Council moves forward on storm shelter, fire station
by Jennifer Cohron
Feb 27, 2014 | 1476 views | 0 0 comments | 39 39 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CORDOVA — On Tuesday, the Cordova City Council approved the match money necessary to proceed with the construction of a community storm shelter.

The total cost of the project is more than $100,000. The federal government will be responsible for $75,437, and $20,000 will be provided by the Walker Area Community Foundation.

The remaining match money required of the city will be $5,145.

The shelter will be located near Mount Zion Baptist Church. Council members voted Tuesday to name the shelter after District 1 representative Warren Branch, who spearheaded the project.

The county was approved for 21 community shelters after the April 27, 2011, tornadoes. The first shelters were installed this week in Thach and Nauvoo.

Each shelter is designed to accommodate up to 100 people and to withstand an EF5 tornado.

The city was also approved for a second shelter to be located on property near the site of the old Cordova High School.

Long-term recovery manager Steve Ostaseski said the approval of the state Board of Education is still needed before construction of that shelter can move forward.

Also on Tuesday, the council agreed to purchase property on School Street for the construction of a fire station. The city bought the home of the late Paul Love for $85,000.

Cordova Fire and Rescue has been without a permanent home since the April 2011 tornadoes.

“I think we could probably close by mid March and get a design professional in here to team up with us, hopefully at a discounted rate. If we get that done, we could probably see construction in late summer,” Mayor Drew Gilbert said.

In other action, the council:

•appointed Larry Sides to the District 5 seat recently vacated by Stephen Tidwell. Sides and Annie Stacks submitted applications to fill the seat. After Gilbert opened the topic for discussion, council member Lauren Vance made a motion to appoint Stacks. The motion died for lack of a second.

The motion to appoint Sides passed 5-1, with Vance casting the dissenting vote.

•approved a $100 donation to RUFF Animal Rescue, a local nonprofit. Gilbert agreed to match the donation with $100 from the Mayor’s Fund. The group has been in the city recently picking up stray animals.

•agreed to send three police officers to Special Weapons and Tactics training in April at a cost of $300.