Hermiston Swears in Councilors

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Hermiston City Attorney Gary Luisi swears in Lori Davis, Jackie Myers, Clara B. Fitzgerald and Doug Smith at Monday night's Hermiston City Council meeting.

[quote style=”2″]Site Committee to Identify Location of New Senior Center[/quote]

Four Hermiston city councilors were sworn in Monday night, including the newest member, Doug Smith.

Smith was elected in May to succeed Frank Harkenrider who retired in December. Also sworn in Monday night were incumbents Jackie Myers, Lori Davis and Clara B Fitzgerald.

(FRIENDS SALUTE MR. HERMISTON)

Fitzgerald ran unopposed for George Anderson’s Ward II seat in May. Anderson announced in January that he would not be seeking another term on the council. But when he announced in June that he was stepping down before his term ended in December, it left an opening on the council. Fitzgerald was appointed in August to fill out the remaining months of Anderson’s term.

Also on Monday, the council voted to authorize Hermiston City Manager Byron Smith to accept a $2 million Community Development Block Grant for the construction of a new senior center. The city will own the building. Hermiston Parks and Recreation Director Larry Fetter, who has been spearheading the effort to secure funding for a new senior center, said a committee has been formed to find a location for the new center.

Among the sites being considered are the old Goodwill building on Hermiston Avenue, the former Sherrell Chevrolet building on Main Street, and a lot behind the Hermiston Conference Center.

As a condition of the grant funding, the building will be limited to use by citizens 60 and over for the first five years of operation. Following that period, the center will be open for other programs Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The council also passed an ordinance authorizing the issuance of up to $2.5 million in revenue obligations to the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality for the final funding piece of the city’s new wastewater treatment plant.

The original estimate for the cost of the project was $27.2 million. Finance Director Amy Palmer, however, said the bid for the project’s outfall came in less than expected. The latest estimate for the final overall cost is $26.2 million.

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