Public hearings before approving special assessments on a number of projects Monday evening for the El Dorado City Commission

The El Dorado City Commission held several public hearings before approving special assessments on a number of projects Monday evening.
The first was for the curb and gutter of the 300 block of North Atchison, as well as some driveways. They also levied special assessments for the sanitary sewer to the new middle school for the cost of $136,535, which was cost to the benefit district, and the paving of Wildcat Way for the cost of $433,022, with city at large paying $146,403. If the property to the south is platted or developed, they will be responsible for half of the improvement district costs for both of these projects.
Other assessments were spread for the paving, water and sewer improvements, as well as the rail spur, in the Industrial Park.
In other business, the commission:
• approved the amendments to the by-laws of the El Dorado Youth Commission. The changes included allowing for two alternate members, who may fully participate except for voting, it changed the requirements of the number of students from each grades to just say students from graded ninth through 12th. This would accommodate the number of students who want to participate this next year, the number of younger students interested and help them to achieve a quorum at more meetings.
• approved changes to the municipal code amendment for parks amending park hours and bathing regulations.
"We always have problems with people using the park at night," said City Manager Herb Llewellyn. "I think that is probably normal, but the scale has been ratcheted up."
He said problems were almost daily now and while it is not allowed now, the police can't write tickets.
Kevin Wishart, parks and recreation director, said the changes are to close the parks from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. He said there was no need to be in the park at that time other than possibly jogging on a bike path that passes through a park. He said the changes were due to increases in vandalism and attempted break-ins.
If someone was holding an event and had a permit, they could go beyond those hours.
The other concern was bathing in the spray parks, which has been a problem.
Wishart said he has been told about people doing laundry and bathing in the spray parks.
• heard concerns from resident Nancy Green on the cemetery roads, as well as fireworks.
"I am getting ready to move my husband's ashes from Sunset Lawns Cemetery," she said.
She said he had asked years before and she has asked about fixing the cemetery streets and nothing has been done.
"I go out every morning to put his flag out and every night to take it down," she said. "I have to drive in the grass most of the time."
Staff said they were planning on fixing those streets this summer.
She also had concerns on the illegal fireworks in town and the fireworks well into the early hours of the morning. She said it was worse in her neighborhood this year than she had ever heard.
During new business, Commissioner Nick Badwey said he had not heard as many fireworks after hours this year and asked how many calls the police had received.
Police Chief Curt Zieman said he had dispatch run a sheet of calls from June 27 through July 5 of fireworks complaints. They had 31 calls, with two different occasions being basically the same call. Last year, they also had 31 complaints.
"Compared to what it's been in years past, that is way lower," Zieman said.
• heard from resident James Powell who said he wanted to speak of leadership and example.
"I have the privilege of traveling this great state of ours almost on a daily basis," he said. "Recently, our Chamber put on a very well produced forum for state insurance commissioners. The city had one staff member there and the mayor was the moderator. What we didn't have was the rest of the leadership of the city council or the city manager. It shows the community they care and it is something they should be going out to. I am very disappointed."
He also said some of the things he has discovered is the community is lagging behind other communities that have events going on almost weekly with people showing up.
"When are we going to get a community back?" he asked. "I devised a plan and am asking the city council if they are on board to have an El Dorado Days, one day in the springtime, when we celebrate El Dorado."
Powell suggested they bring back something like Prairie Port for one day.
"I love this community and I don't want to have to move out of it,but there is nothing for my children, there is nothing for me," he said. "We need you guys to step up and lead by example."
During new business, Commissioner Bill Young said he too hoped they could get more events in town and said the Fourth of July activities were great with a lot of activities.
• when discussing the trucks turning in on the wrong entrance to Walmart, Commissioner David Chapin suggested instead of trying to keep trucks from turning there, they change it to accommodate trucks.
Assistant City Engineer Scott Rickard said that would be a significant cost and that road was not built for truck traffic.
Mayor Mike Fagg said they need to talk to Walmart about increasing the size of that road.
Chapin said he just wanted to look at that option and see if it was doable.