Thursday, January 31, 2013

City receives $487,015 in MoDOT grant funds for sidewalk improvements

The City of Rolla is among two other cities in Missouri that will be receiving a total of $935,595 in enhancement grant funds from the Missouri Department of Transportation for sidewalk improvements.
Anne McClay, Project Coordinator, in the city's Public Works Department, made a convincing presentation at the Meramec Regioinal Planning Commission (MRPC) Transportation Advisory Committee on Dec. 13, 2012. The TAC evaluated, ranked and forwarded their recommendation to MoDOT, which selected the cities of Rolla, Vienna and Potosi for the approved enhancement grant funds.
Of the $487,015 that Rolla requested, the entire amount was approved. The grant will be used for a five-year plan to replace more than 1,000 handicapped sidewalk ramps in the city that do not meet compliance with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA).
With the help of the grant, it would have taken the city between 20 and 25 years to replace all the ramps. 

Monday, January 28, 2013

Brewer Science Expands High-Volume Manufacturing in Missouri, Bringing State additonal high-tech jobs

Brewer Science, Inc., recently announced plans to build a high-volume manufacturing facility in Vichy, Missouri, to produce materials for manufacturing next-generation smartphones, tablet computers, and other microelectronic devices.  The announcement means new jobs for Missouri and an expansion of the state's technology footprint. Brewer Science, one of the world's leading technology companies, is part of the emerging I-44 technology corridor in Missouri, spanning across the state from St. Louis to Joplin.
The new facility will be located at the Rolla National Airport, which is approximately 12 miles from Brewer Science’s headquarters in Rolla, Missouri.  This new investment in the growth of Brewer Science will provide increased capacity for high-volume manufacturing of specialty materials that meet the extremely stringent specifications required by today’s global microelectronics marketplace.
Brewer Science specializes in technology that has made electronic devices smaller, thinner, lighter, and more powerful. Under the leadership of Dr. Terry Brewer, founder and President, Brewer Science has become a major Missouri employer that has been designing and manufacturing new technology products since 1981.  The expansion will bring additional high-value manufacturing jobs to the state of Missouri.
“Brewer Science is excited to be growing and expanding Missouri’s manufacturing footprint as well as its technology footprint,” says Dr. Brewer.  “The expansion demonstrates our commitment to our customers by providing additional capacity and capabilities to support the complex product needs of the industry.  Brewer Science technology is a part of products such as smartphones, tablet computers, cameras, games, and many other electronic devices.  The new facility will provide the company with multiple manufacturing locations in Missouri and will bring additional jobs to the state.” 
Utilizing Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) guidelines, the new facility will be powered using geothermal energy.  Designed to be energy-efficient and environmentally sensitive, with attention to state-of-the-art safety specifications, the building will have the infrastructure to manufacture high-volume products that meet or exceed International Organization for Standardization (ISO) requirements. 
Brewer Science greatly appreciates the team effort put forth by the City of Rolla, the Rolla Regional Economic Commission, and the Rolla Community Development Corporation as well as the involvement of Intercounty Electric Cooperative and the Maries County Commission, all of which helped make this announcement possible.
About Brewer Science
Brewer Science is a global leader in developing and manufacturing advanced materials and equipment for the reliable fabrication of cutting-edge microdevices used in electronics such as tablet computers, smartphones, digital cameras, televisions, and LED lighting. Brewer Science provides process flexibility and a competitive edge for its customers and plays a critical role in the supply chain. Since 1981, when its ARC® materials revolutionized lithography processes, Brewer Science has expanded its technology to include products used in advanced lithography, chemical and mechanical device protection, thin layer handling, and 3-D integration as well as products based on carbon nanotubes and nanotechnology. With its headquarters in Rolla, Missouri, Brewer Science now supports its worldwide customers through a service and distribution network in North America, Europe, and Asia.
To learn more about the exciting innovation at Brewer Science, we invite you to visit our website at, follow us on Twitter @BrewerScience, or Like us on Facebook at
For additional information, please contact M. Loretta Wallis, Corporate Relations Manager, at 573-364-0444, ext. 1357 or at

Mayor Jenks proclaims January "Mentoring Month" in Rolla

Realizing that the future of Rolla, Phelps County and the state of Missouri rests on the hopes and dreams of its children, Rolla Mayor Bill Jenks, III proclaimed the month of January “Mentoring Month in Rolla” recently at Rolla City Hall.
(Pictured with Mayor Jenks (front row, l to r) are: Scott Marchetti, mentor; Rachael Karr, Mentoring Program Coordinator, Prevention Consultants of Missouri and (back row), Jamie Myers, Executive Director, Prevention Consultants of Missouri.)
Mentoring Month provides an opportunity to recognize and commend the efforts of local mentoring programs and their volunteers, and raise community awareness of the importance and effectiveness of mentoring.

