By Nick Worth
An ordinance establishing fees for city-run events received its first reading Tuesday night at the Holbrook City Council meeting.
According to the ordinance, participant fees for events would be:
* $25 for ages 17 and under.
* $30 for early bird registration 30 days prior to the event for ages 18 and over.
* $40 for ages 18 and over.
* $20 vendor fee for one-day events.
* $40 vendor fee for two-day events.
* $10 electric fee per day, if needed.
After Councilman Myron Maxwell said he did not think blanket fees should be established, City Clerk Cher Reyes told the council that blanket fees are needed.
“We need to be able to tell people what the cost is,” Reyes said.
City Finance Director Randy Sullivan said the ordinance will cover such city-run events as the proposed Mud Run, tentatively set for September.
In response to a question from the council, Sullivan explained that a mud run is a type of race, which incorporates an obstacle course with the running.
“Ours will be close to a 5-K,” Sullivan said.
City Manager Ray Alley added that the races have become extremely popular in recent years.
“The goal is not to make money on these,” Sullivan told the council. “The goal is to get backing from other non-profits in the city.”
Sullivan explained to The Tribune-News that non-profit groups in town and others, such as the high school sports teams, could volunteer by manning the events, building obstacles or performing other tasks. Costs for the event such as insurance and T-shirts for the participants would then come out of the proceeds, with the non-profit group or team receiving the rest of the proceeds.
“It would be a good way for them to do a fundraiser,” Sullivan said.
He noted that other events are being planned by Community Tourism and Event Coordinator Kathleen Smith.
Smith told The Tribune-News she is planning a Spirit of 66 Festival on Aug. 8 and 9 which will include a soap box derby, among other events, and a 50-mile bike race departing from the Hopi Travel Plaza on Sept. 20.
The ordinance will received a second reading and be voted on at the next city council meeting on Tuesday, April 22.
In other action April 8, the council:
* Heard a report from Alley, who said the street crews are patching roads. He noted that the crews are working on Heywood Avenue and will start on Erie Street next.
Alley also said concrete work will start on the east end dog park next week. He added that water department crews have been working on repairs to the lift stations throughout town.
He then told the council the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers inspected the Holbrook levee.
“They said it was in the best shape of all the levees they’ve inspected,” Alley told the council. “They said ‘Don’t change what you’re doing.’
“I have to give kudos to Tim Kelley,” Alley said. “He’s doing a great job with the levee.”
* Heard a report from Police Chief Mark Jackson, who told the council there are only three weeks left of police academy for three recruits.
“They’ll graduate on May 6,” Jackson said. He added that another recruit will enter the police academy in Phoenix on May 5.
“The police department is overworked right now, but I’m not hearing any whining or complaining,” Jackson said. “I’m really proud of our officers.”
Jackson also reported the evidence room is in good shape, and that the police department has received four pickup trucks from the federal government, which are being repainted. He said one has been equipped with lights and other accessories donated from Navajo County surplus and will be used for the Volunteers In Police Service (VIPS) program volunteers.
“I’d like to give thanks to Navajo County for donating the equipment,” Jackson said.
* Adopted an ordinance amending the fees for non-resident users of the Holbrook Municipal Cemetery.
* Awarded a $1,500 donation to the 2014 Drug Free Grad Night event.
* Approved a resolution adopting a fair housing policy.
Councilman Richard Peterson voiced his concern with the fact that the policy requires the city to help anyone claiming discrimination in housing practices.
“I’m concerned that the power of government could be used against a citizen who would then have to defend himself against it,” Peterson said. “We don’t have the right to judge the merits of the case. It’s too open-ended.”
Having expressed his misgivings, Peterson voted to approve the resolution, making the vote unanimous.
* Adopted a resolution approving the Police Volunteer Program standard operating procedures.
* Approved the contract with Blue Hills Environmental Association, Inc. for hauling city bins to the landfill. The bid was awarded to Blue Hills at the last council meeting.
By Nick Worth