Board of Aldermen

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Time ticking as  aldermen weigh Trussell repairs

By John Howell Sr.

Batesville city officials continued, during their Tuesday, Feb. 15 meeting, to wrestle with the replacement of the Walter L. Trussell Park concession stand and restrooms building. The city had originally budgeted $85,000 for the project. The low bid is $107,000.

Trussell Park will help host a state softball tournament for 700 players from age 6 to 16 starting July 7, Alderman Teddy Morrow said.

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During an earlier meeting, the mayor and aldermen had discussed working with the low bidder to reduce the price for the facility, a discussion that continued Tuesday. City Parks and Recreation director Robert Lightsey told the city officials that he locks the bathrooms during winter months to try to prevent pipe freezing and vandalism. He said that during warmer months, a city employee cleans the bathrooms each weekday. During weekends, “I would suggest to the city, … hire a man on duty to clean those bathrooms,” Lightsey said.

“I don’t think we can make those bathrooms look like what we want our bathrooms to look like,” Alderman Teddy Morrow said, referring to the existing facilities at Trussell Park.

The discussion ranged from the economic benefits that ball tournaments bring to the city to a long range plan for development of ball fields on property near the Batesville Civic Center.

Returning to the more pressing deadline of having a new or remodeled concession stand and bathroom building ready by early July, Mayor Autrey asked, “Do you want Robert and I to go talk to McCain and see if — like Teddy said and make it look like we want to and see what it cost and make a decision two weeks from now?”

McCain Builders submitted the low bid on the project in December.

Aldermen tabled a decision, agreeing that it must be made at March 1 meeting to allow time for completion.