Bryant Council approves billboards, new gated community

A rezoning ordinance permitting a new gated community and a billboard ordinance drew the approval of the Bryant City Council in a meeting Thursday night.

The gated community, which will be located on Mt. Carmel Road south of Hurricane Creek, will be an upscale neighborhood similar to Midtown and will be built in three phases.

Developers have been working with every city department to make sure this is the best project possible, said Dee Fiser, one of the project coordinators.

At first, the council members approved the rezoning ordinance only on its the first reading but failed to pass a motion for subsequent readings, saying they did not want to rush it. This would have resulted in the ordinance being presented again at the council's next meeting.

Fiser then asked that the aldermen approve the zoning change because of time constraints related to the date for closing on the purchase of the land.

"Putting this off can kill a good project," said Alderman Brenda Miller.

The council then voted to approve the additional readings, but the ordinance will not become effective for 30 days.

The council also approved an ordinance dealing with billboards. According to the ordinance, new billboards will be allowed only on Interstate 30 and must be situated at least a thousand feet from another billboard.

The council also discussed the forensic audit that was requested by the council months ago.
Alderman Randy Cox told the council that he has recently spoken with Dr. L. Douglas Brown, who has been hired to complete the forensic audit. Cox requested that staff attorney Chris Madison speak with Brown.

The council also requested feedback about the recent legislative audit findings. Two of the findings have beeb submitted to Saline County Prosecuting Attorney Ken Casady for further review.

The findings pertain to lack of documentation or no documentation for travel expenses.

Casady is hoping to wrap up everything in a week, said Joy Black, the city's finance director.

"The investigation is going fine," she said.