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New City officials sworn into office

The Fredericktown City Council assembled for its first regular meeting with newly-elected Mayor Kelly Korokis Monday, April 9 at City Hall.

Former Mayor Mark Tripp addressed local officials and city employees for the last time as Mayor of Fredericktown by thanking them for a job well done. He said that while no government is perfect, he was proud of the accomplishments made by the city during his tenure.

Tripp also addressed the ongoing dispatch and lease agreement negotiations in the public communications forum. Tripp said the two parties have made some headway. Still, an agreement has not been reached.

“In my opinion the County Attorney has done a very poor job of communicating,” said Tripp. “Before all was said and done, I had to ask them five or six times to get a straight answer as to whether they were serious about kicking us out or not. I strongly urge this council to do the right thing.”    

The County has set a deadline of May 1 for the City to accept the contract. The contract is for the lease of Fredericktown Police Headquarters and city dispatch services. Tripp’s comments at the meeting Monday night were the first time the issue has been addressed in open session at a regular City Council meeting.

Mayor Kelly Korokis took the oath of office to begin her two year term Monday night at the meeting. Korokis won the April 3 Municipal election with a total of 182 votes edging Danny Kemp who garnered 165 votes.  

Aldermen Harold Thomas and Phil Wulfert were also sworn in for new two-year terms as well as newly-elected Alderman Jim Miller who will serve the residents of Ward III.

Margaret Miller presented the Mayor with a certificate from the State Historic Preservation Office commending the City for 20 years of Certified Local Government.

Animal impound fees will increase this spring. The council approved an ordinance which raises the fee from $7 per day to $10 per day. Animal Control Officer Dan Welker said the additional fees will provide for basic necessities for the animals.

Benson Street (between Marshall and Park Streets) will become a one-way (westbound)street. An ordinance passed by the council will alter the flow of traffic pending the placement of required signage. The street department intends to place the signs today.

Repairs to the pump at the Municipal Pool were approved by the Council. Edmonds Electric Motor of Desloge will provide the service at a cost of $2,653.

City Electrical Engineer Ray Blakley addressed the council regarding the building of an electric distribution line in the West Industrial Park, additional substation work at the West Industrial Park and the purchase of an additional transformer. The council opted to table discussion of the project until the next meeting for review.

The Fredericktown Police Department answered 466 calls in March, which included four motor vehicle accidents. A total of 69 reports were filed. This includes reports with the city prosecutor, the state prosecutor, juvenile division or as an informal report. Officers issued 105 summons and 119 warnings.

The Department was also approved for a 75/25 matching grant for the purchase of a utility vehicle. The United States Department of Agriculture will provide funds in the amount of $15,100 and bids are currently being accepted.

Appointments for some municipal and council offices were made at the meeting. Rick Polete was elected President of the Board by the Council. Barbara Stevens will continue to serve as City Clerk and Bimbi Lopez will continue to serve as Deputy Clerk. Mary Boner will continue to serve as City Attorney and Wayne Keller will continue to serve as Municipal Court Judge.

Alderman Polete made a motion to go into closed session to discuss a contract matter. The motion passed, unanimously.

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