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City Council Splits Vote on Approving 2011 Budgets

December 17th, 2010 by

Among the items on the City Council meeting agenda Thursday night were resolutions to approve the city’s operating and sales tax budgets for 2011. 

When it came time for the operating budget’s approval, Carolyn Brown made a motion to postpone the vote until January to allow input from Mayor-elect Allen Maxwell on the decision. The motion to postpone the budget vote failed with a 4-4 tie, allowing the vote to approve the budget to proceed.

The operating budget for 2011 then passed with a 5-3 margin. Alderman Tim Chase (one of the three “no” votes)  stated, “I vote ‘no’ solely for the reason that I feel we should wait til January to pass it.  The budget’s fine. I just would like for the incoming mayor to have some input on it.”

When the budget for the sales and use tax came around,  Brown again made a motion to postpone the vote til January and it also failed with a 4-4 tie.

City attorney Bill Daniels reminded the council they can make an adjustment to the budget at anytime in the upcoming year, not just in December, as is the usual practice.

This budget also passed with a 5-3 margin.


Ridgeway Construction Update

November 29th, 2010 by

Many changes can be seen at "the Ridgeway" in the past month.

 

New windows are making a big difference in the appearance of the building.

 

H.M.W. can now be clearly read, above the Wells Building.

It adds a historic look to the view from the west.

 

Insulation is being added in the Wells Building.

 

Sheetrock is also being installed in the Wells Building.

The support system is being built in place for the elevator / stair tower.

In the main Ridgeway structure, more framing is being put into place.

3 men are shown working of different projects on the laundry /excercise area.

while another works on the roof membrane on the Wells building, recently.


One Monticello Life: The Marketplace, Drew County’s Industry of the Year

November 21st, 2010 by

 

MonticelloLive on Vimeo.

The Drew County Industry of the Year award was recently presented to Launius Enterprises, also known as The Marketplace, at the MEDC/Chamber of Commerce banquet. The Marketplace is a 47,000 square foot building in which space is offered to individuals and businesses in order to sell their products. This week’s One Monticello Life tells of the beginning and growth of The Marketplace and its owners, Gene and Shelly Launius.

When Gene and Shelly Launius moved to Monticello from Hector in order for Gene to continue his education in forestry, an idea like The Marketplace never crossed their minds. Years later after owning J&L Timber Company and Prestige Home Furnishings, they purchased the old building that currently houses The Marketplace in hopes to lease the property to other companies. After numerous failed attempts, Gene had an idea and started the wheels rolling.

The Marketplace opened in September of 2009 with 77 booth spaces available and one man’s dream of becoming “THE” place to shop in Southeast Arkansas. The booths completely filled up within a few months so work quickly began to open up more of the building for additional spaces. Located at 249 Hwy 425 North in what most Monticellonians remember as the old Safeway grocery store, The Marketplace currently has 190 retail booth spaces between two parts of the building with future plans of more being added once the third phase of the building is finished.

Read the rest of this entry »


One Monticello Life: Drew County’s Business of the Year, Drew County Developmental Disabilities Council

November 14th, 2010 by

MonticelloLive on Vimeo.

The Drew County Business of the Year award was presented to the Drew County Developmentally Disabilities Council, Tuesday night at the MEDC/Chamber of Commerce banquet.

The DCDD operates several facilities in Drew and surrounding counties; has 275 employees;, and has a $4,p00,000 annual payroll.

This week’s One Monticello Life tells of the beginning and growth of the Drew County Developmental Disabilities Council, and their organizations.

Read the rest of this entry »


City Council Approves $65,000 for Beautification of City Square

November 11th, 2010 by

 

The Monticello City Council approved an additional $20,000 to add to the currently allocated $45,000, from several years ago, to be used for renovations and improvements to the Monticello City Square.

The modernization project will take place in four stages:

1.   fountain
2.   sidewalks
3.   columns
4.   sod

This is the same topic of last week’s meeting, where council member Claudia Hartness argued with the rest of the council over the improvements.  At that meeting, the council asked the square improvement committee to provide a drawing and cost estimates, which led to Wednesday night’s meeting.

Last week’s video has been viewd 425 time, so far.

MonticelloLive on Vimeo.


