Demopolis council pledges support for airport project

Demopolis’ City Council pledged to match a federal grant up to $51,000 for improvements at the Demopolis Municipal Airport Thursday.

Airport Director Jason Pendergrass asked permission to apply for grant to be used toward continued maintenance and improvements at the airport. The city must be willing to match five percent of the total grant if it is awarded. The city’s portion would be $51,000 on the grant of just over $1 million.

Pendergrass said the work is necessary in order to continue ongoing maintenance, as well as widening of the taxiway. “This meets our long-range goals and puts us in a good position,” Pendergrass told the council, adding that the cost of project may be less than estimated, which would reduce the city’s obligation.

The council unanimously approved Pendergrass’ request.

The council, holding its twice-monthly meeting at Rooster Hall, also unanimously passed the Ordinance Enforcement Ordinance after a final reading and opportunity for public comment (there was none). The ordinance provides stiffer penalties for property owners who allow their lots to become overgrown, dilapidated or cluttered with debris.

In other matters, the council unanimously voted to re-zone property at 1105 Hwy. 80 West (next to Wal-Mart) from R-2 to business/light industrial, heard City Attorney Bill Poole report that Eaves Construction will begin demolition and removal of dilapidated houses at 1814 A Street and 1801 Second Avenue as early as Friday, and heard Mayor Mike Grayson report that four industrial recruitment projects are currently underway for both the city’s spec building and the port project.

The Mayor said he was not at liberty to offer specifics on the industrial prospects.

Grayson also said a search is underway to replace Demopolis Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Jenn Tate, who has resigned.