Healthy Heart Zumba Party set for Feb. 22 at Eugene Northern

In an effort to focus on Heart Awareness during the month of February, The Centre staff will be holding the annual Healthy Heart Zumba Party on Friday, Feb. 22 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Eugene Northern Community Hall (located at 400 West Fourth Street) in Rolla, Missouri.
The Centre staff will donate the proceeds to the Heart to Heart Committee, which is a branch of the Foundation at Phelps County Regional Medical Center (P.C.R.M.C.).
The Heart to Heart Committee has been able to gift countless men and women in our community screenings that they would otherwise not be able to afford. Several individuals have even had to have immediate medical action so the committee and Centre staff are thrilled to be able to ZUMBA for such a great cause! 
Door prizes will be given to winning participants! All ages are welcome for this FUNdraiser! The entry fee is $10 or FREE for unlimited class pass holders. So sign up today at The Centre (1200 N. Holloway St.), or call The Centre at 573-341-2386.

Infrastructure imperative to City's prosperity

Mayor Bill Jenks, III
Whenever we think of goals or resolutions for a new year, the word ‘prosper’ or ‘prosperity’ almost always seems to find its way into the discussion or conversation. So this week’s column is somewhat appropriately focused on how important our City’s infrastructure is to the prosperity of our community.
While some of my previous City Talk columns have included information about the vital role infrastructure projects and improvements play in the future prosperity of our community, there seems to currently be an abundance of examples that can illustrate this.
Let’s start with the new Public Works Services Park, located off McCutchen Drive, near the Rolla Recycling Center. This large area of land, once referred to as the Mead Property, is showing significant signs of development with the near completion of a new building that will house the Environmental Services Department’s Vehicle Maintenance Division and Solid Waste Division. A portion of this area will also be used as the future site of a new Animal Shelter, Street Division, and Traffic Engineering Division. But there is also additional land available for new industrial and business expansion for companies looking to located in this area.
 Another area where infrastructure improvements continue to be made is in the Blues Lake area located between Bridge School Road and Martin Springs Outer Drive. This area, which is home to Mercy Health Clinic, several clinics operated by Phelps County Regional  Medical Center, the Bond Clinic, now operated and owned by P.C.R.M.C., has developed into an impressive and attractive health and medical complex that will soon include a new 110-bed nursing home. The new Columbia College campus is also a great addition to this area. Most businesses and individuals thinking about locating to an area or community are typically very interested in the quality of health care and medical options available.
 In the not too distant future, significant improvements will be made to Hwy. V and the I-44 overpass at HyPoint Industrial Blvd. near Love’s Truck Stop. Wider ramps, new traffic lights, and expanded traffic lanes will all enhance this busy area, which serves not only as a strategic corridor for the trucking, travel and tourism industry that uses the Love’s Truck Stop area, but also all the commerce that takes place at HyPoint Industrial Park, located just around the bend. HyPoint Industrial park is home to such important businesses as Brewer Science, Inc., Mo-Sci, Fed-Ex, Coca Cola, Pepsi, and many others. Expansion is evident at HyPoint with the construction of a new 17,400-foot business expansion at MoSci that will add recognition, and additional employment opportunities for the area.
Infrastructure improvements planned for Rolla National Airport (located 13 miles north of Rolla off Hwy. 63 North), in the way of a new water tower, sanitary sewer systems, and electrical upgrades, will all enhance the marketability and desirability of the 1,200 acres that comprise RNA. These improvements will provide the necessary ground-work and foundation for the kind of new industrial and business development that is so vital to the economic development of the Rolla and Phelps County region.
From a residential perspective, vital infrastructure improvements are being made to the Basswood Drive area located off Hwy. 63 South. New storm sewers, new curb and gutter, new road beds and smooth streets will greatly enhance the aesthetics of this area and improve property values along the way.
By improving the City’s infrastructure, we improve our community, and become more prosperous. A prosperous community provides badly needed job opportunities where individuals can pursue and focus on meaningful employment opportunities and pursue the type of quality of life that benefits us all as a community. Rolla is getting stronger through solid, sustained infrastructure, and I believe the momentum for economic growth and prosperity is in our favor for 2013 and beyond. 

