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GUEST COLUMNIST: Christmas already? How the year has flown

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By Don Pay

“What’s to-day!” cried Scrooge, calling down to a boy in Sunday clothes. “What’s today, my fine fellow?” said Scrooge.

“Today!” replied the boy. “Why, Christmas Day.”

“It’s Christmas day!” said Scrooge to himself. “I haven’t missed it. The Spirits have done it all in one night.”

I’m amazed that Christmas is here already. The year has flown by. As I read the words of Charles Dickens from “A Christmas Carol” this holiday season, and think of all that has been accomplished in the city this past year, I can say without a doubt, our stocking is full.

Our 3.8 million dollar Phase III water project is nearly complete providing new water lines and meter sets in the city and much of the county including a new water tower to be completed soon. Construction will also begin on a new sewer plant. This will provide better water and sewer service as well as increased fire protection.

This year the city has entered into an agreement with the fire department to provide fire protection that will save tax payer money and lower taxes in key city areas.

The city police department participated in a large scale community wide drug roundup resulting in several arrests in an effort to make our community drug free. Also both Police and Fire continue to bring in grant money to advance their departments.

This year the city voted not to raise property taxes and even lowered personal property taxes.

We have begun much needed work on the Pioneer Cemetery which will be completed in the spring.

We have started work on refurbishing Taylorsville’s “Old Town” beginning on Main Cross Street with new sidewalks and resurfacing the street. This project will help correct our city drainage problems as we move forward with this project street by street.

The revitalization of the downtown historic district continues to be a source of pride for our community with the completion of Phase I Main Street. Phase II planning will begin in January and will include the downtown area from Main Cross and the Courthouse to Jefferson Street. All of this has been achieved through grant funding, both city and county cooperation, and a strong Main Street volunteer base.

This past year has brought us an overwhelmingly successful Arts Festival, Homecoming, Trick or Treat on Main, and Veterans Day Celebration. Also, this year we bid farewell to City Commissioner Syd Kirsch. I thank her for her dedication, loyalty and contribution to the city. I also welcome Beverly Bentley-Ingram as our new City Commissioner.

I look forward to serving you this next year as we continue to achieve new goals and reach new heights together for our city. I also invite everyone to join us this Friday evening for Christmas on Main. This is the part where I get to wear my top hat and light up the Christmas Tree on the Town Square. The Chamber of Commerce will host a live Nativity Scene, Christmas caroling, photos with Santa, horse and buggy rides, and music in the Chamber. There will also be a Main Street Volunteer Appreciation celebration at the Sanctuary Art Center following Christmas on Main. I hope everyone can join us.

“A Merry Christmas, Bob!” said Scrooge, with an earnestness that could not be mistaken. “Make up the fire before you dot another ‘I’, Bob Cratchit.” He knew how to keep Christmas well...may that be truly said of all of us. And so, as Tiny Tim observed, “God Bless us, everyone.”

Merry Christmas,

Mayor Don Pay