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Today is last Council meeting before new schedule starts

Agenda items include commission appointment, cleanup details by Tia Lyons | November 18, 2021 at 12:00 a.m.
El Dorado City Council is seen in this News-Times file photo.

The El Dorado City Council will convene for a regular meeting at 5:25 p.m. today in the Council Chamber of City Hall for the final meeting that will held before the council moves to one meeting per month.

Starting next month, the council will institute its new meeting schedule of 5 p.m. the second Thursday of the month.

During an El Dorado Water and Public Works Board meeting on Oct. 12, council members agreed to change its longstanding, regular meeting schedule of 5:30 p.m. on the first Thursday after the first Monday of the month and again two weeks later.

The council returned for a formal vote of 7 - 1 during its regular meeting on Oct. 21. Council Member Andre Rucks cast the lone no vote on the matter.

Council members are expected to vote today on a recommendation from the El Dorado Advertising and Promotion Commission to appoint Maria Simpson to fill a vacant seat commission.

Simpson is the general manager of The Haywood El Dorado hotel and she previously submitted an application to serve on the A&P commission.

The A&P commission is made up of seven members, two of whom must be members of the city council. Council members Dianne Hammond and Paul Choate currently serve on the commission.

Four members must represent the tourism/hotel/restaurant industries and one must be a member at large.

A&P commissioners forwarded their recommendation of Simpson to the city council for approval.

Due to the lack of a quorum, the council could not vote on the matter during a regular meeting Nov. 4.

Council Member Willie McGhee is also on the agenda to discuss long-running plans by the state to widen Hillsboro/U.S. 82B through El Dorado.

Also under new business on the council's agenda is a discussion about scheduled time off for city employees during the holiday season, specifically Christmas.

Mayor Veronica Smith-Creer previously noted that the holiday falls on Saturday this year and employees are typically off on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Per the city employee handbook, if a paid holiday falls on Saturday, then employees are off the preceding Friday.

If the holiday is on Sunday, then the following Monday serves as employees' paid holiday off.

With the 2021 holiday dates, city employees would be off and administrative offices closed on Dec. 23 and 24 (Thursday and Friday), giving city employees four successive days off.

Smith-Creer is also expected to provide more details about a citywide cleanup that is scheduled for Saturday.

She previously said community cleanups were being planned on the Saturday before Thanksgiving and the Saturday before Christmas to help spruce up the city for the holidays and for out-of-town visitors, including El Dorado natives who are returning home to spend the festive season with their families.

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