Meeting for the first time in their new 6 p.m. time slot on Monday, the Chester City Council started 2017 by approving a major repair to one of the city"s water lines.
The council authorized Red Dot Construction to repair a 500-foot section of 12-inch pumping line from the Chester water treatment plant to the water tower.
The cost of the project was not stated during the meeting, but Chester Mayor Tom Page told media afterward that it is estimated to be in the ballpark of $80,000.
"We can"t get prices until they dig into it and see how much it"s gonna cost," Page said.
In a similar way to the water line, the council authorized repairs to the city"s bucket truck, with the aldermen and woman once again waiting to see what the bill will be.
Prior to discussing new business, the council heard from its department chiefs in Chester Police Chief Ryan Coffey and Fire Chief Marty Bert.
Coffey informed the council that fallen CPD officer and volunteer firefighter James Brockmeyer - who was fatally injured during a police chase in October - will be honored by the Southern Illinois Police Chiefs Association and Southwest Illinois Law Enforcement Commission during a meeting in Fairview Heights on Jan. 18.
Both Page and Coffey are expected to attend.
Coffey also updated the council on efforts to replace the squad car Brockmeyer was driving that night, which was totalled in the accident and part of the CPD"s part-time fleet.
He said he would look to the Missouri Highway Patrol for finding a discount surplus vehicle.
"It looks like prices are near what they were the last time we got one from them several years ago," Coffey said.
Coffey also noted that he had asked the city"s police commissioners to begin testing for a new eligibility list for a full-time officer.
Additionally, he said that he planned to release information on recent drug arrests in the last month in the beginning of next week, and was prevented from doing so earlier due to "tactical" reasons.
After the council meeting, Coffey said that information would be released to media as well.
Bert told the council the CFD responded to six calls for service in December, bringing the total number to 93 for 2016. The biggest call was the now-famous Falcon Foam industrial fire in Perryville.
The CFD, which was paged for mutual aid on the Dec. 8 blaze, was one of 20 departments from five counties to respond to the fire that destroyed six buildings and was the largest in the history of the Perryville Fire Department.
All three Falcon Foam employees on scene made it out safely and firefighters suffered mainly slip and fall injuries due to freezing water.
• The council approved bills and payroll in the amount of $27,934.21.
• The council reviewed the minutes of its previous executive sessions and approved keeping them sealed from the public.
"The need for confidentiality still exists," said City Attorney Jeff Kerkhover.
• The council reviewed the records of its closed sessions and decided against destroying any.