Grants and tax credits sought for Katy Bridge

City Administrator Irl Tessendorf presented the Boonville City Council with an update on the Katy Bridge and potential funding available. He brought a number of funding examples to the table, including grants and tax credits. Tessendorf said there is funding available from the Missouri Department of Transportation for transportation enhancements. These funds are available to non-profit and government agencies which are designated for community based projects. This includes improving cultural, aesthetic and historic aspects of the transportation infrastructure. The tax credits available from the Tax Credit Contributions Program would give back 50 cents on the dollar spent. In the grant application, it states the history behind the Katy Trail and Boonville's transportation heritage. It also states that the Katy Trail and Boonville have become an emerging tourist destination. Further in, the city, in partnership with the Save the Katy Bridge Coalition seeks to make the bridge operational again and states beyond being a walkway, the city wishes to use the bridge as an eagle watching venue, engineering and transportation education center and a monument to bridge engineering technology. Tessendorf said the city has a good possibility of receiving the grant and the fact that the bridge has become quite popular since the Union Pacific wanted to dismantle it for use for a railroad bridge that crosses the Osage River east of Jefferson City. Tessendorf outlined three phases for the bridge project. Tessendorf said phase one would include the replacing of the missing span on the south approach of the bridge. He said this would be the less expensive of the phases. Phase two would include re-habing the lift span. Tessendorf said this would be the most costly phase. Phase three would then make the bridge completely usable which would connect the bridge to the north entrance. In a memorandum presented to the city council Union Pacific will give ownership of the bridge to the City of Boonville, the city would then take complete responsibility for it. In further news, the Boonville relocation and final site plan was passed unanimously. The plant is due to move to its new location on Radio Hill Road.