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Noel city officials hope to secure a large grant next year that will help them improve and expand the road between the Main Street bridge and the Highway 59 bridge.

City aldermen agreed to sign a professional services contract with the Harry S. Truman Coordinating Council. HSTCC officials will oversee the collection of traffic figures, design plans and a grant application.

Mayor Lewis Davis, of Noel, said that city officials have looked to the Missouri Department of Transportation to take on the project, but MoDOT officials keep saying funding is a problem.

Davis explained that floods have, over time, destroyed the walkway between the two bridges and that Noel neighbors cannot safely travel between the two.

Work will include widening the road and then creating a walkway, Davis said.

Noel city council members hope the grant, written by the HSTCC, will secure funding that is being offered through the U.S. Department of Transportation's $1 billion in the BUILD Transportation Discretionary Grant Program.

Of that $1 billion, Davis said $400 million is designated for projects in communities with populations of 40,000 or less.

The deadline for this year is already passed, but HSTCC officials will plan for next year. Noel is a member of the HSTCC and some of the work is pro bono, Davis said. However, Noel's part of the professional services contract is in the $1,800 range. Council members agreed to approve that amount and spread the payment over a two-year period.

In other action, council members voted to approve a $10 fee for those who are late paying their sewer bills.

During other business, Bev Bartley, with the "I'm Your Huckleberry" animal rescue, asked the council to consider charging Noel residents an increased fee for having a cat or dog that is not spayed or neutered. Bartley plans to ask various McDonald County towns to do the same. Charging a fee for not having a spayed or neutered pet is "the only way to get people to take responsibility," she said.

She asked city council members to up the fee from $10 per year to $100. Council members said they will take the issue under consideration at the next council meeting.

Fire Chief Brandon Barrett, of the Noel Fire Department, reported that the department had 21 calls in May, with 209.5 man hours and 5.5 reserve hours. Calls included one structure fire, three brush fires, five motor-vehicle accidents and two fatalities, including a motorcycle accident on North 59 and a drowning on the Elk River.

Crew members also delivered a baby before the ambulance could arrive, he said.

In the past year, crew members have delivered eight to 10 babies and stock OB kits on the medical trucks, he said.

General News on 06/14/2018

Print Headline: Noel Officials Hope To Improve Walkway Between Bridges

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