Grove Mayor Ed Trumbull asked for a resolution by the Grove City Council supporting funding of education.

“I don’t want to see our proposal or resolution supporting a teacher walkout but I would to see a resolution support proper funding of education,” Trumbull said.

State legislators have until April 1 to pass a educational funding package before a walkout would take place on April 2.

Many school boards across the state, including those in Grove and Jay, have passed resolutions approving a work stoppage.

Trumbull, a Grove School District middle school science teacher, made his request during his ward report which is heard toward the end of the meeting.

“We haven’t had a science budget for the middle school for at least 15 years – maybe even longer,” Trumbull said.

All the funding for supplies comes from the Grove Education Foundation for Excellence or from the teachers themselves, he said.

Class sizes have increased and there aren’t as many electives, Trumbull said referring to some of the educational problems.

Trumbull referenced State Question 779 which he said he didn’t support.

The State Question sought to add a one percent sales tax increase to help fund public education for grades kindergarten through 12 grade and for higher education and give teachers up to a $5,000 salary increase.

The question, which failed in the November 2016 General Election, would have raise the city’s sale tax to 10.3 percent, making Grove one of the highest taxed cities in Oklahoma.

Trumbull said he would like to see other city councils across the state to follow suit with similar proposals.

Other Business

In other business, the council approved holding a public meeting on April 17 to discuss 10 depilated structures.

The properties are located at 131 S. Cherokee, 609 S. Cherokee, 615 S. Cherokee, 10201 Highway 59, 316 W. 5th Street. 1563 110th Street, 1701 Gaslight Drive, 3661 Highway 59, 8916 Highway 59 and a dwelling on Dubois Street. 

“The meeting allows the property owners to come forward and discuss a plan of action,” said Debbie Bottoroff, assistant city manager.

The vote was 4-0. Councilman Marty Dyer was not present.

The council also approved the process for submitting applications for two Vacation Home Rentals.

“We received one comment in writing in favor,” Bottoroff said.

The two homes are located at 11168 W. 17th Street and 1114 W. 17th Street, which are part of the Elm Branch Addition.

The owners, Robert and Monte Houseman, attended the meeting but did not address the council.

Also approved was an encroachment agreement with Ken and Linda Little. The agreement allows the Littles temporary use of city road to access their driveway while they seek to have the road vacated.

The council also approved a bid from Envision City Engineers for $241,700 for work to be perform on the city hall parking lot.

Officials with Rose and McCrary, P.C. a Grove engineering firm recommend Envision City Engineers.

"There will be a Rose and McCrary employee onsite every day to make sure the project is in compliance,” said Tim McCrary, company vice-president.

A resolution approving Envision City Engineers will be brought to council later. 

The council also approved a $150 bid from Grove Fire Chief Mike Reed to serve as Grand Marshal for the Bassmaster Elite Tournament set for April 26 to 29 at Wolf Creek Park.

Reed submitted the only bid, said City Manager Bill Keefer.

His $150 bid will go as a donation to the Delaware County Children's Special Advocacy Network. Known as DCCSAN, the agency works with law enforcement, child protection, the district attorney’s office, mental health and medical agencies of child abuse cases.

Kaylea Hutson-Miller, Grove Sun and Delaware County Journal managing editor, addressed the council requesting it waive permit fees for the Grove Sun's Fifth Annual City Wide Garage Sale set for May 4 through 5.

Hutson-Miller said maps to all of the garage sales sites would be in the newspaper prior to the event.

"Grove gets a lot of out-of-town visitors that weekend,” Hutson-Miller said.

Grove Chief of Police Mark Morris informed the council that a mock disaster is planned for March 29.

Several streets surrounding the Grove school campus located near Seventh Street will be blocked off and traffic diverted, he said.

“The mock drill is for a biohazard spill,” Morris said.

The mock drill will test the police department’s new radio system and around 500 children will be evacuated to a different site, he said.

“We expect failure,” Morris said. “We want to see those failures so that we can address them.”

Morris said parents will be notified by the school of the drill.