Monticello’s Stephanie Harton Featured on CBS Morning Show

November 8th, 2010 by

Stephanie Harton operates the weigh station for Potlatch, and provides the weather forecast for for their drivers.

Her “dream job” was to do the weather on the radio.  Thanks to the CBS morning show’s “Dream Job” series, that dream came true.

Last Friday, Harton was featured on the CBS Early Show, where she wasa shown broadcasting the weather on The Point 94.1.  She also got to go do the weather at KTHV Channel 11.

Stephanie told MonticelloLive, “The most fun I had was doing the afternoon show with Mike Kennedy and Sharpe Dunaway the past couple Fridays, I wish that was my full time job.”


Monticello Native Charles Crowson Departs KTHV, Accepting Baltimore Broadcasting Position

November 1st, 2010 by

After four years with KTHV, Charles Crowson is leaving Arkansas for a new position as morning anchor/multi-media journalist with WMAR in Baltimore, Maryland.

“It was an opportunity I simply couldn’t pass up,” Crowson said while signing off during his final broadcast on Today’s THV This Morning Oct. 29. “Arkansas is my home. It always has been and always will be, regardless of where my career takes me.” Read the rest of this entry »


One Monticello Life: Tommy Maxwell

November 1st, 2010 by

Allen and Ruby Lee Maxwell gave life to six children, one of which they named Tommy. It was May 4, 1949 when Tommy Maxwell came into the world in Warren, AR. Warren would be the city he would call home for all of his years growing up.

Life growing up was good in the Maxwell home. Allen worked with Arkansas Power and Light plus other side jobs that the kids were allowed to work with him.

“As kids, we helped dad with little odds and ends jobs like wiring and trimming trees. For fun, we loved to hunt and play sports. My favorite sport was football. I played until I hurt my back as a Junior in high school. I was injured during a game against Monticello High.” Read the rest of this entry »


990 Flu Shots Given at “Free Flu Shot Clinic”, Thursday

October 29th, 2010 by

990 free flu shots were given to Monticello area residents, Thursday, as the Drew County Health Unit teamed up the the Arkansas Dept. of Health, at the First Assembly of God church’s fellowship hall.

In addition to Thursday’s clinic, another 1,213 shots have been given at area schools, with City Park Schools scheduled on on November 3rd and Monticello High School planned for November 9th, according to Karen Brown, of the Drew County Health Dept.


City Council Updated on Sadie Johnson Center

October 25th, 2010 by

At Thursday’s meeting, Mayor Rogers reported that the city is still waiting for the insurance company to act in regards to the recent fire that destroyed the Sadie Johnson Community Building. Mayor Rogers reported that the insurance company had stated it would be 2-3 weeks before they will do anything.

The current insurance policy on the building is for $175,000 worth of coverage and there is an additional $20,000 coverage for contents. Mayor Rogers estimated the cost of rebuilding a similar structure at $400,000-$500,000.

The council then discussed having full-coverage insurance on all city buildings, and since insurance bids are being put out now, they will ask for full cost bids to be available.


Truck Reported Stolen in 2004 “Fished” Out of Lake Monticello – Edited

October 21st, 2010 by

Tuesday, a Nissan 4-wheel drive pick-up, which was reported as being stolen back in 2004, was pulled out of the Old HWY 13, Plantersville Road Access end of Lake Monticello.

With the recent lack of rain, the water level in Lake Monticello is much lower than usual, and allowed the top of the truck to be seen by someone fishing from their boat.

The truck was located in water estimated to be  9 feet deep, approximately 50 from the boat ramp.

The ongoing investigation is being done by the Drew County Sheriff’s Dept.  The Arkansas Game & Fish Commission and the Fire Dept. Dive Team assisted Triple A Towing in the recovery of the Nissan from the lake.

Eric Chisom and Kyle Berryman of the Fire Dept. are shown in the lake, as the truck is being towed out.

The photo was provided by monticellobigbass.com.


Roof Blown Off of Fairgrounds Exhibit Building

October 19th, 2010 by

The Drew County Fairground’s educational exhibit building, mysteriously, had it’s roof  “blown” off, Monday afternoon between 1:30 and 3:30.

