The city will continue its work on tree maintenance and training after it received an $8,000 Tree Resource Improvement and Maintenance, or TRIM, grant Monday from the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Mexico Parks and Recreation used a similar grant last year to help train city and county staff on tree management, risk assessment and best practices for trimming and removal of trees. This year’s grant will be used for similar training and education events.

A TRIM grant also can be used for conducting a tree inventory, hazardous tree removal and planting trees, among other projects, said Community Forester Ann Koenig with the conservation department.

“I’m so grateful that you all applied for one of our TRIM grants,” she said.

Amending an election

A capital improvement sales tax approved by voters in April requires an amendment before it goes into effect July 1. The one-half of 1% cent capital improvement sales tax was a continuance of what was already in place. The tax is used to finance improvements and construction of streets, curbs and gutters, storm sewers, bridges, drainage ditches and culverts and other capital improvements.

Information on the tax’s passage and what the tax would be used for was submitted to the state’s revenue department per state requirements.

“We were contacted by the department of revenue indicating that we had a reference in our original ordinance that they felt was identifying it as a potential city transportation sales tax trust fund,” City Manager Bruce Slagle said. “We wanted to be very clear that it was the continuation of the capital improvement sales tax.”

The state revenue department asked the city to amend the ordinance to clarify the intent of the tax. The amendment would remove any reference to a trust fund and would make it clear the tax is continuing capital improvement sales tax. The state initially thought the city was imposing both a transportation trust fund and a capital improvement sales tax, Slagle said.

The state revenue department is satisfied with the proposed amendment, Slagle said. The council read the amendment ordinance by title only twice and passed it with a quorum of three present council members. Members Chris Miller and Steve Nichols were absent from Monday’s meeting. The April election results still stand despite the needed amendment to the original ordinance.

 In other business:

• Mexico City Council approved an annual renewal with Mexico School District No. 59 to provide one full-time and one part-time school resource officers to protect district buildings.

• A temporary easement agreement with Sandra Johnson was approved by the council for the Holt Street reconstruction and sidewalk replacement. The city has received 22 out of 23 easements from property owners so work can be done as close to the original engineering plans as possible.

• After cleaning a 24-inch sewer main from Northeast Park to Dennis Azdell’s property, city staff discovered plant and tree roots in the line. Public Works is requesting to spend as much as $12,900 to treat 2,000 feet of sewer line for the roots and to help prevent regrowth. The foam chemical treatment is guaranteed for three years by Duke’s Root Control. The city has used Duke’s services in the past. Mexico City Council approved the proposal.