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story.lead_photo.caption Ward 4 councilman Bob Washington, left, asks a question Tuesday while Ward 3 councilman Alan Combs listens during the Fulton City Council's meeting at Fulton City Hall. Photo by Ryan Boland / Fulton Sun.

The Fulton Street Fair is coming back to help usher in the start of summer in downtown Fulton.

The Fulton City Council voted 7-0 to approve a request to schedule the popular event for its 17th year June 25-26 during the council's regular meeting Tuesday night at Fulton City Hall.

The Fulton Street Fair was canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Ward 4 councilwoman Lauren EH Nelson abstained from Tuesday night's vote since she is co-chair of the Fulton Street Fair committee.

"We know you guys (on the committee) have been working hard and we appreciate it," Fulton Mayor Lowe Cannell said to Tiffany Cox, the other committee co-chair who attended Tuesday night's meeting to make the official request. "We're all excited for things like this."

Several council members voiced their concerns about the committee's request to close Court Street — from St. Louis Avenue to 7th Street — starting at 5 p.m. June 22 to set up the carnival. Seventh Street — from Nichols to Market Street — would also be shut down.

"It's a huge inconvenience to close down the street for so long (before the street fair starts)," Ward 1 councilman Mike West said.

Cox told the council she would have a conversation with the carnival owners to see if there was some "flexibility" with the early timing of the street closures.

"I'm happy to go back and ask if any kind of adjustment can be made to make both parties happy," Cox said.

Council members also received an update from Parks and Recreation Director Clay Caswell on Tuesday night about progress being made to open the city's new Legends Rec-Plex.

Caswell explained cardio and fitness equipment for the facility had arrived earlier Tuesday and was expected to be installed Wednesday.

He added installation of the building's phone system and internet had yet to be completed but anticipated it would be done by early May.

"We want to get that operational as soon as possible," Caswell said.

He addressed a concern that cellphone reception in the Legends Rec-Plex was inadequate. Caswell noted his department had explored a cellphone repeater system, but that it was very expensive, so the installation of Wi-Fi calling was being considered.

"(Reception) is very poor inside the building because there is so much metal," he said.

City officials had targeted May 1 for the possible opening of the facility, but Caswell stressed it would likely be at least the middle of the month before it would be ready for the public.

"I don't feel comfortable setting a date," Caswell said when asked about scheduling a grand opening.

Council members heard the second and third reading of two ordinances Tuesday night and unanimously approved both. The first ordinance repeals and enacts a new Chaper 30 on cemeteries in Fulton's city code.

The second ordinance gives Cannell the authority to execute all necessary documents in regard to the Federal Transportation Alternative Program grant for $233,789 that the city received for its Business 54 sidewalk project.

The project will cover the installation of sidewalks on the east side of Business 54, from Collier Lane to Westminster Avenue.

The council also heard the first reading and gave approval for the second of an ordinance that would authorize Cannell to execute a contract with Callaway County Assessor Jody Paschal and the Callaway County Commission relating to the preparation of assessment lists.

Council members gave approval to a resolution authorizing Cannell to make application and sign all necessary documents in relation to the 2021 Protection of Soft Targets/Crowded Places Grant.

Also under new business, the council gave its OK to a request by the Central Missouri Foster Care & Adoption Association to waive the fee for Whitlow Pavilion for the organization's annual youth fishing event May 8.

Council members also approved a request by Kingdom Homeschoolers to waive the fee for the use of the Morgan Soccer Complex pavilion for its end-of-year picnic and field day May 14.

Under the consent agenda, the council authorized a request by David Beaver to schedule the annual Independence Day Parade down Court Street at 2 p.m. July 4.

The council's next scheduled meeting is 7 p.m. May 11. It will be preceded by a work session starting at 6:30 p.m.

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