By Lindsay Starr Platt
Belton City Council met on Tuesday night at Harris Community Center for a regular meeting. All council members were present. First United Methodist Church made an announcement during Public Comments that the community is welcome to attend their Ice Cream Social on July 31 from 5:00-6:00 p.m. with a gospel concert following.
Special recognition went to Director of Finance Brandon Bozon and Assistant Director of Finance Susan Allamon for receiving the Certified Government Finance Officer designation. Bozon and Allamon were presented with a certificate and congratulated by attendees.
A proclamation was read by Mayor Marion Grayson for the 150th Anniversary of The Belton Journal. David Tuma, Publisher, The Belton Journal was handed the proclamation and urged attendees to check out this week’s paper and the special 150th Anniversary Edition.
“The Belton Journal’s news coverage has spanned the terms of 28 U.S. Presidents and also kept Belton residents informed of local droughts, floods, football games, City Council meetings, and a host of other news fit for print,” said Grayson.
Bozon also presented the Hotel/Motel Budget for Fiscal Year (FY) 2017. The projected budget for FY 2017 is $31,640.
“Texas Tax Code Chapter 351 allows the use of Hotel/Motel tax revenues for signage directing the public to sights and attractions that are visited frequently by hotel guests in the municipality,” said Bozon. “Proposed Signage Plan meets the statutory criteria as it will direct guests to downtown retail shops and restaurants.”
Judy Garrett, Director, Tourism, Belton Area Chamber of Commerce presented Belton Convention & Visitors Bureau 2015– 2016 Year in Review. Garrett said the projected total budget for tourism is $152,000.
“There will be conventions coming to Belton,” said Garrett.
Garret said the following will be coming to Belton; Mother Earth News Fair in February 2017, Central Texas Hog Rally, a comic book convention in August 2017 and an indoor arena football team, CenTex Fighting Calvary, will be playing at the Bell County Expo Center.
Matt Bates, Director, Parks and Recreation, City of Belton presented the annual goals and priorities of his department.
“All of our community garden slots are filled. Locking the park bathrooms at night has really helped with vandalism prevention, thank you to the Belton Police as well. Beal Park is just awesome, come check it out,” said Bates. “The Nature Trail will open in mid-August.”
Belton Public Library director Kim Kroll gave a presentation about the library’s goals. Lena Armstrong Library hopes to make more use out of the outdoor public space and utilize it for events. They are planning to create and outdoor park setting behind the library and have a Monarch Butterfly Garden. The library wants to increase its early literacy influence and promote the “1,000 Books Before Kindergarten” program.
“We want to have more homeschool programs. We have a lot of homeschoolers that use our library. The kids often come to see Lauren Gommert, the children’s librarian. They love her, they come to the library just to see her. They come to our library before going to Temple.”
Angellia Points, City Engineer and Director of Internal Services, City of Belton presented the upcoming goals of Internal Services and Engineering.
“There were some great projects this year. Connell Street Drainage and MLK Overpass are complete. River Fair will start on August 22 and Sparta Road Roundabout will begin in August as well,” said Points.