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City seeks grant for second phase of bike skills park

by David Showers | June 22, 2022 at 4:04 a.m.
A file photo of the front of Hot Springs City Hall as seen from Convention Boulevard. - File photo by The Sentinel-Record

The consent agenda the Hot Springs Board of Directors considered Tuesday night included a resolution authorizing the city to apply for grant funding for the second phase of the bicycle skills park it plans to build on Valley Street.

The Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism Outdoor Recreation Grant the city is seeking would provide $100,000 for phase two of Velocity Park. The grant partially funded the $270,895 contract the board awarded American Ramp Co. of Joplin, Mo., in March for phase one, which will include an asphalt pump truck and wood and metal features for the bike skills loop.

Parks and Trails Director Anthony Whittington told the board last week that construction should start by the end of the summer.

The 2022 budget the board adopted in November included a $100,000 match for the phase two grant. Whittington said the grant application is due Aug. 26. Winners will be announced at the end of the year.

Tuesday's consent agenda also included the following:

• A resolution authorizing the creation of a part-time trails coordinator. Whittington told the board the city has been unable to fill the part-time, contract position vacated by Ken Freeman in December. Freeman retired after working as a part-time independent contractor for 16 years.

The part-time position is for 20 hours a week.

• A resolution authorizing a memorandum of understanding with the Hot Springs School District for contract payment of a school resource officer.

Police Chief Chris Chapmond told the board the SRO is the only one contracted by school districts in the city. The Hot Springs and Lakeside districts contracted three to four SROs through the police department before forming their own police forces.

Act 629 of 2019 allows school districts to appoint institutional law enforcement officers, effectively creating campus police forces similar to those used by colleges and universities. The state Commission on Law Enforcement Standards authorized the creation of the Hot Springs School District police force in October 2019.

• A resolution authorizing the police department to apply for and accept the $5,000 one-time stipend for certified law enforcement officers.

The Legislature appropriated funding for the stipends during the fiscal session it concluded earlier this year. All certified officers at the police department, and any certified prior to next June, are eligible for the stipends.

The resolution also authorized the police department to apply for some of the $10 million available through the state's Public Safety Grant Program.

• A resolution authorizing funding for city directors to attend the National League of Cities City Summit in Kansas City, Mo., Nov. 17-19.

Erin Holliday, District 1, Marcia Dobbs-Smith, District 3, and Steve Trusty, District 6, plan to attend the conference. All three were elected in 2020.

"This is extremely good training for anyone in an elected position," City Manager Bill Burrough told the board last week.

• A resolution awarding a term contract to Univar Solutions USA of Kent, Wash., for fluorosilicic acid.

According to the request for board action, the city's regional water system has been fluoridated since 2015. A law the Legislature passed in 2011 requires cities with populations of 5,000 or more to fluoridate their drinking water.

The city said the 23-cent per pound price increased to 28 cents. The city used 136 pounds last year. Univar was the low bidder of the two companies that submitted bids last month.

• A resolution awarding a term contract to Shannon Chemical Corp. of Shannon, Pa., for blended polyphosphates.

According to the request for board action, the city's water treatment plants use the chemical to inhibit corrosion of water mains, isolate nuisance metals and improve water quality. Shannon's $261,500 bid on 25,000 gallons was the lowest of the two received by the city.

• A resolution accepting the city's financial statements for April, which included the statement on expenditures of federal pandemic assistance. The board requested the Schedule of Expenditures and Federal Awards be added last month.

The $11,802,566 in general fund revenue through April exceeded the first four months of last year by 22%. The $2,825,783 in net revenue was 130% more than last year.

Print Headline: City seeks grant for second phase of bike skills park

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