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Bonne Terre aldermen cover full agenda at November meeting

Bonne Terre Mayor Erik Schonhardt and City Administrator Shawn Kay spend time conversing with each other before the start of the city’s board of aldermen meeting. Dan Schunks

The Bonne Terre Board of Alderman covered a full agenda when it met in regular session Monday night at city hall.

As part of the passage of the consent agenda, Caleb Cook was named to the Planning and Zoning Committee.

Afterward, the floor was open for public comment.

Stacy Kay spoke about the Christmas Market being held Nov. 25, which is Small Business Saturday. Beginning at 9 a.m., 35 indoor and 30 outside vendors will be present to showcase their talents.

“We have a ton of kid’s activities,” Kay said. “We have an opportunity for kids to write letters to Santa, and Santa will return those letters. We have a reindeer coming for a few hours. So, Santa’s going to come for breakfast, which begins at 8 a.m. Rumor has it that Santa’s going to make a surprise appearance later in the afternoon, somewhere in the market.”

Other activities and events taking place that day will be performances by the North County High School Vocal Music Department, the Mineral Area Fine Arts Academy, and Noah Meese. There will be carriage rides, and a tree lighting will take place in Bicentennial Park at 6 p.m. The Dave Black Band will perform at the lodge at the Iron Knot in the evening.

“We have some wine vendors coming in, and the Iron Knot has some other things scheduled inside their lodge,” Kay said.

Matt Crabtree, executive director of the Bonne Terre Chamber of Commerce, outlined various chamber activities. The Christmas parade, scheduled for Dec. 4, was discussed. The parade lineup begins at 5:30 in Veterans Park, with step-off at 7 p.m. Those interested in being in the parade should contact the chamber of commerce. The deadline for entries is no later than noon, Dec. 4. It’s suggested that entrants not wait until the last minute to sign up.  The theme for this year’s parade is “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree.”

The Cookie Trail, which was held Nov. 10-11, had over 200 participants.

“I heard back from a lot of the business owners in the area that they were very well attended, and it’s going toward the shop local focus that we have for November,” Crabtree said.

Halloween on Church Street was deemed a “huge success,” with a count of over 1,800 trick-or-treaters visiting the residents.

City Administrator Shawn Kay updated the board on several ongoing projects, the first being the Division Street project.

“The repaving of Division Street and the other streets that are involved in that grant is pretty well complete as far as design goes,” Kay said. “We’re just waiting for the water project to get a little farther along before we bid that so we can be ready to pave in the spring. The downtown TAP project is also in design.” The downtown TAP grant deals with new sidewalks, curbing and lights in the downtown area. It is funded through MODOT.

The new water lines associated with the Division Street project are being tested for connections, pressure, and pathogens.

“I was hoping that possibly by the end of the month, maybe the middle of next month, we would have Division Street completely ready to go,” Kay said.

In other infrastructure developments, Kay said, “Just recently, with the council and mayor’s blessing, we have applied for an EPA resiliency grant to install emergency backup generators at the park and Mansion Hill well sites. Between those two grants — which are both zero match, so they’re 100% funded — would be close to a million dollars if we get both grants.”

Fire Chief David Pratte advised the board that the department had recently received some of the hoses ordered six months ago.

“Probably the only thing else I’d like to say is ‘thank you’ for working on the water supply for our town,” he said. “If there was ever a major fire in our downtown community or our major businesses, that will be an asset. People don’t realize how important that is.”

Bonne Terre Library Director Carly Bess informed the board that the library will be participating in the Christmas Market on Nov. 25, “Mrs. Claus” will be at the library and added that, “all kinds of parents and teachers are going to be there to provide you with crafts. We’re providing three make-and-take crafts.”

The library is also receiving a $2,000 Love My Library program grant through AmerenMissouri.

“We were nominated by an Ameren worker in our city,” Bess said. “I haven’t got the name yet, but I’ll be getting the name of who it was and the people who nominated us.”

The grant is unrestricted, meaning it can be spent as the library sees fit. Bess also cited plans for a women’s reading club.

“I haven’t posted anything yet, but I already have 10 people signed up,” she said. “So, I’m ready for the flood to come in whenever I do post that.”

In police matters, Chief Doug “Scott” Calvert announced that his department was in the last phase of its mandated yearly training. He also mentioned that the department was trying to use “saturation patrolling” in order to maintain a higher visible presence in the community. He thanked Lt. Bill Stegall for his ability to facilitate the acquisition and installation of an engine, covered by warranty, that was projected to be a six-to-seven-month delay. Calvert said that it was thanks to Stegall’s efforts that the truck is back in full service.

The city approved several ordinances regarding the replating of property in Bonne Terre. The most important of these four transactions was the decision to divide a portion of city-owned property in the city’s industrial park in anticipation of the purchase of 10 acres by a prospective business.

The board discussed and approved a bid by Brockmiller Construction of Farmington for the removal of the drum filter at the Waystar treatment plant.

In new business, the board discussed and approved a liquor license request made by Josh Black for The Iron Knot. It also approved the bid for a plotter and printer to be used in city mapping. The board reviewed and approved requests for a lot split at 2 Hazel Street and a special use permit for 301 South Division Street.

The board announced filing dates for city elections being held April 2. Positions up for election are the mayor (4-year term), Ward 2 and Ward 4 aldermen (both two-year terms). The filing period will open Dec. 5 and continue through Dec. 26. Any person wishing to file as a candidate should contact City Clerk Mary Topping at Bonne Terre City Hall, 118 North Allen St., during regular business hours, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. City hall will be closed from Dec. 22 to Dec. 25 and will reopen Dec. 26. A filing fee of $25 is required at the time of filing.

Dan Schunks is a staff writer for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at





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