By Chris Edwards
WOODVILLE – At its regular meeting on Thursday, Oct. 19 of the Ivanhoe City Council, mayor Skip Blackstone kicked off his regular report to the council by noting that a lot was going on within the city.
Blackstone reported to council on several repair projects and grant opportunities on the nearby horizon. He spoke first about a $1.93 million Community Block Development Grant (CBDG), which is funded through the state’s General Land Office (GLO).
Blackstone said the city was eligible for the grant, which will cover street improvements along Lakewood Drive. “We are now in a position to begin planning and moving forward,” he said.
Currently, he said, the Camelot Dam is under repair, and roadwork is ongoing, with paving being done from Ivanhoe Drive up to Charmaine Drive.
He brought another addition to the council, which includes Charmaine Drive South up to Durwood, which was bid from Texas Materials at a cost of $18,379. The funds, he said, would come from the remaining $75K the city has in its bond fund, and work would start on Friday, if approved. The council approved the addition.
Blackstone also provided an update on the $7.9 million GLO grant, which is to fund multiple projects throughout the city. Contracts have already been let, he said, and the city is ready to proceed.
Another topic on Thursday’s agenda was the burn ban. Currently, Tyler County is back under a ban, and Blackstone said that he takes full responsibility for not following the brief lift of the burn ban that the county undertook.
Currently, the burn ban is back on, having been ratified in Commissioners Court on Monday. Blackstone asked council to revert the city’s policy on burn bans to go back in sync with the way the county does it, in order to cut down on confusion and consternation.
“We were well within our rights of not lifting it [with the county],” he said, but added that it caused a great deal of confusion.