Tuesday night's City Council meeting at the Municipal Building in downtown Sedalia led off with a financial update from City Administrator Kelvin Shaw.

He noted that sales tax figures are 4.1 percent over the same time period last year. In addition, the use tax is also up over the same time period in 2019.

After the presentation, a budget amendment was passed, moving Water Department postage funds to the General Fund. The move was made to match up where the expenditures are being recorded.

Changes were made to job descriptions for the Public Works Project Manager and the Finance Director.

City Council renewed a contract with the Tipton Correctional Center for a Supervised Work Release Program. The City has contracted for years with the Center, it was noted. The program allows non-violent inmates who are nearing the end of their sentences to transition back to the work force, and therefore become a productive member of society once again. At the same time, it provides a lower-cost public service to the City. Part of the agreement involves providing adequate supervision and transportation of the inmates.

Under Public Works, Phase 3 of the Deer Brook Villas housing unit project was annexed into the City on land contiguous to existing city limits. A public hearing was held at the previous Council meeting, allowing public comment on the proposed annexation. Dianne Simon, representing E. W. Thompson Inc., was the only speaker, who favored the ordinance to annex the land on Mitchell Road.

A change order was approved between the City and Hettinger Excavating, LLC, for a water systems improvement project. The company will add a new water main at 2nd and 3rd streets and Osage Avenue at a cost of $48,692.50.

Another change order was approved between the City and Poort Excavating, LLC, for storm drainage improvements. (Area 27). Poort will upsize a water drain north of Union Pacific Railroad at a cost of $24,188.

Council approved the sale of ground wood chips to Foster Brothers Wood Products, Inc., to free up space at the City's Materials Management Site on South Ingram for new yard waste residential drop-offs of tree debris from winter and spring storms. A price of $100 per load was negotiated.

Downtown Sedalia Streetscape Phase 4 was re-bid with approval from MoDOT. The winning bidder was Rhad A. Baker Construction, LLC, at a cost of $1,009,437. Phase 4 is the final phase of a multi-year improvement project on Ohio Avenue.

Third Ward Councilman Bob Cross questioned the selection of Baker Construction for the project, saying there were problems last time the firm was used, but he didn't elaborate.

"I hope we don't have any problems with them like we did in the past," Cross commented before voting in favor of Baker Construction.

Councilman Charles Lowe was absent from Tuesday night's 25-minute meeting, so all votes were seven yes, one absent.

Under Public Safety, a finalized version of the City's medical marijuana ordinance was presented to Council by City Attorney Anne Gardner for approval. Gardner previously presented numerous options at last Council meeting for consideration.

Shaw noted that Sedalia Police Chief Matt Wirt concurred with Gardner's final version of the ordinance, which will allow police to enforce the City's policy on medical marijuana.

Finally on the agenda, two liquor licenses were renewed, including Melissa Rath, dba Tiger Eagle Stop, 3415 E. Broadway, for packaged liquor and Sunday sales, $450; and Chris Robinson, dba Osage Gun & Pawn, 116 West Main, for packaged liquor, $150.

Council went into closed session following the regular public meeting, which was attended by fewer than 10 people in the audience Tuesday night.

Sedalia City Council meets again at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 3. The public is invited.