Archive for the ‘City of Ruston’ Category

Tarbutton Interchange Construction Seen Soon


The long-delayed interchange at Tarbutton Road and Interstate 20 should see construction starting by late summer, City of Ruston Mayor Ronny Walker told Lincoln Parish News Online (LPNO) at last night’s meeting of the city’s Board of Aldermen. Construction will last up to three years, Walker said.

The council approved a resolution to employ Beast Engineering of Benton to oversee inspection of the project.

Also approved was a resolution added to the agenda that authorized supplemental funding for the project.

During discussion of that resolution, Walker said that the bids had come in over budget, and that the city would make up some of the overage. Bids

Said Walker, “We had $14 million on state funds, $4 million on federal funds. The bid came in $7 million and change above that. The state called and said if we can split this, we can come up with some money. Fortunately, we had already put a little over $4 million in the budget from the TID funds that we just bonded out – the $34 million – so we had funds available.”

Another project that received the go-ahead was replacement of the Colvin Creek bridge on East Kentucky Avenue.

That project is set to begin with the next month or so, with the actual bridge construction during the summer. Kentucky Avenue will be closed for about 5 weeks, but should be open for traffic before schools start in August.

Cost of the project is about $1.35 million.

City to Purchase More Rec Property


Ruston’s City Council will be asked to approve the purchase of more land for the planned sports complex on South Farmerville Street. United Methodist Children’s Home owns the 13.14 acre parcel (no. 36183167001) just south of the Lifecare Specialty Hospital.

According to the resolution, the purchase price will be for “an amount not exceeding the appraised value, assemblage value, use value or just compensation value.”

See here the resolution.

Also, a new ordinance will be introduced that will outlaw the use of “airguns, air rifles, and blowguns” within the city limits.

From the proposed ordinance:

The use, firing, shooting and explosion of airgun, air rifles and blowguns within the city are declared to be a nuisance, and it shall be unlawful for any person to use, fire, shoot or explode airguns, air rifles or blowguns within the city limits.

The council meeting is set for 5:30 PM, Monday, March 6 at Ruston City Hall, 401 North Trenton.

Here is the agenda.

Council Approves Rec Property Purchase


Ruston taxpayers will soon spend slightly over $1 million to purchase three parcels of land totaling about 29.4 acres on South Farmerville Street for development of a proposed recreational complex.

The city’s Board of Aldermen approved unanimously at last night’s meeting the purchase of 14.47 acres from the Campus Community Assembly of God (parcel no. 36183000093) for about $818,000.

According to Mayor Ronny Walker, the property itself was appraised for about $230,000, and the building was valued at about $588 thousand. Walker said that the church building would be utilized as a new office for the the Ruston Parks and Recreation Department.

The church is located at 2505 South Vienna, and the property extends from South Vienna (US 167) eastward to South Farmerville Street.

Also approved was purchase of two parcels from Ruston Girls Softball Association (36183119795 & 36183954349), totaling about 14.9 acres. That price was about $235 thousand, City Attorney Bill Carter said.

Those two parcels are on the east side of South Farmerville, near the intersection of Ball Park Road.

Earlier, the council heard from Wastewater Superintendent Keith Jeselink, who reported that a bid had been awarded to Jabar Corporation for sewer rehab on South Farmerville Street, Calvin Avenue, Oakdale Street, Jones Street, Taylor Street, and South Trenton.

The contract amount was about $980 thousand. An LCDBG grant will pay about $568 thousand of the cost, Jeselink said.

Ruston Board of Aldermen to Meet Monday


Ruston’s Board of Aldermen will meet Monday, February 6, 5:30 PM, Ruston City Hall, 401 North Trenton.

Here is the agenda.

Ruston’s $34 Million Bond Sale Plan Delayed


A plan by the City of Ruston’s administration to issue up to $34 million in bonds to be repaid from sales tax revenues was delayed at last night’s City Council meeting. The bonds are to help finance Walker’s Moving Ruston Forward project of street, drainage, sewer, and recreation improvements.

Mayor Ronny Walker said he would soon be meeting in Baton Rouge with state officials to clear up the problem.

Said Walker, “This has been something that has been going on for 24 years, the rules have been the same. All of a sudden last month they decided to change them a little bit, so we feel we are on firm footing as far as our contract with the state. We just want to go down and make sure all of the votes are there.”

