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City to receive #036;1.2 million for airport project

Mayor Dexter McLendon brought good news to the City of Greenville this week -- news to the tune of $1.2 million.

At Monday's regular meeting of the Greenville City Council, McLendon reported that the Alabama Department of Transportation (DOT) has agreed to help fund the expansion of the runway at the Mac Crenshaw Memorial Airport by allocating $1.2 million toward the relocation of Airport Road.

&uot;When we started this program, we applied for a grant from the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration). We have not yet received the grant, but we should receive it in August,&uot; said McLendon. &uot;But, I received a letter from Mack Roberts of the DOT stating that the state is willing to give us $1.2 million to move Airport Road 0.7 mile to the west.&uot;

The runway will be extended from 3,800 feet to 5,500 feet, allowing corporate jets to land thus enhancing the city's industrial image.

&uot;The original project included a five percent match from the state and five percent local match from the city, which for us was $100,000. We owe a great deal to Dr. John Eagerton (Chief of the Alabama Aeronautics Bureau), Mr. Roberts and Gov. Siegelman who were all behind this project,&uot; said McLendon.

Because of the new funding, council members voted to withdraw acceptance of the DOT's original five percent match of $5,910 for the first phase of the project. The council also accepted the environmental assessment and engineering plan, referred to as Option 6, for relocation of the road.

The council also voted to authorize a 10 percent match the airport project.

&uot;This new airport is really going to help economic development of the city,&uot; stated McLendon.

A resolution was also passed at Monday night's meeting authorizing McLendon to commit city funds for a portion of cost required to reinstall a traffic light at Bolling and Commerce Streets, which is near the Chamber of Commerce.

&uot;Two weeks after I took office, I asked Rep. Charles Newton and Sen. Wendell Mitchell to work with me in order to get the light reinstalled that never got replaced after the downtown renovation was completed,&uot; said McLendon. &uot;It has taken this long to get an answer.&uot;

To get the new traffic light, the city will be required to pay one-third of the installation cost because the street runs into a state highway, so the city and state must share the cost. The total cost to the city is estimated at $20,000.

A resolution was also passed on Monday night that will establish a city policy regarding liability from damage caused by uncontrolled balls at city sports facilities.

&uot;People get their windshields bustedand think the city is responsible. We need to adopt a policy stating the city's position,&uot; said McLendon.

Councilman James Lewis was concerned whether allowing visitors to the sports complex to park in these areas while also having signs posted stating the city would not be liable was legal.

&uot;Posting the signs is fine,&uot; said Richard Hartley, attorney for the City of Greenville.

In other new business, the council approved:

a resolution authorizing the installation of a street light at 1595 Pineapple Hwy and addition of said street lighting to the city's billing with Alabama Power Company;

a resolution authorizing bids to be let for paving of the softball complex service road and employee parking area;

a resolution authorizing the city horiticulturist to spend up to $6,000 for completion of landscaping at the softball complex.

In other news, the council approved the following expenditures:

$2,236.29 to Southern Sand and Gravel to fill warning track on three softball complex fields;

$2,720 to Bobby Blackmon Construction for labor to lay 1360 linear feet of ribbon curb;

$1,134 to Stevens Concrete for approximately 18 cubic yards of curb mix for city softball complex;

$500 to Scott Callen Sand and Gravel for the softball complex service road and employee parking lot clay gravel base;

$1,800 to Southern Sand and Gravel for a hauling fee to transport clay gravel base;

$1,459.20 to Skipper Construction Company for labor to form and finish access road/walkway from employee parking area to main building at softball complex;

$1,506.70 for 265 cubic yards regular concrete mix for access road/walkway at softball complex;

$2,500 to Barrett Industrial parks for public works forklift battery.