Happy New Year to everyone. 2020 is one year I am glad to kiss goodbye, but hope is on the horizon. Mostly, that concerns the virus pandemic and the vaccinations coming on line. It would be nice to have gatherings once more and feel safe going to the movies or festivals. Small businesses and their employees will have a fighting chance to be profitable again and have a job. I do realize it will still take time for this to happen but it is a glimmer of hope that we are coming to the end of the tunnel.

One thing that hasn’t stopped is bills. They keep piling up. Our town’s wheel tax is due for our vehicles. Reminders will be posted on the next water bill. It will be $20 for the first car and a little cheaper for the other vehicles if you have more than one per residence. Originally, the wheel tax was for sidewalks and road repair, but it all goes in the general fund anyway.

Looking back on the year, our water project had gotten started replacing the cast iron water mains. It is still in progress. The old Rhodes building that was constantly dropping bricks into the street is finally down, leaving a nice empty lot for redevelopment. Two crushed sewer drains were fixed improving drainage on the streets. Now, grants are being sought to fix some more. Progress has been made in town.

Next year is the city election. In April, we will be voting for mayor and three aldermen — one from each precinct. Those running should have their applications turned in by now. Soon, we will be seeing election signs in people’s yards. I don’t expect to see all the hoopla as in the presidential election, but a little excitement would be nice.

New Year’s Eve babies included Bobby Nix, Connie Douglas and Wanda Smith. On Jan. 2, Josie Bennett, Joyce Cook and Opal Shourd will celebrate a birthday. Jan. 3, Shelly Schnarre and W.W. Winters will be a year older, as will Odell Allbritten on Jan. 4. Send birthday greetings to these fine folks.

There are two anniversaries coming this week; Tami and John Wessel celebrate Jan. 1 and Andrea and Dave Douglas on Jan. 5. Best wishes to these lovely couples. Ask Dave how many years he’s been married and he will tell you, “Fifteen happy years” even though we were married for over twice that. (You have to know his sense of humor.)

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