Airport repair work approved by council

Published 8:36 pm Wednesday, July 21, 2004

By By Arthur McLean
Repair work on Atmore's Airport got the green light after the city council approved a grant resolution to fund the repairs.
The grant, from the FAA through the Alabama Department of Transportation is expected to pay for 95 percent of the cost of sealing cracks in the airport's runway, said Mayor Howard Shell.
The city will have to provide the remaining five percent.
Volkert and Associates will be the consulting engineering firm in charge of the repair work and is expected to begin putting the project out for bids in the near future.
In other action, the council:
Approved the transfer of an off-premise bear license for the Texaco station, formerly Terry's Texaco on S.R. 21.
Heard a presentation from Candace Goodson from Southwest Alabama Mental Health. The organization served 840 people in the Atmore area for the year to date, with a budget of $700,000.
Recognized the Atmore All-Star 8-year-old Cal Ripken baseball team for its victory in the state tournament. For more coverage of the team, turn to page 10 in this issue.
Greg Russell, a candidate for mayor, presented a list of questions to the council when the meeting was opened for public comment.
Russell asked about the state of potholes and cut-ins for city services in the town's roads. Many of the holes have not been covered with asphalt. Shell responded that the city is working on the pothole situation, but heavy, persistent rains have delayed the repair work.
Russell also asked about damaged and worn street and traffic signs around the city, Shell said city street crews are surveying the needs for new signs, but theft and vandalism were ongoing problems with sign replacement.
Lastly, Russell asked about the city's progress in removing abandoned homes and buildings in the city's north side.
City planner Allen Nix said the city has 78 dilapidated or abandoned homes it is trying to demolish, but pursuing the issue through the courts is a lengthy process.
Councilman John Watkins added, "If it were up to me, there wouldn't be one abandoned building in town, but the law doesn't allow that. What we need, is a little more pride, but you can't legislate pride. We need to develop some pride in our city, and I'm talking about all of Atmore here." Watkins' remarks received applause from the audience.

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