Warrenton - The Warrenton City Commission still intends to change its meeting days to the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month, but continued to discuss a change in starting time.

Commission Vice-Chairman Dick Hellberg recently proposed the change from Wednesday to Tuesday nights to accommodate church-goers, and from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. to accommodate summer golfers and others. Hellberg was absent Wednesday night as commissioners considered a suggestion to meet at 6:30 p.m. in winter, and at 7 p.m. once daylight saving time begins. Nevertheless, a first reading of an ordinance to change the meeting dates and times went forward. March is the earliest the ordinance could take effect.

The commission re-appointed Kathleen Merritt and Jill Benish to the Community Library Board and Cindy Young, Russ Farmer and Linda Giddings to the Community Center Advisory Board.

Warrenton Fire Chief Ted Ames presented his annual report. The department received 546 calls in 2004, down 13 percent from 2003. Volunteers averaged 47 calls per month.

Fewer volunteers were able to respond to calls, Ames said, because most of them do not work in Warrenton. He said that creates a "precarious situation" for the fire department. However, he said the addition of a training officer has added significantly to the fire department. "In my opinion, that has raised our training standard to the highest in the county," Ames said.

In remarks from the public, Sally Smith, representing People for Responsible Prosperity, told the commission Calpine's proposed liquefied natural gas facility is potentially dangerous and will forever alter the character of the area.

She said residential and commercial development will be adversely affected if the project goes forward.

"We would like you to not take at face value everything Calpine says," Smith told the commissioners, adding that they have a "solemn duty to the citizens of Warrenton."

In other action Wednesday, the commission adopted a resolution exempting the wastewater treatment plant from competitive bidding requirements. Bids will go out in 45 to 60 days.


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