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Hope Star - Hope, AR
  • Massanelli honored for commission service

  • Hope Mayor Dennis Ramsey was almost at a loss for words Tuesday night as he recognized local businessman Vic Massanelli's 22 years of service as a member of the Hope Planning and Zoning Commission.
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  • Hope Mayor Dennis Ramsey was almost at a loss for words Tuesday night as he recognized local businessman Vic Massanelli's 22 years of service as a member of the Hope Planning and Zoning Commission.
    Vic, we really are very reluctant to do this,” Ramsey said during the presentation at the Hope City Board of Directors meeting. “But, for 22 years all you get is a plaque. We appreciate you doing this for 22 years on Planning and Zoning; and, that has got to be a record.”
    He commended Massanelli's willingness to make tough decisions.
    You know a lot of times when you come to the meeting that half the room is going to be for you and half the room is not going to be happy with the decisions that you make,” Ramsey said. “We do appreciate you and the commissioners for the contribution you make; it's very important.”
    Commission Chairman and City Director Doodle Franklin said he had been proud to serve with Massanelli.
    He has always got a question or two that's good information,” Franklin said. “I really appreciate your service.”
    Massanelli expressed his appreciation for the confidence shown his service.
    It's an honor to serve in any capacity at all; but, you always get more out of it than you put into it,” he said.
    Massanelli notified the board of his retirement from the commission earlier this month.
    After a five minute executive session called by Ramsey, the board returned and unanimously voted to appoint Robert Whitlock, B&R Building-South manager, Massanelli's son-in-law, to fill the vacancy.
    We appreciate his readiness to serve,” Ramsey noted after the vote.
    The board addressed a short agenda, approving a request by Hope Police Chief J. R. Wilson to accept a renegotiated bid for equipment for new police cars. Wilson said he included the bid for equipment and installation in the bids for the new cars.
    Page 2 of 2 - “It was not good; it was way over,” he said.
    Wilson said the bids returned with the low bid totaling $85,446 for the cars and equipment. The vehicles were bid at $44,994, but the equipment installed bid was $9,500 over budget. He said he was able to renegotiate the equipment costs to a total of $24,187, which combined with radar, MDT deck and AWIN equipment, was still $1,446 over budget.
    I don't think we're out of the ball park with this,” Wilson said.
    He said he would have preferred to have each car ordered with a “police package,” but that had become cost-prohibitive.
    But, we have been able to manage pretty well,” Wilson said.
    Director Don Still expressed concern that the separate equipment installations will cost more to maintain.
    If you have to pull it out, you have to rewire the whole thing every time,” Still said. But, he admitted that “police package” cars were becoming too costly.
    I don't think you're going to see a change; the costs are just going up and up,” he said.
    In other matters Tuesday, the board tabled an unscheduled zoning ordinance request for a variance from R2 to C3 for a church property at 1005 W. Fourth St. to convert part of the building to a radio studio and construct a radio tower on the property.
    City Manager Catherine Cook said the Planning and Zoning Commission had approved the request by Iglesia Fuente de Agua Viva and Francisco Salazar. Cook said an R2 designation does not allow for the construction of the tower.
    Franklin noted that only one inquiry had been made concerning it after Still asked whether any complaints had been registered.
    Franklin said the church group intended to construct a 90-foot radio tower on the property.
    Ramsey said the board was unfamiliar with the request and suggested it be tabled.

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