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Pioneer Village looks to recoup expense

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By The Staff

PIONEER VILLAGE -- Expecting to get most of its expenses incurred in the ice storm back from the federal and state governments, Pioneer Village officials may have an opportunity to receive even more items as a result of the disaster.

City clerk Recka Daniels said Pioneer Village should get back about $4,500 of the $5,223 spent on various storm-related expenses.

The money will come from the federal and state government coffers.

Daniels expected the funds to be received in June.

With any federal disaster, mitigation grant money is made available.

Daniels said $40 million in mitigation funds are available for Kentucky.

Application can be made for items such as generators, sirens and weather radios. Some drainage relocation work could also receive funds.

She said the city must make its intent known to apply for the grant money and then it would have 30 days to submit a list of projects.

Mayor Gary Hatcher felt if a weather siren was secured, it would be best suited for near Maryville Elementary School.

With the normal wind direction, Hatcher felt that would be a good site. Currently, Zoneton Fire Department has a siren.

In other business:

*Two computers were acquired for the police department. The purchase had been discussed for a couple of months and replace outdated computers.

*Tests were given to five officers applying for a vacancy on the police department.

Chief David Greenwell will have three candidates to make a choice. Whoever is selected will have to attend the police academy.

The department is short one officer and Neil Bowen will be out of work for at least four months with knee surgery.

Hatcher said he hopes to have a part-time officer in place who is already trained to help until the force is back to full complement.

*After getting two police officers through the COPS program, Pioneer Village will apply for another under the stimulus package from Washington.

The city would receive federal funding for a new officer for three years but it must guarantee it would retain and pay for the fourth year.

The COPS grant would have to go for a sixth officer and could not be used for either of the two current vacancies.

Daniels said with benefits a police officer would cost an average of $45,000 a year.

*Hatcher said he would like to have a digital sign installed in front of city hall to promote local events.

He said the purchase would come in the next fiscal year.

Not only would the sign promote city events, Hatcher said many people don’t know that Becknell Hall is the city hall.

He asked councilmembers to look at other signs to get an idea what might be suitable.

Besides a sign, the entrance at city hall needs a drainage pipe and grading work.

The mayor said water is currently running over Summit Drive.

Money left over from a previous grant could be used for the project.

The next meeting of the Pioneer Village City Council will be on Tuesday, April 28, at 7:30 p.m. at Becknell Hall. The public is invited to attend.