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Farmington City Council holds work session

Steps to repopulate the city government’s many committees, and a reminder about a big event this weekend were list-topping business at the Farmington City Council work session Thursday evening.

The annual Wiggle and Giggle Kids Fishing Derby will be held this Saturday morning starting at 7:30 a.m. at Hager Lake in the Farmington Industrial Park. It’s a chance for children to pit their angling skills against their friends and the available fish on hand in the lake. Prizes are awarded at the close of the competition.

Bud Norman, parks and recreation director, said this year will be similar to past years. The young anglers will register starting at 7:30 a.m. at the parking area near the lake. There is no entry fee to compete … simply show up. Contestants fan out around the lake looking for that “fishy” spot, then toss the hooks in the water at the “shotgun” start — of an air horn blowing.

Contestants fish until late morning. Drinks and hot dogs and cookies are provided free of charge. Each contestant receives a “goodie bag” including a cap, fish stringer and other items when they sign in.

Following the competition, awards are given away for the biggest fish, most fish, and most unusual catch. Bicycles, camping gear and other prizes are handed out. Contestants can keep or release their fish. Missouri Department of Conservation rules are followed during the event.

Norman told council members Thursday that the event is ready to go. With fair weather expected, it’s likely a couple hundred kids could turn out.

Council members also heard public hearings on two proposals. The first was for rezoning of a small tract of land near the intersection of Hoctor Drive and Perrine Road. The property, formerly part of the old State Hospital #4 land, will be used as a site for a Habitat for Humanity home to be built. The issue will be voted on later this month.

The second matter was a resubdivision of land at 610 and 702 North Washington Street. Preliminary plans call for an existing trailer park to be removed and a new pharmacy to be built on the site. An entrance to a First State Community Bank branch would be relocated further up Washington Street, aiding in traffic congestion at the nearby intersection of Washington and Karsch Boulevard.

It was said that the Missouri Department of Transportation is currently conducting a traffic study in the immediate area as part of the proposed change of use for the land.

And in keeping with traffic studies, Lt. J. Lee Boyd, Farmington Police, reported that a traffic survey is being done along Old Fredericktown Road. Recent street improvements have resulted in several complaints of speeding and reckless driving in that area.

Boyd also reported on the search for a new police officer for the city department. Detective Chris James has turned in his resignation to take a job outside of law enforcement. The council heard a request and later gave approval to promote Bill Gammon to the position of detective. The police personnel board will be working with the department to find a suitable candidate to take Gammon’s place in the patrol division.

The council will meet next on May 17.

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