The April City Council meeting was called to order April 10 at 7:05 p.m. by Mayor Jim Collins. City Council member Eloy Salazar was absent. The Bent County Historical Society’s financial request from the March Meeting was discussed and additional information was presented by members Kathleen Tomlin and Bill Baublits.

Mayor Collins reported that the Urban Renewal Authority would be reinstated and a new board appointed.

Letters of interest for appointment to the Las Animas/Bent County Library District Board were presented from Amanda Freeburg and Barbara Shively. Council will submit Barbara Shively’s name to the Bent County Commissioners.

The annual vaccinations for cats and dogs will be held May 12.

Superintendent of the Light and Power Board Ron Clodfelter gave his monthly report. Electricity usage has increased 8.3% in 2018 over the same period in 2017. Trees were cut down at 114 Locust Avenue at the request of Public Works. Board members went door to door last month to obtain citizen input on the electrical survey issue.  

Charmaine Tripp, City Clerk, and Ken Wagner presented their reports. Tom Alvarez, member of the Public Works Board, has resigned. Reorganization of the Board was discussed.

Senator Cory Gardner’s administrative assistant, Cathy Garcia, requested a list of abandoned houses with asbestos issues in Las Animas. Public Works Director Wagner had a list of more than 100 houses with asbestos problems. It appears there may be government funds available for the demolition of such houses.

Youth advisor Richard Gallegos reported on his future plans after high school graduation. He plans on pursuing a career in Radiology.

David Armstrong, city council member, reported the high school would be graduating 28 students in May. Janice Cline, Council member, reported the after school program has been suspended for restructuring.

Collins, newly appointed Director of the Lower Arkansas Valley Area Agency on aging, talked about viewing machines available for use by people with vision problems. The cost of each machine is approximately $3,000 and Collins believes money is available to place two or more machines in Las Animas. Bent County needs an advisory board for which Collins is looking for volunteers.

The Council then went into executive session with Rick Rigel, Arkansas River Power Authority representative, to determine matters subject to negotiations, etc.