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City Approves Funds For 40th Stampede

The Buffalo City Council met Monday, June 24th, for their regular monthly meeting. All members were present accept Council Member Glenn Hightower. Buffalo Mayor Jerrod Jones presided.

Also present at the meeting was Phillip Bounds who served as President of the Buffalo Chamber of Commerce for three years and currently serves the Chamber as an Adviser for the Stampede. The council approved the request for funds from the Hotel Tax Account in the amount of $20,000 to help the Chamber hold the 40th Annual Buffalo Stampede.

Bounds explained that the Stampede will be different this year because it will be held at the Leon County Expo Center in conjunction with a two day PRA rodeo. The Stampede Parade will still take place in Buffalo and follow its traditional route ending in Harriman Park. There will not be a dance with the Stampede.

After the parade, the rest of the Stampede activities and the rodeo will be at the Expo. There will be food vendors, activities for children, and a Barbeque cook-off contest. Bounds thanked the council for their continued support of the Buffalo Stampede.

Outgoing BEDC Director Ken Jones introduced the new BEDC Director Mike Anderson to the council. Jones said that he felt very confident in Anderson?s ability and enthusiasm for Buffalo. ?We are lucky to have him come in and take over,? said Jones. ?I have all the confidence in the world that this gentleman will do his best for Buffalo.?

Jones? final words to the council: ?The Expo Center is important to us. Support it. It will put us on the map.?

The council discussed street repairs and voted to spend $200,000 to repair a few of the roads that get the heaviest traffic and are in the worst condition. Streets discussed were Humphrey Street, Medical Drive, and Railroad Street, among others. Also the road from Railroad Street to Harriman Park was almost washed out with the heavy rains and is in need of improvements.

The council approved some renovations to the old Buffalo Civic Center. It is allowed for the council to use the Hotel Tax Fund Account to finance the improvements. The council voted to start the renovations by redoing the floor, the kitchen area, and lighting system. The improvements do not extend to other parts of the building such as the Senior Citizens? or Library at this time.

Cost of the floor upgrade at the old Buffalo Civic Center will be $21,000, the kitchen will be $18,000, and the lighting $2,900. ?This will be a major step in the direction of improving this building,? said Jones. ?And it?s a good use of the funds to put them into something that benefits everyone.?

The mayor asked council members to consider upgrading the Buffalo water meters to an automated reading system as another project to improve the infrastructure of Buffalo. An automated system allows the meters to be read in a fraction of the time and labor it currently takes to read all the approximately 900 meters in the city.

The mayor recommended that Council Member Dianne Ryder be appointed as Mayor Pro-tem. The council all voted in favor.

In a workshop just prior to the beginning of the meeting, the council discussed the Wastewater Treatment Plant. City Attorney Jerry Nowlin said that he had not seen a contract for the work on the plant. The contract had been signed in March. The council discussed legal issues concerning property owned by the city, and decided to delay the project until research can be made.

Buffalo Police Chief Lance Pavelka gave the monthly report from the Police Department. There were 89 calls for service last month including 1 Driving While Intoxicated, 2 Burglaries, 1 Criminal Trespass, 1 Theft of a Firearm, 1 Forgery/Counterfeiting, and 1 Public Intoxication. There were also 114 citations issued.

Pavelka commented on the number of calls his department gets each week from the Tiger Mart concerning unruly bus passengers. According to Pavelka, some of the passengers that arrive from the Houston/Huntsville area are intoxicated and get into confrontations with Tiger Mart employees.

In council comments, board members welcomed Travis Crowder back as a Council Member. Jones expressed regret that former Mayor Royce Dawkins or former Council Member Dorothy Farmer were not present for the meeting. Plans were to thank them both for their long service to the city and to the council.

Ken Jones also spoke about Dawkins. ?He is a man I admire, and he did a great service for this community.?