by Hunter Dawkins

Following a short notice, Long Beach Mayor George Bass let the Friendly City’s Board of Aldermen (BOA) know that a railroad crossing and sidewalk closure needed to happen at last Tuesday’s virtual meeting due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) global pandemic.  Mayor Bass notified the BOA the railroad company; CSX, informed the Pickering Firm that the Beatline Project would need closure of these crossings at the current board meeting to move forward.  Therefore, the Long Beach BOA unanimously chose to close the crossing at White Harbor Road and the sidewalk crossing at Burke Avenue.

This choice was met with deliberation from Alderman Ron Robertson, who made a substitute motion to close the crossing at White Harbor Road and the crossing at Girard Avenue as an alternate in case the sidewalk crossing at Burke Avenue is not accepted.  Members of the board voted this proposal down and chose the original plan.

Before the discussion, the city BOA awarded the National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Drainage Project to JLB Contractors for over $500K to work on three roads in Long Beach.  Once the contract was awarded, the board chose to not adopt an ordinance for emergency or hazard pay.

In other actions a few items were tabled, including the Environmental Impact Study of the Beatline Parkway Project and traffic study of the intersection between Klondyke & Commission Roads until the May 5 meeting.

Finally, the Long Beach BOA chose to approve the removal of a live oak tree located at 3027 Sea Oats Drive after a Tree Removal Request was submitted by DSLD Homes Gulf Coast and adopted an increased repair to the Pineville Road/Royal Drive area for Asphalt Repairs/Overlays.

The last discussion came about the new high school parking lot under construction whereas the BOA authorized the paving per the following recommendation of City Engineer David Ball.  Ball’s letter to the city stated, “I recommend that the City issue a purchase order for the overlay of the high school parking lot upon coordination with the school district. I estimate this could cost approximately $155,000.”

The next Long Beach Board of Aldermen meeting is scheduled for May 5 at 5pm.  Any information about public attendance or digitally again, please call (228)863-1556.