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UCFD to continue answering fire calls outside city limits

UCFD to continue answering fire calls outside city limits
By DONNA RYDER
Associate Editor
Union City Mayor Ter-ry Hailey announced at Tuesday night’s council meeting that he’s pretty sure the intent of the council is to continue providing fire protection for rural residents within its fire district. The question is: Just how are they going to go about it?
Hailey said he spoke with Obion County Clerk Vollie Boehms, who recently decided to stop collecting the $75 rural fire service fee in her office, and she provided him with a list of subscribers and said she would be willing to mail the notices from her office.
Hailey added it may be easy for the city to start its subscription program again.
Union City administered its own subscription program in the past, but signed a contract with Obion County last year when an effort was made to provide rural fire departments with much-needed funds.
At Union City’s May 15 meeting, Hailey expressed concerns about liability with a subscription program and, at that meeting, the council agreed to not respond outside the city limits unless the Obion County Commission took action.
On Friday, the commission considered a fire tax that would have provided the $350,000 needed to run the rural fire program in the county. The motion for the implementation of the tax failed by a vote of 12-6.
“We want the general public to know that we will continue to do that,” the mayor said Tuesday night, referring to providing fire service outside the city limits.
The council will discuss its options during Monday night’s orientation session.
After the meeting was opened in prayer by city attorney Jim Glasgow Jr., the council:• After a public hearing, approved an amendment to the zoning ordinance adding provisions to allow signs for landlocked properties. The first reading of the ordinance was held during a special called meeting on May 21.
• After a public hearing, approved amendments to the 2011-12 appropriations budget. City  manager Kathy Dillon said they are mainly housekeeping issues.
• Approved an audit contract with Alexander Thompson Arnold for fiscal year 2012-13 at a cost of $21,835.
• Agreed to contract with Northwest Tennessee Development District for fiscal year 2012-13 at a cost of $11,250.
• Heard a presentation from Bob Thornton with Nelson/Thornton Community Planners about a Tennessee Housing Development Agency grant which would allow local homeowners to make repairs to their homes to bring them up to city code. The council agreed to allow the company to apply for the grant on the city’s behalf.
• Awarded an asphalt bid to Ford Construction, the only bidder. The cost will be $94.55 per ton for 411D, $97.80 per ton for 411E and $600 for tack coat 403 per ton.
• Accepted a $525 bid from Hickman Motors for a 2000 Dodge Ram parks and recreation vehicle.
• Voted to close Ford Street from Nailling Drive to Main Street on June 23 from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. for a fundraiser.
• Heard Glasgow is working on a fireworks ordinance and will address it at the orientation session on Monday.
• Learned Hailey has met with officials at Greenway in regards to property violations. The company sent a letter to the city noting its schedule for clean up of the property will begin this Saturday.
• Discussed railroad crossings which need to be repaired. Public Works director Steve Ladd said state inspections are spread out through October. He said the last time, two crossings were worked on.
Ladd also discussed an issue with Church Street, weeds and high grass and the Lowe’s ditch. Upon a query by Hailey, Ladd confirmed Reelfoot Pond is leaking water, but it would be expensive to make repairs. The city is adding water to the pond.
• Heard as Fire Chief Kelly Edmison expressed thanks to the public works and water departments for their work in making repairs to increase water flow to fire hydrants.
“They’ve done some fantastic work,” he said.
• In response to a question from Hailey, heard from Edmison that the fire department generally depends on tankers to provide water for fires outside the city limits because water pressure on some hydrants outside the city limits are “useless because of the flow.”
Edmison said when a fire is confirmed, three departments in the county will go in order to provide enough water.
Hailey asked the question, saying he noticed the fire trucks coming into the city to get water during the A&J Salvage fire last week.
Edmison said the fire department can also use a pond or a swimming pool if it can be reached.
• Received a storm water report from Jimmy Temple, with the codes department.
Councilmen Dianne Eskew and Billy Jack “B.J.” Cranford were absent.
Published in The Messenger 6.6.12

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