ALTON - The Alton City Council approved and discussed several items at their April 12 meeting, including new ARPA spending projects, an operation agreement for the Alton Marina, the temporary closure of a portion of Belle Street, property demolitions, and more.

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The most contentious resolution of the night was one authorizing the closure of State Street between 3rd and 4th streets for the grand opening of a new business, “Mr. Everything,” on April 20 from 4 to 11 p.m.

Alderwoman Betsy Allen raised concerns that James Hickman with Mr. Everything did not have the support of the local business community for a street closure during their normal business hours. Alderman Raymond Strebel raised concerns that Hickman was advertising that alcohol and food vendors would be present at the event, despite not notifying the Madison County Health Department about the food vendors and not having his liquor license approved by the City Council prior to the event.

Confusion ensued amongst the council members, some of whom questioned whether Hickman actually had a liquor license or if he could have reasonably known he needed to meet all of these requirements, emphasizing that he had filled out what he believed to be all of the required paperwork more than a month in advance of the event. The resolution authorizing the street closure ultimately passed with four voting in favor, two voting against, and one abstaining.

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The City Council also approved the addition of three new priority project categories for the city to fund with ARPA funding. Up to $1 million each has been allocated for projects addressing affordable housing and homelessness, youth skills and development, as well as economic development. The city will meet with community groups to determine specific projects and dollar amounts to address these issues later this year.

A resolution authorizing Seahorse Ranch Marine, Inc. to be the sole managing operator of the Alton Marina was approved unanimously by the City Council. The agreement lasts for a three-year term spanning from April 15, 2023 to March 31, 2026.

The council also approved the closure of Belle Street between 3rd and 4th Streets from Friday, May 5, 2023 at 8 a.m. to Sunday, May 7, 2023 at 8 a.m. to facilitate the Annual Kentucky Derby Weekend at the request of Mac’s Timeout.

Council members also approved moving forward with demolition proceedings at 2410 E. Broadway and 1311 E. 5th Street, and referred the following property demolition proceedings to the Committee of the Whole for their next meeting:

  • 1217 E. 5th Street
  • 1613 Joesting Avenue
  • 730 Humboldt Court
  • 728 Humboldt Court
  • 1109 Wesley Street
  • 1923 Grove Street
  • 915 Harrison Street
  • 3308 Franor Street
  • 2813 Sunnyside Street
  • 3105 Hillcrest Avenue

A full recording of the April 12 meeting is available at the top of this story, on, or on the Facebook page.

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