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Council signs letter of support for housing project

At its Sept. 9 meeting, the Fredericktown City Council voted to sign a letter of support for low income housing to be brought to Fredericktown.

The letter will be submitted with an application being created by Madison County Service Coordination, Madison County Council for the Developmentally Disabled and North Star Housing. The application deadline is the end of September. 

During discussions the council voiced concerns regarding missed tax revenues.

“You know, I’m not so sure that’s such a good deal,” Alderman Jim Miller said. “We aren’t going to get any taxes out of it. They are going to be tax free.”

Alderman Deena Ward said she recalled during discussions that, after a certain time limit, the property would eventually be able to become private property and then be taxed. She said, until then, they would still be getting utilities from the city.

“It is something that is needed in this community, it’s needed,” Alderman Rick Polete said. “Would I like to see it somewhere else, possibly, but they own the property. It’s zoned for it. If we can’t stop it, I’d assume support it.” 

Alderman Harold Thomas and Alderman Paul Brown pointed out the application still would have to be approved for the project to move forward.

Building Inspector Richard Macke said the entire acreage is already off the tax records and would no longer be collecting taxes anyway.

“So even if they don’t build it, you’re not going to be getting any taxes off it,” Macke said. “We are in desperate need for housing in Fredericktown, decent housing.”

Polete said the fact is the property is already purchased and zoned correctly, and if they want to do it, they are going to do it. 

“I would just assume as a city supporting with this letter, because as Richard said, it is a need we have in our community,” Polete said. “If we could stop it or do something about it I’d feel much differently but we can’t.”

Polete, Ward, Brown and Thomas voted to sign the support letter with Alderman Kevin Jones absent and Miller voting “no.”

Utility Clerk Ashley Baudendistel presented the council with three bids for remote metering systems. The devices would replace current electric and water meters and allow meters to be read from the office.

Baudendistel said she would recommend going with Nighthawk as they are the cheapest and will work best with current equipment. She said their meters can be purchased through Master Meters and would allow 200 of the current meters to only need a head replaced. 

The council approved a request to waive fees for the city-wide yard sale for the Cub-Arama tractor show Sept. 26 to 28.

A travel request from the utility office staff to attend the annual Missouri Rural Water Association meeting Oct. 29 and 30 in Lake of the Ozarks was approved.

The council approved a request by St. Michael Church for a temporary liquor license for Oktoberfest, Oct. 6.

The council then approved the purchase of salt for the winter season. City Administrator James Settle said he would like to commit to the purchase before it disappears.

CPA John Boyd from Thurman, Shinn & Company ran through a review of the proposed 2019-20 budget before the council went into closed session for one personnel matter.

During regular session business the council heard an audit presentation from Debbie Johns of Van de Ven LLC for 2017/2018.

Mayor Kelly Korokis recommended Tara Hale for the Park Board. The council approved the request.

The council then approved an ordinance setting the tax rate of levy for general revenue purposes at .7432 and for park fund purposes at .1289 on each one hundred dollars.

An ordinance amending the city’s personnel rules and regulations relating to payment of pre-employment controlled substances and alcohol testing was approved and the meeting was adjourned.

The next meeting of the Fredericktown City Council will be Sept. 23 following the 5:30 p.m. work session at city hall.

The Fredericktown City Council discusses a low-income housing project at its Sept. 9 meeting.

The Fredericktown City Council discusses a low-income housing project at its Sept. 9 meeting.

Victoria Kemper is a reporter for the Democrat News. She can be reached at 573-783-3366 or at

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