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Board OKs $3,000 in landscape work

Monticello City Hall is getting a facelift.

Town alderman agreed Tuesday night to a proposal by the LawrenceCounty Garden Club to landscape the grounds of the city’sgovernment headquarters.

Town offices were moved into the present City Hall about fouryears ago when the former building was sold to help entice a bankto locate in the town. The bank uses the old City Hall as its mainoffices.

Since that time, the town has added a circular driveway toprovide a drive-through service for residents to pay bills on cityservices, but the grounds have remained relatively unchanged.

Aldermen had requested the garden club to make suggestions onhow to make the grounds more attractive. A handful of membersappeared before the board Tuesday to offer those suggestions.

Former Alderman Pete Mathews, a landscaper, described theirsuggestions, which includes a sidewalk along the front of thebuilding separating the front parking area from the lawn. Theparking area would be connected to the main building by a secondsidewalk, made of brick or a similar decorative stone.

Most of the trees would be removed, but would be replaced bycrepe myrtles and flower beds. The old oak centering the front lawnwould remain.

Mathews estimated the cost of the landscaping at $3,000 for theplants and tree removal.

Aldermen had budgeted $5,000 for the project and agreed theremaining $2,000 in budgeted money would be used for thesidewalks.

Garden Club member Charles Bufkin said inmates would be used toprovide the labor on the project with club members supervisingtheir work.

In other matters, aldermen agreed to close Atwood Water Park inthe week leading to the Atwood Music Festival.

Mayor David Nichols cited a shortage of personnel in the May 20closing. The park will reopen on May 25 for campers to move inprior to the start of the festival.

The closure will give time for city workers to prepare the parkfor the festival, Monticello’s largest annual event.

This year’s headliners include Pam Tillis, Joe Diffie and AndyGriggs.