Earlier, City Attorney Bill Carter said the administration would likely be coming back to the council for approval of the bond sale plan at the February meeting.

In other business, the council approved contracts for two significant street construction projects.

Amethyst Construction was awarded $2 million to complete the extension of Martin Luther King Drive from its intersection of South Farmerville Street eastward to intersect with Mills Avenue. The right of way has been cleared, and the project is expected to be completed late in 2017 or early 2018, depending upon the weather.

Mills Avenue will be expanded to three lanes all the way to its intersection with South Vienna Street, Paul Riley of Riley Engineering told Lincoln Parish News Online.

Also, Womack & Sons of Harrisonburg was low bidder for the $7.3 million extension of I-20 North Service Road East from Tractor Supply eastward to Rough Edge Road, just over 1 1/2 miles. This project will take up to three years to complete, it was said.

Ruston City Council Monday


Ruston’s Board of Aldermen will meet tomorrow (Monday, January 9), 5:30 PM, Ruston City Hall, 401 North Trenton.

Here is the agenda.

Several Cooperative Endeavor Agreements (contracts) will be considered by the board. The city contracts with several quasi-public entities, usually providing city-owned property and/or services and labor in return for some kind of community program.

See here who provides what:

Ruston Housing Authority
Ruston Dixie Baseball Association, Inc.
Ruston Girls Softball Association, Inc.
LTP Medical Mobile, Inc.
People Centered Support Services, Inc.
Boys and Girls Club of North Central Louisiana
Buddy Ball of Ruston, Inc.

City Council Approves Garbage Ordinance


As expected, Ruston’s Board of Aldermen approved unanimously a revised ordinance at last night’s meeting relative to the city’s collection of garbage, trash, and refuse.

Public Works Director Darryll Caraway said the final draft differed from what was originally introduced. One change is that since residential customers would receive pickup once weekly instead of twice, they could obtain a second container.

Mayor Ronny Walker also noted that changes were made in the procedure for commercial garbage pickup, as that part of the ordinance hadn’t been revised in some time.

In other business, the council approved several dozen budget amendments for the fiscal year ended 9/30/16. Notable was $567 thousand in spending for acquisition of industrial park property, $523 thousand for recycling, and $1.1 million in revenues from oil and gas property leases.

See here the complete list.

Ruston Board of Aldermen Monday


Ruston’s Board of Aldermen will meet tomorrow (Monday, December 5) at 5:30 PM, Ruston City Hall, 401 North Trenton.

Here is the agenda.

An ordinance relative to the city’s garbage and trash collection will be up for final adoption. A public hearing will held for input from any citizen who wishes to comment.

See here the final draft of the ordinance.

Weyerhaeuser Offices Return to Ruston


Weyerhauser, a Seattle, WA base wood products company will be consolidating several satellite offices around North Louisiana into a soon to be constructed buidling on a one acre lot at the corner of Jefferson Avenue and Hwy 167.

Weyerhauer formerly occupied the old Willamette Industries regional office building on Reynolds Drive, after its hostile takeover of Willamette in 2002. After downsizing in the late 2000’s during the recession, Weyerhaeuser located its remaining personnel into offices at Dodson and Taylor. Last year, it bought Plum Creek Timber, and the decision was made to build an office in Ruston.

Last night, the Ruston City Council approved sale of the city owned lot to Weyerhaeuser for half the appraised price, conditional that the company create at least 20 jobs within two years of the sale. If that condition wasn’t met, the company would be obligated to pay the full price, City Attorney Bill Carter said.

Asked Jim Pearce (Ward 4), “These 20 jobs created, they have to last the duration?” Carter said there was no time limit on the agreement.

The sale price was $140 thousand and the lot appraised for $280 thousand.

The council approved several budget amendments for the fiscal year ended 9/30/16.

Budget Amendment Ordinance
Requests for Budget Amendments

Finally, the council introduced an ordinance that may prove to be contentious with many Ruston homeowners. Among other things, curbside garbage pickup would be cut from twice a week to once a week.

See here the proposed ordinance.

A public hearing and final vote on the matter will be held at the December council meeting.

Ruston Board of Aldermen Monday


The City of Ruston’s Board of Aldermen will meet Monday, November 7, 5:30 PM, Ruston City Hall, 401 North Trenton.

Here is the agenda.