Purdy mayor resigning

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Prock moving out of city, helping council find replacement

Purdy Mayor Bo Prock said his goodbyes on Jan. 14, as he is resigning his position due to his moving out of the city.

Prock, 35, whose family purchased a property in McDowell, will be replaced by Mayor Pro Tem Brian Bowers. Prock’s term will expire in April 2021.

“We have always wanted to own our own land, and this property just came up for sale at the right time,” he said. “I have enjoyed my time as mayor and I will miss it. I would have loved to serve my full term.”

Prock said he has a shortlist of people who might replace him via appointment, or who may be added to the council since appointee Dan Musgrove has been absent due to health issues.

“That list is mostly for someone to fill a council seat,” he said. “There are a few people I know who might be interested, at least in the short term. Brian will probably fill my spot.”

Prock said he will continue to help city officials, especially with projects he in which he has invested a lot of time.

Prock said his greatest accomplishment as mayor was the city’s sewer project, where it built a pipeline to connect to Monett’s sewer plant.

“We had been working on that for 20-plus years,” he said. “Now, we are working with Allgeier-Martin on a 20-year fresh water and sewer plan to get our system back to a manageable state. We should be able to present that in the next 60 days.”

Prock said it has been his honor to be Purdy’s mayor.

“It has been my pleasure to serve the citizens of Purdy, working on projects and moving the city forward,” he said.

In other business, the city discussed its water metering system, which Prock said was pitched to officials by Suez as a fix for its water efficiency issues, a promise that has not come to pass as the last month was at 72 percent.

“We were told the meters would pay for themselves and there was no physical way we were losing that much water, but that’s not the case,” Prock said.

Above 70 percent is good compared to the past, officials said, but that is mostly credited to city staff fixing leaks as they find them.

Prock said he is staying in contact with the company, Utility Services to come down and see what issues the city is facing.

“I’ve also been working to get some grants for inner-city water and sewer repairs,” Prock said. “I’ve also been working with Allgeier-Martin, and you [aldermen] should have a long-term sewer plan, like a 20-year plan, coming soon that should lay out how to fix these issues.”

Alderman also heard from Seligman Police Chief Matt Phillips concerning a new reporting system, REJIS, which is more digital than the city’s current system and allows or officers to file reports and tickets from their vehicles.

Purdy Officer Russ Nichols said the change will have to come eventually, and they invited Phillips to explain more about what the REJIS system can do. The older system will become obsolete in 2021 when new state-mandated reporting requirements go into effect.

The city’s old system, A.L.E.I.R. is up for renewal in March at a cost of $500, and the REJIS system would run about $2,000 at start-up and then about $2,000 annually in upkeep.

Phillips said the REJIS system greatly reduces human error from transferring things like names and driver’s license numbers from notes to tickets. The system also gives photos of individuals, by name and date of birth, who do not have a driver’s license and may not be truthful about their identities, Phillips said.

Purdy would also be able to see information from other departments that use the REJIS system.

Phillips said the Barry County Sheriff’s Office and Monett Police Department use another similar system, ITI, which Seligman used for a year, and it cost about $8,000 annually.

Once the city moves to a new system, like REJIS, it will eliminate the need for police to bring paper tickets to the city prosecutor, and the city clerk’s job making reports will become more streamlined.

City officials asked to get a REJIS representative to come to the city to discuss the system, and they planned to make a decision from there.

Continuing in the law enforcement and courts area, City Attorney Darlene Parrigon explained why multiple warrants were recently recalled. The city’s judge performed a comprehensive recall of 32 total warrants, then the failure to appear warrants were divided from the failure to pay warrants, with the former reentered and the latter dropped.

Parrigon said the state is making it so cities cannot issue warrants and arrest people for failing to pay any more, and to be compliant, the judge did not feel comfortable keeping the failure to pay warrants active. Failure to appear warrants remain active.

Parrigon said typically, a person who received a ticket form the city would have 30 days to pay the fine, and if the person did not pay, he or she would receive a warrant and could be arrested. Parrigon said some people even waited to be arrested, as they would get, for example, a $100 bond, then that money would be used to offset the fine.

Now, if the person does not pay, the city will attempt to collect the money like any other money judgment through collection, which could include methods like garnishment of wages.

Officials said they should get more information from people in court when pleading guilty to make sure they have a mechanism to collect.

The council also voted to spend $1,265 on new tires for its backhoe and $1,850 for couplings for water line repairs. City staff said the couplings will be on hand when needed, keeping them from having to call a neighboring city like Wheaton or Monett and to be more prepared in times of need.

Officials also approved a $500 expense for termite damage treatment at the community building, which was discovered as the interior is demolished to be remodeled as the new City Hall.

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