JONESBORO — The proposed change in election procedures and some construction and engineering contracts appear on Tuesday’s agenda for the Jonesboro City Council.
Voters would decide on changes to the way Position 1 council members will be elected in the future during the May 24, 2022, primary elections. If approved those positions would be elected within their specific geographic wards only during that year’s general election. The city’s 80 square miles is divided into six wards, and each is supposed to have approximately the same population.
Position 2 council members would continue to be elected citywide.
Council member L.J. Bryant had proposed the “hybrid” election approach in 2020, but too late for that year’s election.
Council members are elected to four-year terms. Bryant said electing council members by ward rather than citywide would make it affordable for more potential candidates to run for the position.
A review of campaign contribution and expenditure reports showed Bryant spent $27,017 in his 2018 campaign. Last year, council member Joe Hafner spent $25,613.90 on his re-election campaign.
In other business, the council will consider a resolution to expand the scope of an engineering contract for the growing Jonesboro Downtown to ASU Connection project, which is a multi-use trail that will travel between the Marion Berry Parkway and Municipal Center on Creath Avenue and Church Street. Fisher & Arnold, Inc., will be paid up $58,840 for further design.
Other resolutions would:
• Award a $187,940 contract with Tate General Contractors, Inc., to renovate the animal control facility.
• Pay Pickering Firm, Inc., up to $244,769.86 for professional engineering services for the South Caraway Road Widening project.
• Award a $215,000 contract with W. William Graham Jr., Inc., do engineer rail improvements in the Craighead Technology Park.
• Set a public hearing on a proposal by P & H Investments LLC to abandon a portion of a drainage easement at 2303 E. Parker Road.
The council will hear the first of three required readings of the following proposed ordinances that would:
• Abandon a utility easement at Red Wolf Corner, 2316 Red Wolf Blvd., requested by Erving Ridge Consulting and Development, LLC.
• Rezone 5.73 acres of a 30-acre tract at 3506 Southwest Drive from R-1 single family residential to C-3 general commercial with a limited use. If approved it would become part of the 118-acre planned development known as Southern Hills Addition, which will offer a mix of residential, professional and retail uses.
The council will hear the second readings of proposed ordinances that would:
• Approve relocation of a private club restaurant from 1900 Aggie Road to 401 W. Huntington Ave. for North Hills Social Club, which would now be doing business as Porch Thirty Social Club.
• Adopt a cottage housing style of housing for Jonesboro, that would authorize construction of smaller detached housing constructed in clusters surrounding a central village green. Cottage homes would be built in clusters of four with a maximum of 12 under the proposal.
The council will meet at 5:30 p.m. Due to the coronavirus pandemic the meeting will be conducted online with only essential officials admitted into the meeting room. The meeting will be broadcast on FacebookLive and Suddenlink Channel 24. Another online option is Jonesboro.Legistar.com to watch live or recorded video and view agendas.
Residents and interested parties can participate either by sending email to Council Comments@jonesboro.org or calling 870-336-7248 when agenda items are being discussed.