The city of Slater has taken a big step toward having a biomass plant in town, city council members learned at their meeting Tuesday evening, March 16.
Slater Mayor Stephen Allegri said the city was awarded a community development block grant for $239,000, which will be used for infrastructure improvements at the biomass plant, to be located at the northwest corner of the city's airport industrial park.
The funds will pay for installation of a 10-inch water line, a sewer line and the construction of two 40-feet truck entrances to the area from Route C. The city will construct and fund an electric line to the plant.
In total, construction of the plant is estimated at $3,500,000.
When completed, the biomass plant is expected to produce 13,000 tons of green fuel per year and employ 10 to 15 people over the next three years, according to a press release from the city.
"This'll be a great thing not only for the community, but there'll be a lot of incentives for the farmers, too," Allegri said.
In other new business, Allegri announced that the city has also received a Wastewater and Water Treatment Efficiency grant through Energize Missouri Communities, part of the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, for $23,294. The funds will be used to attach variable frequency drives on the sewer plant's rotors, which will be more energy efficient.
The city's annual Steve McQueen Days are scheduled for April 23-24, and one new aspect of the event has already been tarnished. The signs designating part of Highway 240 in McQueen's memory, which are to be dedicated during the Days, have been shot through with high-powered rifles, Allegri said.
Although the signs are under Missouri Department of Transportation's jurisdiction, he said, "If we find out who's responsible, we're going to push for prosecution on it."
Expressing concern for public safety, he added, "There are residents on the other sides of those signs."
The owners of Slater's new restaurant, Doc's Tators and Tunes, were also present at the council meeting. Pam and Darrell Paul are renovating what was formerly R Bar and hope to open their restaurant by April 1, they said.
Council members Terry Jordan, Cathie Jeffries, Ruby Romine, Matt Campbell and Harry Lightfoot were present at the meeting. They adjourned into executive session to discuss legal and real estate matters.
The council is scheduled to meet again Tuesday, April 6, at 7 p.m. at City Hall.