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Citywide yard sale, cleanup week scheduled

The dates for the 2022 citywide yard sale and spring cleanup week are set. The citywide yard sale will be held on April 7, 8, and 9. Yard sale permit fees will be waived during the three-day event. The spring cleanup week will then be held April 11 through 15. The pickup schedule for spring cleanup items will be on the resident’s normal trash pick-up day. 

This annual event will give residents an opportunity to clean up around their property and have most items hauled away free of charge. Waste should be separated into five categories:

To have tires picked up, call the sanitation department at 255-2330 or city hall at 256-7176 and leave your name and address.  Customers will be billed $2.00 each for passenger tire; $5.00 for each passenger tire on a rim.

To protect city workers from injury, all broken glass must be boxed and labeled. Small clean up items must also be bagged or boxed.

Items that will not be collected include any waste that is considered hazardous such as asbestos, waste from major demolition and renovation jobs, and items piled onto trailers or trucks. 

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Coffee with the Mayor scheduled for Friday

The public is invited to attend the second Coffee with the Mayor event and discuss city happenings with City of West Plains Mayor Mike Topliff from 7 to 8 a.m., Friday, March 4 at the West Plains Civic Center – Redbud Room.

“Coffee with the Mayor” will be held the first Friday at each month.

“Some of the best ideas and conversations are had over a cup of coffee,” said Topliff. “This is an opportunity to hear directly from community members and discuss projects, plans and everyday life.”

In addition to the Mayor, City Administrator Sam Anselm and other city directors, department leads and employees will be on hand.

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City Council to vote on utility rate increase

A first reading for proposed utility rate increases that would be used to maintain existing utility services was approved by West Plains City Council Tuesday night, with a second reading and final vote on the four bills to be held at the March 21 city council meeting.

If approved in March, new rates for electric, water, sewer and sanitation will go into effect on April 1. Rates for water and sewer were last changed in 2013, and the electric rates have remained unchanged since 2016. However, utility operational costs for the city since that time have outpaced the revenues generated from its customers, and additional regulatory requirements for water and sewer utilities are driving the need for increased investments.

Because the increases have both a flat rate and usage component, the increase will be different for each household. The city estimates the increase to range from $8.06 to $20.74 per month, depending on weather-related usage. To arrive at these estimates, the city compared a sample of bills including a young couple (20’s), a family with children, a middle-aged couple with a child still living at home (3 occupants), a single senior (70+), and a senior couple (70+).

Anticipating critical utility infrastructure needs over the next 30 years, the city received a grant in 2021 to fund the development of an Integrated Management Plan, which has charted a 30-year path to implement the necessary infrastructure improvements in a more affordable and sustainable method for the city and its citizens. As part of this plan, the rates for each of the four utilities are being realigned to ensure that each utility is not only covering its expenses but can fund the infrastructure improvements needed in the future.

The city council will vote on the second reading of the bills at the March 21 City Council meeting. A public comment session will be held at 5 p.m. prior to the regular March meeting.

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Full slate of events scheduled for the Civic Center

A number of events are planned for the West Plains Civic Center for February into spring and throughout the upcoming summer; including concerts, performances, and trade shows.

“I am excited to be starting 2022 off with a full slate for our Spring 2022 season,” said Civic Center Director Eryn Walters. “We have a lot of our annual events coming back this year, some have been reimagined, and plenty of new events that we are bringing to the building for our patrons to experience.”


The event schedule through March is as follow:

11-FebCubanisms Concert7pmTheater
12-FebJonathan Erlandson-Magican7pmTheater
Feb 11-12TLR Gun and Knife Show9a-5p  and 10a-3pArena/Exhibit Hall
25-FebChris Janson Concert7pmArena
4-MarEimear Arkins Concert7pmTheater
March 4-5Southern MO Home Builder’s Assoc. Home and Garden Show3p-7p and 8a-5pArena/Exhibit Hall
March 10-11MSHSAA District Band ConcertTBACivic Center
12-MarStars Foundation Present’s Irish Dancing1pmTheater
12-MarBrewfest5:30pmArena
15-MarAmerican Red Cross Blood Drive9amExhibit hall
19-MarCystic Fibrosis Benefit Concert5:30pmArena
25-MarFolklorefest7pmTheater
March 25-26PC Junk Vintage Market12p-6 and 9a-3pmArena/Exhibit Hall

Learn more by visiting www.civiccenter.net or by following the West Plains Civic Center on Facebook.

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Downtown Fire

Court Square in downtown West Plains will be closed until at least 11 a.m. this morning (2/1) due to an early fire on Main Street. Certain areas downtown could remain closed longer.

West Plains Fire Department personnel arrived on scene at approximately 3 a.m. The fire was extinguished by 7 a.m. but cleanup is expected to last most of the day.

The fire is under investigation.

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Stay Safe and Healthy This Winter

Winter is here.

