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Inverness to decide on police vests, water costs

The city manager will recommend the city apply for a federal grant that pays half the cost of the vests. Also on the agenda is the use of a contingency fund for water plant improvements.

By JORGE SANCHEZ, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published April 15, 2003


INVERNESS -- A proposal to purchase bulletproof vests for city police and a request for additional funds to cover the costs of improvements to the city's water plant are scheduled for discussion at today's Inverness City Council meeting.

The council meets at 5:30 p.m. at Inverness City Hall.

Inverness police Chief Lee Alexander seeks council approval to apply for a grant that would reimburse his department for part of the cost of bulletproof vests. The program, administered by the U.S. Department of Justice, reimburses small-town police departments half the cost of the vests.

The vests cost about $400 each. Because they are custom-fitted, the vests can't always be passed along from officer to officer.

According to a memo Alexander prepared, the city would receive $2,785 in reimbursement for vests purchased since March 1, 1999.

Alexander proposes to use this reimbursement as the city's share to purchase up to 13 more vests under the program, which lasts until 2007.

"By utilizing the funds from the reimbursement of bulletproof vests bought since March 1999 as our portion of the cost for future bulletproof vests, the city can conceivably meet its projected needs with no further expenditure of tax dollars," Alexander wrote.

Inverness City Manager Frank DiGiovanni will recommend the council apply for the grant.

Council members also are expected to approve a transfer of $32,000 from a contingency fund at the Water Utilities Department to cover the costs of converting the water supply from the old Citrus plant on Citrus Avenue to the Pleasant Grove plant on Pleasant Grove Road.

The contingency fund request covers $16,000 for chemicals, $9,000 for equipment and maintenance and $7,000 for water tests.

Perkins Restaurant dumps plan after delay

The council was also informed by the developers of a proposed Perkins Restaurant and Bakery that it will not proceed with its plans to build in the city.

Matthew M. Gillio, president of Gillio Development, wrote in a letter to city staffers that a delay by the city in submitting a grant application to cover sewer lines created insurmountable "timeline problems" concerning the Perkins site on State Road 44 W near Richards Street.

He also said Perkins corporate officials needed a guarantee of appropriate signage on SR 44.

The proposed site did not front SR 44, but could be seen from the road, near the SunTrust Bank.

-- Jorge Sanchez can be reached at 860-7313 or sanchez@sptimes.com .

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