion with council members, officials agreed it would be effective to have a trailer, which flashes blue and red lights as a deterrent for speeding drivers, along with a discreet box that can be mounted out of sight on a pole to monitor driving speeds. Bogue said the boxes run between $3,000 and $3,500 and the trailers are $7,500 to $9,000, and he would pursue partial funding through the Blueprint grant.

trevor.mcdonald@courierpost.com