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BJC donating land for morgue

The question of where a new St. Francois County morgue may be located appeared to be answered during a public hearing prior to the Farmington City Council meeting on Thursday.

Robert Sullivan, development coordinator for the city, said an application for a boundary adjustment was submitted by St. Francois County on behalf of Parkland Health Center at the Mineral Area Park located on Weber Road.

The property will be divided, with the portion of the pharmacy for the former Mineral Area Regional Medical Center to be donated to the county for a morgue.

The city will receive the portion of land housing the Farmington OAKS Senior Center and Habitat for Humanity of St. Francois County will receive land where two houses are now located.

“The real take-away from this is the generosity of BJC,” Mayor Mit Landrum said after the meeting. “They are the ones willing to take this property they could put on the open market and make some money off of it. Instead, they are donating it to some public entities that have a need.

“(BJC) says they care about the towns they are in. When it comes to us, being here, they’ve demonstrated that again and again. They gave us the land for the library, they gave us the land where the senior center is, they are giving the county a place for its morgue, they are giving Habitat for Humanity (property) … I think it is just tremendous of them to do this and help the communities they are in.”

The ordinance for the boundary adjustment was a first reading, with council action taken at a later meeting.

The other public hearing was regarding an application for a special use permit for daycare use at property zoned as C-2 located at 120 Holly Tree Lane.

The request was made by Kimberly Larkins on behalf of Fred Barnes. Sullivan explained the petitioners would still have to meet state requirements for a daycare license before the facility could be built.

Casey Rogers, a manager with Dr. John’s in Farmington, said she was sent by the corporate office over concern the location would violate their company policy of not being located within 1,000 feet of children.

“We don’t have any objections with the daycare,” she said. “We just don’t want it to be in violation of our requirements.”

Sullivan explained if the council approved the application for the permit, the petitioners were still required to meet the state license requirements.

After much discussion, the council decided to table a vote on the ordinance – which was up for a first and second reading and council action in regular session – to clarify the requirements for a daycare facility located near an adult business.

The council also approved a number of resolutions under the consent agenda during regular session.

Among the items approved was a contract with MC Power Company for an interconnection and operating agreement for a solar farm.

Farmington is one of five cities selected from the Missouri Public Energy Pool (MoPEP) for the solar farm.

Mark Krawczyk with MC Power spoke to the council about the solar farm, which will be 15 to 20 acres in size with 9,000 panels.

“It will produce 2.5 megawatts of AC energy, about 3.2 megawatts of DC energy,” he said. “That’s probably enough energy to power 400 to 500 homes.

“These will be community solar farms, allowing residents of the cities in the MOPEP to subscribe or reserve a portion of the solar farm up to 40, 50, 60 percent of their average utility bill to ultimately freeze their utility rate for the PPA (Power Purchase Agreement) period or ultimately 25 years.”

Krawczyk said they are still looking at properties for the solar farm, but expect the farm to be operational within the year.

Read more about the solar farm in the Feb. 16 edition of the Farmington Press.

Also approved by the council were a contract with SRG Global Coatings, Inc., Arcadis U.S. Inc., Deramida and the city for the installation of monitoring wells at Hagar Lake; a contract with Centar for lockers at the Farmington Civic Center; a contract with Dale Cooper, LLC for water park slide restoration; lease agreement with Toby Price for property located at 1013 S. Jefferson St.; a warranty deed to the Industrial Development Authority; and a contract with Herbst Excavating LLC for stormwater improvements.

In other business, the council heard a report from Finance Director Michelle Daniel, giving an overview on the restricted tax revenues from the three sources – Capital Sales, Transportation, along with Storm Water and Parks Tax.

During the Public Works report, Ward I Councilman Larry Forsythe thanked the city water employees for their work on the ruptured water line at KREI Boulevard last week.

The council next meets in regular session on Feb. 27.

Farmington Ward IV Councilman Mark Kellogg, at left, and Ward III Councilman Dennis Smith look over the agenda prior to the start of Thursday's Farmington City Council meeting. Also pictured is Mayor Mit Landrum.

Farmington Ward IV Councilman Mark Kellogg, at left, and Ward III Councilman Dennis Smith look over the agenda prior to the start of Thursday’s Farmington City Council meeting. Also pictured is Mayor Mit Landrum.

Shawnna Robinson is the managing editor of the Farmington Press and can be reached at 573-518-3628 or srobinson@farmingtonpressonline.com

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