Amite "Community Center" water tower to be demolished

Spangler Engineer Kylie Bates advised the Amite Town Council Tuesday night, November 4 that the contract has been signed for the demolition of the water tower located behind the Amite Community Center. Due to elections the regular meeting of the council was held at the Amite Community Center.

The topic of demolishing the tower was brought up February 12 of this year. Mayor Reggie Goldsby brought up the subject stating that something needed to be done with the tower. The well does not work and he felt that, "it needs to be condemned before it causes a disaster."

Kylie Bates with Spangler Engineering had taken bids in the past to have it demolished and the lowest bid came in at approximately $18,000. Councilman Buddy Till posed the question, "Would it be worth applying for grant money to keep the tower considering it's unique and antique? Could we get a beautification grant?" According to both Bates and Amite Water and Street Superintendent Joe Dupuy the tower is in horrible shape structurally. Bates stated that it may cost more to beautify the tower than to demolish it.

Since the initial discussion the tower has come up many times. Then on Tuesday's meeting Bates informed the council that a contract has been signed with Pittsburgh Steel for the demolition of the tower. The approximate cost will be $26,000, $8000 more than the older bids. Pittsburgh Steel is bringing in a crane from Texas and demolition should start soon. Bates stated that the tower should be gone before the end of November.

In other business:

• The council agreed to abandon a portion of East Pine Street.

• Accepted gasoline bids from Amite Oil Company for regular gas at $2.135; plus gas at $2.214; road diesel at $2.665; off-road diesel at $2.466.

• Established a resolution to declare surplus property that is being donated to Ponchatoula High School. The town is donating old computers and software to the school for a program they have in place where students disassemble the computers and re-configure them.

• Established a resolution to declare surplus property for public auction for office equipment.

• Accepted a recommendation from Amite Police Chief Jerry Trabona to promote Lendrick Francois to a sergeant with the Amite Police Department.

• Heard from Amite Chamber of Commerce President Heather Williams-Cavarreta. She thanked the council for allowing the Chamber to use the community center for Bon Appetit'. She informed the council of the upcoming events - Wednesday, November 12 the monthly Chamber meeting will be held at Mike's Catfish Inn with Jo Ellen Curruth as the guest speaker; the Chamber Christmas Parade will be held Tuesday, December 9 beginning at 6 p.m.; and a tentative ribbon cutting at Bond Eye Clinic has been planned for Thursday, December 11 from 3 - 6 p.m.

Councilmen present were Buddy Till, Mark Vining and Walter Daniels. A special meeting of the town council is set for Monday, Nov. 24 at 7 p.m. The public is encouraged to attend.

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