The Leeds City Council made a strategic move with its debt reduction fund in order to allow the city to secure a line of credit that will be used for new ballfields as well as paving and drainage projects.

The city council is looking to establish a $2.4 million general obligation warrant from Regions Bank at a rate of 4 percent for the purpose of constructing new ball fields at Memorial Park and to complete a laundry list of paving and drainage projects.

In order to secure the warrant, Regions Bank was requiring collateral in the form of an account collateral agreement on CDs currently held at another bank. That bank would not sign the agreement, which forced the city to consider other means of collateral.

Prior to last Monday’s meeting, the city held $1.7 million in an account intended for debt reduction. The city voted unanimously on Monday to move that account from the current bank to Regions, which would provide the collateral on the $2.4 million general obligation warrant.

City officials said the debt reduction fund would be replenished in 2012. It was also said that a one-cent sales tax and occupational tax from Grand River would be more than enough for the city to meet its upcoming obligations for the bonds taken out to build new schools.

Other items discussed by the council included:

• moving forward to eliminate commercial truck traffic on Zeigler Road and Presidents Street.

The council voted unanimously to prohibit tractor-trailer and other large trucks from traveling these roads. This will require trucks to continue down Highway 119 into Leeds where they will hit the city’s truck route.

“This is just one step to alleviate some of the problems we are seeing on those roads,” Mayor Eric Patterson said;

• approving revisions to the city’s employee handbook regarding the accrual of vacation and compensatory time. Currently, the city has 10,000 hours of comp time booked by employees, according to the mayor;

• extending the time for employees to work overdue vacation days. The council agreed to extend the deadline to April 30;

• held the first reading for revisions to the city’s business license ordinance. Officials said most of the changes are related to getting the document up-to-date with state guidelines;

• approving a work session to discuss the role of the park and recreation board. The council wants to discuss the role of the board prior to nominating new members. The session will be held November 29, 6 p.m., at the civic center. The council will also discuss Library Board of Trustee nominations during that work session;

• approving the reappointment of Sara Clisby as the Housing Authority Board’s resident representative;

• Fire Chief Allen Pierce said his department has completed fire hydrant testing within the city;

• Library director Mondretta Williams announced that the library would host a Scholastic Book Fair beginning the week after Thanksgiving. The books will be buy one get one free; and

• Finance Chair Charlotte Earnest said an audit of the city has begun and should be done by the end of the year.

The next regular city council meeting is scheduled for Monday, December 6, 6 p.m., at the Leeds Civic Center.

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