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Paving plans on track as state releases money

Brookhaven officials appear to be a step closer to movingforward on a paving project for downtown streets.

Mayor Bob Massengill told aldermen Tuesday that funds for theproject were released by the state Sept. 30. He said that shouldallow the board to advertise for bids in two weeks.

“It looks like we’re moving forward,” Massengill said.

At the last board meeting, Massengill said the city hadaccumulated more than $511,000 in transportation funds, which mustbe matched by more than $102,000 in city funds. The paving projectwill involve several downtown streets, including those affected bythe Whitworth fire loop water line project a few years ago, andhandicap accessibility on city sidewalks.

In other business during the routine meeting, aldermen approvedtaking legal steps to get 27 overgrown lots around town cleanedup.

Building Inspector Steve Moreton said the property owners wouldbe given time to respond before the city would do the work andcharge the owners. He said ownership of some lots was in questionand could hamper cleanup efforts.

“I’m not saying every one of these is going to get cleaned up,but we’ll give it our best shot,” Moreton said.

Evins Henderson was reappointed and James Magee was appointed tothe Brookhaven Planning Commission. Moreton said both will servefour-year terms.

Two issues that came before the board Tuesday required morestudy by city officials.

One involved a request from Paul Jackson for the city to match$5,000-$150,000 in grant funds for renovation of the MilitaryMemorial Museum in the old railroad depot.

One estimate mentioned Tuesday night was $50,000 for therenovations, which could mean $25,000 each from the grant and thecity. Massengill said he would seek additional information fromJackson and possibly request that he make a presentation at thenext board meeting in two weeks.

Also, Heavenly Treasures owner John Chance spoke to the boardabout a fence being installed by a new business in the parking lotoff North Jackson Street.

Chance had concerns about the fence blocking access for firetrucks and for 18-wheeler delivery trucks to rear entrances of hisand other businesses. Massengill said he would look into thesituation and see what resolution could be reached regarding thefence.

In other business, aldermen declared Oct. 19 Brookhaven Tree ofLife Day. An 11 a.m. ceremony at the Kids’ Kingdom is planned tohighlight the importance of organ donation.

Instead of Oct. 31 – a Sunday – Massengill reminded residentsthat the city has set aside Saturday, Oct. 30 fortrick-or-treating. Aldermen have said that will be the policyanytime Halloween falls on a Sunday.

“We’re hoping that folks will comply with that,” Massengillsaid.

Finally, Ward Two Alderman Terry Bates requested an executivesession for personnel reasons. Bates did not provide any morespecific information on his reasons for seeking the closedmeeting.

The executive session was also held for reasons of pendinglitigation. After the closed meeting, aldermen took no action butdid vote to recess their meeting until Friday.