Although governments large and small are facing hard times, the city of Slater is in "excellent financial condition," Mayor Stephen Allegri said in his State of the City address at the city council meeting Tuesday evening, Feb. 2.
In 2009, the city accomplished quite a list of things, Allegri said: sewer plant improvements, a new lawn mower for the cemetery, a new walking trail in the park, a new storm siren and continued street maintenance. Of the 27 goals council members set for 2009, 16 were completed or are in the process of being accomplished.
For the current year, Allegri said the launch of Saline County E911 Dispatch Center will save the city about $50,000. He said three new businesses will be coming to Slater's downtown as well.
"2010 is an exciting and challenging and promising year," Allegri said.
He added, "I love this town and all it has to offer. I ask all of us to help support our retailers ... supporting them is an investment in our community."
Allegri asked council members to come up with new goals for 2010 and bring them to the next council meeting.
The council also reviewed the Slater Police Department's annual report on racial profiling.
A total of 155 traffic stops were made in 2009, resulting in 56 citations and 92 warnings.
"It looks like the number of stops are down," Allegri said. "Crime is down in Slater."
Of those people stopped, 87 were male and 68 were female. The majority of people stopped were white, 137, and 16 black individuals were stopped.
In other business, Allegri said the city was awarded a grant from Missouri Department of Conservation for six new radios and 10 new pagers for the fire department.
The total cost is $5,638, and the grant will cover $2,819.
These new devices will work better with Saline County's new 911 system, Assistant City Administrator Gene Griffith said.
Council member Ron Monnig spoke briefly to the council about a census meeting he attended.
"It's very important that our citizens in all of our communities participate in it," he said.
According to statistics from the meeting, Monnig said that, for every 100 people not counted, a community risks losing a total of $1.2 million over 10 years.
Plus, Monnig said, the census count in Missouri could impact the number of U.S. Congressmen representing the state, potentially reducing it from nine to eight.
The council adjourned into executive session to discuss legal matters.
Council members Terry Jordan, Cathie Jeffries, Ruby Romine, Brownell Bryant, Harry Lightfoot and Brett Hemeyer were also present at the meeting.
The council will meet again Tuesday, Feb. 16, at 7 p.m.