Resolutions, ordinances and upcoming elections made up the bulk of business for the Purcell City Council at Monday’s meeting.
The council voted to piggyback a proposed 5 percent lodging tax election on the February 9 municipal primary election.
The lodging tax was posed to the council by the Heart of Oklahoma Chamber of Commerce in August.
As proposed, the bulk of tax proceeds will be spent on advertising and tourism promotion, including events and venues.
Subject to the tax will be a wide range of lodging facilities, including hotels, motels, tourist homes and courts, inns, rooming houses, RV parks and apartments not occupied by “permanent residents.”
Exempt from the tax will be the U.S. government or any federal agency or division, the State of Oklahoma and Purcell residents who have a permanent address.
A 7-member lodging tax committee will oversee the distribution of funds.
The council will appoint four members of the board – a Parks and Recreation Department employee, council member, city manager Dale Bunn and a citizen at-large.
The remaining three seats – hotel representative, merchant and chamber director – will be selected by the Heart of Oklahoma Chamber of Commerce.
If voters approve the tax, it will go into effect July 1.
The votes on the lodging tax resolution, ordinance and special election passed on a 4-1 vote.
Council member Jay Tate abstained on all three, as well as a resolution calling for the municipal primary election.
The filing period for the seats held by Ted Cox and Theda Engert will open December 7 and run through December 9.
The offices are for 3-year terms.
The council tabled a proposed new rate schedule for renting facilities at the Multi-Purpose Center and Pavilion.
Parks and Recreation director John Blue had said the new schedule simplifies the “overly complicated” fees presently charged.
Blue also sought – and received – council approval to apply for an Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation grant to improve boating and fishing access at Purcell Lake.
The 75-25 grant will be used to add a parking area, boat ramp, courtesy dock and restrooms on the north side of the lake.
Blue explained the grants are first-come, first-served. The application deadline is December 31, which will put the city in line for the grant.
He will provide the council cost estimates for the project at a future meeting.
People who don’t pay traffic fines and municipal court fees in a timely manner will find themselves dealing with a law firm specializing in collections.
The council approved a contract for collection services with Perdue, Brandon, Fielder, Collins & Mott.
The services will cost the city nothing as the law firm will charge the individual 35 percent over the amount owed to the city.
In other business, the council:
• approved an agreement with the Oklahoma Department of Transportation to maintain advance school warning signs with flashing lights on Grant Street (State Highway 74); and
• approved budget amendments of $4,000, $10,500 and $10,641.21.
The city manager told the council the ending date for the 2020 census has been extended to October 31.
He also reported OEC Fiber is working on delivery design and timing to bring their services into the city limits.
In the meantime, Windstream has been adding their fiber lines to the city’s electrical poles, Bunn said, adding the city is negotiating an update to a 1957 agreement with GTE.
He also said the city is working with the Town of Goldsby on a water agreement between the two municipalities.
Construction bids on Main StreetScape will be let in February, Bunn said.