Council business focuses on Civic Center

The city of West Plains revised an agreement with Ticketmaster for ticket sales at the West Plains Civic Center and agreed to move forward in pursuit of American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds at its meeting June 21.
Council met for closed session at 5 p.m., with the regular meeting at 5:30. Mayor Mike Topliff, Councilman John Niesen, and Councilman Johnny Murrell were present, while Councilmen Josh Cotter and Jessica Nease were absent. Also present were City Administrator Sam Anselm, City Attorney Charles Cantrell, and City Clerk Allison Skinner.
The consent agenda was approved, which included the appointment of Billy Cobb and Mike Pettit to the Southern Hills Community Improvement District board, and Bret Ramseur, Kirt Ramseur, and Steve Hari to the Ramseur Farm Community Improvement District.
Council approved a new agreement with Ticketmaster, which handles ticketing for events held at the West Plains Civic Center. The revised agreement is for a three-year term instead of six and amends some of the fees. Previously, even if a ticket only cost $10, a $3.50 facility fee would be charged, along with handling fees, sometimes making fees as much as tickets. It was explained that in the new agreement, tickets for $10 or less will only be charged an additional $1 facility fee, plus handling. Ticketmaster also will provide updated equipment to the civic center.
Council further approved a contract of approximately $69,000 with Sapp Design Architects for a renovation master plan for the West Plains Civic Center. The firm will help create a 20-year master plan to help the city meet future needs of the community through the civic center. With the center coming to its 30-year anniversary, the 20-year plan will take the facility to its 50th year.
The city also will move forward with its application for ARPA funding, applying for funding through Missouri Department of Natural Resources for assistance with programs for drinking water, wastewater, and lead and copper inventory. Council approved a resolution allowing Anselm to sign grant paperwork as needed. It was explained that grant paperwork will be submitted in July, with a 90-day review period before award, with more award points given to smaller communities. 
In other business:
-Council renewed an annual agreement with West Plains Downtown Revitalization Inc. for economic development and approved a resolution to allow the organization to participate in training and mentoring programs provided by the Missouri Main Street Program.
-Council gave first reading to an ordinance for rail grade separation for the Independence Crossing, along with first reading of an ordinance for the rail crossing closure at Thornburg Avenue.
-Several bids were approved by council, including a $48,500 did for street striping by Morgan Construction of Belton, Mo.
-Council also approved a request for a fireworks display at the West Plains Country Club.
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