Louisiana State University AgCenter's Webster Extension office filled in an otherwise slim agenda at Tuesday's Webster Parish Police Jury meeting with thanks and an introduction.
"I'm happy today to announce our new county agent, Cliff Rainwater," extension agent Joan Almond said. "Cliff is a native of Morehouse Parish and has been working in Morehouse in the school system. He's working primarily with youth audiences – he'll be the 4-H youth development agent."
While Rainwater currently resides in Monroe, he said a move to Webster is likely in his future.
"I've only been working within the community for roughly a month now, but I have to say that it has been one of the warmest receptions I have ever received," he said. "I have found no reason why I could not become a member of this community based on the warm reception I have received."
Rainwater passed the floor to extension agent Lisa Holmes, who thanked the jury for helping provide a home to the 4-H shooting sports program.
"I'm here to publicly thank the jury for what you have done to support our programs," she said. "Specifically today our shooting sports program."
According to Holmes, prior to an effort by shooting sports and 4-H parent Richard Desadier the program had been spread around the parish.
"People are shooting in their backyards," she said. "They're storing their equipment in their garages or at our office, and switching stuff back and forth. I wanted to thank you for this opportunity to use this land out by the landfill.
"We are going through growing pains with the number of kids that want to be involved and the number of instructors," Holmes continued. "It's a family-oriented project. It is the largest 4-H project in the state, as far as enrollment is concerned."
WPPJ president Charles Walker pledged continuing support.
"This is something that we all wanted," he said. "It didn't happen overnight. No other way that we could use [the land] would benefit more people than the shooting range. Whatever you need – if it's in our realm of what we can afford."
In other business:
Evergreen Volunteer Fire Department received concurrence for purchase of two new pump trucks.
Advertisement for 2013 material bids was approved.
A mowing contract with Wilson Landscaping LLC and a striping contract with Nation Services Company, Inc. were both extended and the current rates.
A sidecutting proposal was passed on in favor of using the funds to accomplish the work internally.
Repair or replacement of a Shongaloo culvert on Red Oak Road using municipality funding were approved pending a determination of necessity.
Approval was given for work around the Catalpa water well in Dubberly. Six to eight feet of a fence row will be cleaned, a curve at Brushwood Drive and Catalpa Drive will be repaired and three to four dead trees will be cut on Brushwood – all with municipality funding.
Purchase and installation of new city limit signs for Dubberly with municipality funding were approved.
A request for permission to go onto private property was approved for removal of a dead tree on Willow Road. The tree is in the parish right-of-way, however, access to the tree is only through private property.
Pending proper paperwork and time permitting, repair work will be done on Carey Lane in Heflin using municipality funding.
A fence and gate will be installed at the landfill shooting range site, using discretionary funds of juror Jim Bonsall.
The January 2013 meetings were moved from Tuesday January 1 to Tuesday January 8.