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City of Clay not holding fishing rodeo this year, adding fence to Cosby Lake peninsula

By Crystal McGough, copy editor

CLAY – Clay City Manager Ronnie Dixon announced during the Clay Council’s pre-council meeting Tuesday that the city would not be hosting its annual fishing rodeo this year. The annual event has been held at Cosby Lake since 2011.

“We’re not having the fishing rodeo this year because we expected we would be in the middle of dredging at this point,” Dixon said. “It wouldn’t be good anyway, because of the treatment that we’re having to do at the lake and if you’ve been out there, you can see that those algae pads are starting to gather around the edges where the kids always fish anyway. So it’d be hard fishing.”

Dixon also informed the council that posts for a new fence on the Cosby Lake peninsula were installed earlier that day.

“The posts went in today for a fence to keep people from going out to the end of the peninsula because that’s where all the controls for the fountain are,” Dixon said. “The fountain is there to help aerate the lake and try to keep some of those moss pads from floating up to the top. The treatment was done a week before last and the fountain went in last week.”

Dixon said there are timers and motor controls at the end of the peninsula that do not need to be hooked by fishing hooks.

“I talked to the mayor and the only way we can think of to keep people from going out there is just to put a fence, with an opening in it that we can get out there to cut (grass) and clean, and people can still get to the Christmas tree to make pictures,” Dixon said. “It’s before you get to the Christmas tree; past the flagpole, but before you get to the Christmas tree.”

The new fence will match the fencing surrounding the park.

The city has also purchased a second fountain for Cosby Lake. The new fountain will have lights and will be installed where the current fountain is now. The existing fountain will be moved closer to the dam.

“We can move (the first one) over and give us more air in the lake, too,” Mayor Charles Webster said. “It will help.”

Webster gave some updates during pre-council about the tennis courts and splash pad that the city is working toward. He said that a construction meeting would be held on Wednesday, May 29, for the tennis courts. He also said that he would be meeting with people he met at a convention to discuss the cost of a splash pad.

“Those two things are basically in the works,” Webster said.

In other city news, Dixon informed the council about a business license application for four-wheeler repairs being done out of a residential home, which he said he, as revenue officer, will deny based on a zoning issue. The property is zoned Residential Agricultural, although it is only 1.3 acres and the city ordinance says that property must have at least 2 acres to be considered agricultural. In order to hold a business in the location, the property would need to have commercial zoning.

“These folks we had here for a public hearing last month,” he said. “The house has no utilities at all…since that first meeting, they also added one of the sons to the ownership. As I said before, the neighbors are really concerned about the condition of the property, but also, they’re concerned about them running a business out of there.”

Dixon said that the owners applied for a business license this week, after having been issued a “Cease and Desist” notice from the city on May 16. According to Dixon, the owners have continued to run their business despite the cease and desist order, as well as continuing to live in the house with no utilities.

“It’s not a proper place for a business,” Dixon said. “It’s a residential area…I’ll deny the business license and make y’all aware of it so we can move on. At some point, we’re going to have to address the house.”

During the council meeting, the city council passed a motion to approve two new members to the Planning & Zoning Commission. Wing-A-Fish owner Eddie Dawson and Jody Harris were appointed to fill vacancies left by Dean Kirkner, who is now on the city council, and Charles Agnew.

“I think they’ll make two good members,” Webster said.

The council also unanimously approved a resolution to release a lien for abatement of weeds on multiple properties in Highland Green Sector Three.

The next Clay City Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, June 11, 2019, at Clay City Hall. The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m., following a pre-council meeting at 6 p.m.

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