City agrees to take control of 76

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BRANSON MO NEWS: After a year of sitting in limbo, the city of Branson agreed to take ownership of the deed for 76 Country Boulevard.

After meeting with representatives from the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) during a study session Thursday, the Branson Board of Aldermen voted Monday 4-2 to accept a supplemental agreement to the road relinquishment agreement from September 2016 for a period of 20 years.

One of the key factors for the city agreeing to take ownership of the road is tied to the 76 Revitalization Project, which would allow the city to create regulations allowing for utility poles to be placed underground.

“I know there’s a want to put a lot of those utilities underneath the roadway, and we weren’t in support of that,” said Beth Schaller, MoDOT area engineer.

Another issue surrounding the original road relinquishment agreement surrounded the status of a $13 million loan from the Missouri Department of Transportation Finance Corporation (MTFC), which would have funded the initial part of the project.

Stan Dobbins, interim city administrator who will become full-time city administrator in January, said the city was unable to use the loan for the first section of the project because the city went out for bids before the loan was approved.

“Which made the loan not applicable to (portions) of that first section,” Dobbins said.

Schaller said MoDOT met with city staff on ways the city could still use the loan.

“We met on two separate occasions with the city in January and tried to supply them with methods to use the loan,” Schaller said. “Then in February, I was informed the city would not be pursuing the loan.”

According to Dobbins, the city still qualifies for the loan for upcoming sections of the project.

“It’s just we have to follow the correct process to utilize …


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