2013: Environmental Services Dept. List of Important Dates (Clip & Save)

Feb. 18, 2013 - President’s Day:  Monday’s trash will be picked up Tuesday; Tuesday’s trash will be picked up Wednesday.
April 6, 2013 - Citywide Spring Clean Up:  Saturday - Citywide clean up day
(Residential only).
May 27, 2013 - Memorial Day:  Monday’s trash will be picked up Tuesday; Tuesday’s trash will be picked up Wednesday.
 July 4, 2013 - Independence Day:  Thursday’s trash will be picked up Wednesday.
Sept. 2, 2013 - Labor Day:  Monday’s trash will be picked up Tuesday; Tuesday’s trash will be picked up Wednesday.
Nov. 28, 2013 – Thanksgiving Day:  Thursday’s trash will be picked up Wednesday.
Dec. 25, 2013 – Christmas Day:  Trash service will not change.
Holidays NOT affecting trash or recycling collection:
            Oct. 14, 2013 – Columbus Day
            Nov. 11, 2013 – Veteran’s Day
            Nov. 29, 2013 – Day after Thanksgiving  
   Have a nice weekend and a safe week!

Friday, January 25, 2013

City of Rolla Fire & Rescue contains 2-alarm fire at AutoZone

On Tuesday, Jan. 24 at approximately 5:45 a.m. the City of Rolla Fire & Rescue responded to a report of a structure fire at 505 Highway 72, Rolla, MO which is occupied by AutoZone.  Upon arrival, firefighters found heavy smoke and fire coming from the basement area.  Firefighters began an interior attack to extinguish the fire. The department initially responded with nine firefighters and two 75 foot ladder trucks. 
A second alarm was activated with an additional fourteen off-duty firefighters and command staff responding.  Due to the large structure and extent of the fire, the Rolla Rural Fire Protection District and the St. James Rural Fire Protection District responded providing an additional twelve firefighters at the scene as well as covering additional fire related incidents within the City of Rolla. Due to the risk of contaminates entering the storm water system, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources also responded.
After approximately 30 minutes of interior fire attack, incident command made the decision to remove all firefighters from the interior of the building due to the loss of the structural integrity of the floor, walls, and roof.  A defensive fire attack was initiated by using a backhoe with a jackhammer attachment to make openings in the concrete basement walls allowing firefighters access into the burning area. 
The fire was placed under control at 9:02 a.m. with the direct flame damage being contained to the basement. There were no injuries to occupants or firefighters.  Due to the extreme heat of the fire, the floor joists were twisted and distorted which caused shifting and bowing of the flooring. This damage of the flooring caused many of the shelves of the AutoZone store to fall and collapse which destroyed the majority of the AutoZone inventory.   
The City of Rolla Fire & Rescue has initiated an investigation in conjunction with the Missouri Division of Fire Safety and the City of Rolla Police Department.  At this time, the fire has been determined to be suspicious and incendiary in nature.  If anyone has information regarding this fire, please call the Missouri Arson Hotline at 1-800-392-7766 (800-39-ARSON). 
“I am extremely happy with the performance of the firefighters as they battled a complex fire while enduring severe cold weather conditions," said Robert Williams, Fire Chief. 
Damage to the building is estimated to exceed $100,000 and damage to the personal property which includes AutoZone merchandise at approximately $900,000. 
The department would like to extend our appreciation to Rolla Rural Fire Protection District, St. James Fire Protection District, Phelps County Regional Medical Center Ambulance Services, Rolla Municipal Utilities, Rolla Street Department, City of Rolla Police Department, Rolla VIPS, City of Rolla Building Codes, Missouri State Highway Patrol, Phelps County Sheriff Department, Missouri Department of Transportation, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, Country Mart, Benton Square, and Pizza Inn.