The fairgrounds was destroyed , to a large extent, back in May, 2009, by a tornado, and this building’s roof was rebuilt and re-attached, as indicated by the “shinier” tin before the roof-line.

The new roof is now laying in large sections on the north side of the building, and doesn’t provide any clues as to what happened this afternoon.

The Monticello Airport reported no wind gusts Monday afternoon stronger than 15 miles per hour.

There was no electricity or gas hooked up to the building, and an explosion of some type does not appear to be the cause for the damage.

When informed about the damage to the structure, many fair board member’s were in disbelief, after the recent history of fairground’s structures, being destroyed by weather and wind.


MonticelloLive Celebrates 3rd Birthday, since Re-Launch

October 18th, 2010 by

MonticelloLive.com celebrated it’s 3rd birthday last week, since operations were taken over by Joe Burgess (“the MonticelloLive guy”) back in October, 2007.

Readership has grown consistantly over the 3 year period, as shown by the 1.8 million pageviews that the site has received over in the past year, averaging 150,000 pageviews each month.   Just click on the black, white, & orange One Stat.com logo at the bottom left of MonticelloLive newspages, to view updated statistics.

MonticelloLive is still designed to be “User Friendly”, with all current news stories on the front page.  For school lunch menus, obituaries, yard sales, or the classifieds, they’re just one click away, at the top of the page.

News and events may be submitted to MonticelloLive by sending an e-mail to joe@MonticelloLive.com.

If you are around town and see a guy in a MonticelloLive.com shirt, that’s probably Joe. You many want to slow down, because there may be a car wreck, fire, or other event nearby that would be better to read about, than be a part of.

And, of course, “Happy Anniversary” to the sponsors that make our time together each morning possible.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

At this time, we’d also like to announce that MonticelloLive has implemented a new policy concerning the posting of reader’s comments.

Positive comments are welcome and encouraged.

However, certain readers have felt that MonticelloLive was designed to be a forum to annonymously post comments intended to start rumors, stir up controversy, emphasize their specific causes, or insult another party.

While comments have been moderated in the past, before being posted: that policy will now be more specific, as to the negativity that has previously been accepted.  I agree with everyone’s “Freedom of speech”, but that does not include the “freedom to insult.”

Comments that are supportive of someone receiving an honor, or losing a loved one are appropriate; while, name-calling and comments that appear to only be meant to “draw fire” will not be posted.

While the embarrassment of someone that has been arrested may begin with an article that tells the public of that person’s list of charges, it does not seem appropriate to publicly detail every act that led them to this point.

Please remember, with over 1.8 million pageviews in the past year, MonticelloLive continues to be Monticello’s leading daily news source; a locally owned and operated business, providing a service to it’s readers.

Since taking over operation of MonticelloLive, it has been my intention to cover the news and events that affect Monticello and Drew County, not to provide a public discussion forum for the benefit of annonymous individuals hiding behind false e-mail addresses.

All comments will be read by MonticelloLive management, but the standards that must be met for them to be publicly posted has been raised.

MonticelloLive.com reserves the right to reject or remove any comment.  MonticelloLive.com does not endorse or adopt any comment.  Comments do not reflect the views or opinions of MonticelloLive or it’s owners, employees or associates.

Your understanding in this matter is appreciated.


Update – Col. Avery Found Not Guilty of Sexual Assault

October 8th, 2010 by

A jury of 6 men and 6 women took approximately 30 minutes to find Col. Robert Avery not guilty of the charge of sexual assault of a former student of the Warren ROTC program director.

The alleged victim had reported 3 different dates during late October 2009, as being the date the single act took place, included homecoming Friday, Halloween, and the date that she testified to in court.

She also admitted, on the witness stand,  that she had lied to Arkansas State Police investigators about prior sexual activity.

Although her “skin DNA” was found on a couch cushion, where the alleged intercourse took place, there was no other form of DNA present there.  This seemed important, due to the 17 year old’s testimony that the act lasted “around an hour” and based on her “cycle”.

In summary, the jury did not believe that Avery had sex with the former student, who was a part of the ROTC program he supervised at Warren High School.

Robert Gibson and Cliff Gibson represented Avery, all of whom were pleased with the jury’s decision.

Read the rest of this entry »


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