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story.lead_photo.caption City Clerk Rachel Anderson swears in Mike Harvey, who was re-elected as Ward 1 council member in the 2021 General Municipal Election on Tuesday. Photo by India Garrish / Fulton Sun.

HOLTS SUMMIT — The Holts Summit Board of Aldermen met Tuesday night, with most of the board meeting in person to swear in re-elected members and address new business.

The meeting began with comments from the public, including Thomas Jones, of Holts Summit, who talked about the need for the city speed limit to be reduced in neighborhoods close to U.S. 54 to increase safety. Recently re-elected Ward 1 alderman Mike Harvey said he could testify to the issue, especially in areas close to city limits where "tractor-trailers will greet you at your backdoor."

Last year, there were various accidents that occurred on routes OO and AA, according to Missouri Highway Patrol crash reports.

"(Jones and I) both feel that," Harvey said. "They're all within casualty risk. Sometimes nothing gets done until there are more crosses next to the highway."

Mayor Landon Oxley endorsed the idea, and City Attorney David Bandré said this could be made into a formal resolution to move forward with official changes, which would most likely be an ordinance for signage to enforce decreased speeds.

In new business, a resolution was passed authorizing an agreement and release between Loving Paws Services of Mid Mo, LLC, and the Holts Summit Sewer Department for the disposal of hauled waste. The business, which opened in March, will be able to hire a contractor to pump and haul wastewater from the property to the onsite wastewater plant.

Sewer Department Superintendent Keith Edwards said Loving Paws is currently working with a wastewater management company to help with the connection of the waste system to the city sewer.

Also in new business, the city will be welcoming a new police officer.

Oxley was authorized in a resolution to hire Chelsey Rivera as a Holts Summit police officer. City Administrator Hanna Thomas said the board had been looking for an officer since February in absence of a previous officer. Rivera has experience as an emergency dispatcher and is a veteran of the U.S. Army, according to meeting notes.

In a short ceremony, Harvey and newly re-elected Ward 2 council member Chris Redel were sworn in by City Clerk Rachel Anderson to certify the results of the April 6 municipal election.

Through new business and discussion, a 2021 Chevy Traverse was approved for the Holts Summit Police Department to purchase for $22,156, and the board approved Edwards to purchase a new dump truck for the sewer department.

Before the closed session, Holts Summit Police Department Sgt. Brandon Ruediger, who is also emergency management director for the city, followed up with the board on improving emergency management systems in case of weather-related emergencies similar to the outages that in February left 5,000 without power in New Bloomfield and Holts Summit.

The board discussed options for a new generator that would power the police department and Municipal Center buildings as shelters and will continue to look at options. Ruediger proposed updating the storm sirens in town with software that could be managed remotely and would improve immediate notification if storms were nearby, which the board approved.

"The name of the game with sirens is time," he said. "We want to get that (notification time) down to seconds."

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