Mayor Mike Robertson

The year 2017 was the best year I have experienced as mayor. You made the difference. City council, elected officials and employees...everyone worked together as a team. The past year, I came to know so many of you personally. We are all friends, which makes all of our jobs easier. I am honored to work with you and appreciate you so much.

There were accomplishments throughout the year in each city department. Every department worked for the benefit of the citizens. I credit our city leaders and employees for working well together, with no dissension. I just think it would be difficult to replace what we have.

Council members, you are in charge of the finances and real and personal property of the city. I compliment you on your job. You manage the city on approximately 4 million dollars a year, adding the street fund approximately 5 million a year. You manage to improve every department, with less money than surrounding cities, keeping a sufficient balance for emergencies. I compliment our clerk Carol, and her office, for their guidance in keeping a balanced budget.

Street department responsibility continues to expand. New growth brings added responsibility of leaf and limb pickup, road repair, drainage and lighting expense. Our street department plays a big part of community service and also provides overflow waste disposal for residents located within the city limits. The city does charge a small amount for this service, which does not cover the cost to the city. Defining this service is difficult. ADEQ has performed inspections and suggested defining our location as a transfer site. If were to be defined as a transfer station, permits would be required plus concrete hard surface, a building and on site employees. Waste Connections has recently received permits for a transfer station located just west of Opal at 1155 Highway 64. The transfer station is known as the Beebe Transfer Station. County and Beebe residents may now take unwanted articles to this location. Beebe Transfer Station hours are Monday - Friday & and the 1st Saturday of each month 8:00- 4:00 daily. Dumping charges will be determined by quantity and or weight. My suggestion to the city council would be to shut down the operations of the city dumpster beginning June 1, 2018. Of course, we will continue the spring and fall clean-up as always at our location free of charge. In shutting our location down, this will allow for less expense to the city and add an additional person for street department duties.

Code Enforcement is an important function of the city. Milton performs many duties as code enforcement. He enforces all the cleanliness ordinances, zoning and subdivision development codes, issues construction permits and enforces all state codes involving residential and commercial construction in addition to flood plain coordinator and much more. Kristen Boswell has taken on responsibility to assist Milton, in addition to her normal duties. Kristen assists Milton with building permits, heat and air, electrical and plumbing permits. She fills out the permit bank deposits, makes the planning and zoning agenda and assists in amendments to the zoning text. Code Enforcement is not a pleasant job and we need to thank them for performing these duties. As we continue to grow, this job will be more demanding. The 2020 Census information is now being distributed. Kristen, Carol and Milton are forming a committee to ensure we have an accurate count. More information will be shared in the near future.

Animal control is doing an excellent job. Adoptions are up. I continue to receive compliments on the cleanliness of the shelter and professionalism of the employees in the care of all the animals.

District Court continues to increase in accounts receivables. The amount of paperwork in the court and time payments is massive. We appreciate the time and management Jennifer is giving to reorganize and improve management skills within the department. I personally see improvements each court date. Jennifer, Jessica, Sarah & Angie are working very well together to assure your desired goal is met. We appreciate everyone who has assisted in keeping scheduled court dates. Each court date newly hired probation officer, Randy Reeves, adds more numbers to his list. This will be a very good program for the city. City prosecutor, Scott Bies continues to assist in all these areas. Scott is the most effective, efficient city attorney/prosecutor this city has had to opportunity to work with. Scott calls upon departments daily to inquire if there is anything he can assist with. His attentiveness is very much appreciated.

The fire department saw improvements during the year with new equipment. The city added over one million dollars of fire equipment for added fire protection. The city's fire department is made up of volunteers within the community. Chief Nick has been with the department since 1975 and last year he was able to implement programs to increase volunteer membership. We all need to thank the chief for his dedication to the citizens and his department. Under his leadership, he has created a professional staff of firefighters that will compete with any city department within the state. We are currently an ISO rated class 4 department ensuring competitive homeowner insurance rates. We are so very close to a 3 rating that will reduce rates even lower. Chief Nick has talked to me about acquiring a block of land for a future structure to house firefighting equipment in the area of Highway 31 South. This should give the city the needed points to reduce our ISO rating to a 3. For 2018, we need to have a goal to complete a land purchase to begin the process of constructing an equipment building, as suggested.

Each year, you have continued to add improvements to the city parks. Last year, the city budgeted the largest amount ever to improve parks. There was over approximately $300,000.00 dollars spent on improvements. Improvements included paving the entire complex, plus paving in the smaller parks. A new bathroom was constructed at the city ball park. New basketball courts were installed at the city ball park and Lunnie Park, along with additional play equipment. A community volunteer project was completed under the supervision of New Life Church at Lunnie Park. In 2018, we have committed to additional paved parking area and improvements at Daniel Park.

2017 was a good year for improvements to city sanitation pickup. The city granted a contract to Green Environmental Services. Owner/operator, Wayne Rathbun owner, established a home office here in Beebe. The service has gone from unacceptable service by Waste Management to excellent service provided by Green Environmental. A community wide clean-up is planned for Saturday May 19th in partnership with Green Environmental. Spring clean-up will be May 1st. - May 31st. Rain days may be added into June, if necessary. Please thank Wayne for his hard work and community spirit.

 

Mayor Mike Robertson