Winter temperatures can be dangerous. Stay safe and healthy by planning ahead. The following are recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and City of West Plains Emergency Management Director Stephen Monticelli:

Prepare Your Home

• Install weather stripping, insulation, and storm windows.

• Insulate water lines that run along exterior walls.

• Clean out gutters and repair roof leaks.

• Check your heating systems.

• Inspect and clean fireplaces and chimneys.

• Have your heating system serviced professionally to make sure it is clean, working properly, and ventilated to the outside.

• Install a smoke detector. Test batteries monthly and replace them twice a year.

• Have a safe alternate heating source and alternate fuels available.

• Prevent carbon monoxide (CO) emergencies. Install a CO detector to alert you to the presence of this deadly, odorless, colorless gas. Check the batteries when you change your clocks in the fall and spring.

• Learn symptoms of CO poisoning: headache, dizziness, weakness, upset stomach, vomiting, chest pain, and confusion.

Prepare Your Car

• Service the radiator and maintain antifreeze level; check tire tread or, if necessary, replace tires with all-weather or snow tires.

• Keep gas tank full to avoid ice in the tank and fuel lines.

• Use a wintertime formula in your windshield washer.

• Prepare a winter emergency kit to keep in your car in case you become stranded. The kit should include: blankets, food and water, flares, tire pump, and a bag of sand or cat litter (for traction), compass and maps, flashlight, battery-powered radio, and extra batteries, first-aid kit, and plastic bags.

Take these simple preparations now so you may enjoy a safe and healthy winter season.

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City of West Plains releases snow clearing routes

Due to this morning’s (01/06) accumulated snowfall, the City of West Plains Street Department has released its snow clearing routes and urges safety and caution for its citizens.To view an aerial map with the designated snow routes highlighted, people can visit: gis.westplains.net and click on the “snow routes” tab. Street Department crews will focus first on clearing the main roadway throughout West Plains. The Missouri Department of Transportation is responsible for clearing state-owned roadways including Business 63, Highway 63, Independence Drive, and Porter Wagoner Blvd.

The city will ensure that public parking lots at the West Plains Civic Center, West Plains Public Library, and the West Plains Senior Center will be cleared.

If temperatures drop below 20 degrees, city crews will not apply road salts and ice control mix, which are largely ineffective in the extreme cold.

The West Plains Police Department has reported a number of winter weather-related accidents and urge the public to stay home, if at all possible.

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City offices closed; trash routes changed in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day

The West Plains City Hall and other city offices will be closed Monday, January 17 in observance of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. Regular business hours will resume Tuesday, January 18.

Monday, January 17 refuse routes will run on Tuesday, January 18 with no other routes affected.

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City Council approves library agreement, selects all-inclusive park bids

The West Plains City Council met in regular session Tuesday, January 18. During the meeting, the council approved a cooperative agreement between the city and the West Plains Public Library Board of Trustees and selected bids for all-inclusive playground equipment.

The council unanimously approved Resolution 2022-01, a resolution to approve the library-city cooperative agreement. You can read the agreement here à https://westplains.gov/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/Library-cooperative-agreement.pdf

“This agreement helps solidify the partnership between the City of West Plains and the Library Board of Trustees, who have worked together for many years to provide the best library possible for the residents of West Plains,” said City of West Plains Community Services Director Todd Shanks. “It is our hope this relationship continues for many years to come.”

The city then heard bids for equipment and materials needed to complete the city’s planned all-inclusive park at People’s Park.

The council selected bids from local businesses Indian Creek Materials for gravel and Stewart-Morrison Redi-Mix for concrete. The council selected a bid from Play and Park Structures of Chattanooga, Tennessee for the all-inclusive equipment.

“Play and Park Structures put together a fantastic proposal, and they have a successful track record of working with parks departments throughout Missouri,” said Shanks. “We are excited to begin working with them as they start the design process for the next phase of the park.”

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Applications being accepted for Community Development Grant

The City of West Plains has opened the application period for the Community Development Grant Program. This grant program utilizes funds from the City of West Plains Hotel/Motel Tax to promote tourism and economic development in West Plains. Any event/organization/project whose objective is to promote tourism and economic development in West Plains is eligible to apply. The event or project must be completed between April 1, 2022 and December 31, 2022. The Tourism Advisory Council will review applications and make recommendations to the City Council for grant awards.

Grant proposals will be received until 4:00 p.m. on February 25, 2022. It is anticipated that the Tourism Advisory Council will vote to make their recommendations to City Council in early March and the final vote will take place at the March City Council meeting. Funding should be available April 1, 2022. All grant expenditures must occur before the end of the fiscal year (December 31, 2022).

Grant applications are available at www.explorewestplains.com. Click on the link at the bottom of the homepage. Completed applications can be emailed to melissa.wharton@westplains.gov or dropped off or mailed to the Ozarks Heritage Welcome Center located at 2999 Porter Wagoner Blvd., West Plains. The center is open Monday-Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. For more information, contact Melissa Wharton, Tourism Coordinator, at 417-256-8835.

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