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The topic of separating city clerk and court clerk duties was on the docket for the Southwest City Board of Alderman last month. According to unapproved minutes from the July 23 council meeting, Municipal Judge Erin Willis met with the council to discuss the possibility of allocating court clerk duties to the city of Pineville.

Judge Willis explained that Southwest City will still be able to operate a municipal court and receive court revenue, but, to be in compliance with state statutes, the city would need to have a separate court clerk for 30 hours per week -- 15 of which can be spent in-office and 15 of which can be spent via phone or email.

She noted that Pineville is best equipped to help and be entirely in compliance with new laws.

Willis said that court revenue is about $13,000 per year and Pineville is asking for compensation of $950 per month. This will, in turn, cover the cost of the judge, prosecutor, supplies and clerk wages.

Southwest City and Pineville will enter into a six-month contract and any adjustments can be made following that term.

Willis said that Pineville has requested the city's Judicial Training Fund be distributed to Pineville for Willis' yearly training.

The council voted to begin the process of transferring court clerk duties to Pineville.

The council then went into an hour-long closed session. Upon re-opening the meeting, Mayor David Blake provided a summary of the closed session. Blake said the council had received complaints of City Hall smelling like cigarette smoke, due to smoking in the city's police department.

The council voted to keep the door between the city hall and the police department closed at all times.

Blake also reported the council will abide by the Sunshine Law and charge a fee for public record requests. He requested that Zinn keep record of the time expended researching and to collect the request fees before distributing record information.

According to Section 610.026.1, RSMo, allows a public governmental body to charge up to 10 cents per page for standard paper copies, the average hourly rate of pay for clerical staff to duplicate documents, and the actual cost of the research time for fulfilling the request.

Departmental Reports

Fire Chief Shane Clark said the department responded to six medical calls, one road obstruction and one grass fire since the last meeting. Clark noted that propane costs $0.99 cents per gallon currently. He said that he uses propane for the fire engines during winter and requested to purchase 500 gallons before the price increases.

The council agreed to delay purchasing propane at this time.

Public Works Director Shane Clark reported the street department repaired the air conditioner at the fire station, trimmed limbs on Comanche Street and has plans to trim limbs on Liberty Road.

Clark said the water department repaired a leak at the top of Bluebird Lane and is checking on a leak at the end of Birkes Street. He also noted the wastewater department is undergoing summer cleaning.

Police Chief Bud Gow said the department issued 12 tickets, assisted two agencies and issued one ordinance violation since the last meeting. Gow reported the Dodge patrol vehicle recently overheated while Officer Rafael Ramirez was driving it. He said it will cost $100 to repair; $50 for parts and $50 for labor at NAPA. The council voted to pay for the vehicle repairs.

City Clerk Missy Zinn presented the council with the bank reconciliation report for the month of June and the city's six-month financial report. The council voted to publish the financial report, per legal requirement.

Zinn then presented the council with data regarding insurance deductibles for each city vehicle and inquired about removing the wastewater department's Vac-Con vehicle from the insurance policy. Alderman Judith Pendergraft asked to know how much the city would save by dropping the vehicle from the insurance.

In other business, the council:

• Voted to purchase one case of printer paper from Toner Saver at a cost of $35;

• Discussed requiring more than three check signers on city accounts in case of emergencies or absences;

• Voted to enroll in online banking.

General News on 08/08/2019

Print Headline: SWC court clerk duties to be transferred to Pineville

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