Kilgore City Council members discussed a variety of issues at their most recent regular board meeting Tuesday, April 28, including library programs and public works projects.

In the presentations portion of the meeting, council members heard a report about plans for Kilgore Public Library’s summer programs.

Things are going to be a little bit different this year,” with the library’s annual Summer Reading Program, said Stacey Cole, Kilgore Public Library Director. The theme of this year’s program will be “Imagine Your Story”, which Cole said she and KPL staff were “very excited about.”

“We have been working on this all year long and recently we have begun to make some adjustments,” she allowed, as the library has worked to adjust to restrictions due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

KPL will once again use Beanstack, a digital tool enabling readers to track their reading progress and earn badges and awards.

“Users can register, track their reading and complete any of our Summer Reading Program activities using an app on their phone or online,” Cole said of the software, which KPL has used since 2018.

Cole noted several changes to the program: first, KPL typically sends out letters to local businesses asking for sponsorships for the summer program. However, she said, doing so during a difficult economic time “didn’t seem appropriate or right.”

As a result, the library won’t award small gifts typically given for kids who hit their reading goals, such as coupons for ice cream or bowling.

Another change will come in the form of the program’s special activities typically housed in the Texan Theater and in the library: they will now be presented virtually so viewers can tune in online.

Participants who complete the reading program will still receive a book and t-shirt, which will be printed with the help of Friends of the Kilgore Public Library.

The library will still offer online activities on Facebook, Instagram and their new YouTube page. Participants can also pick up “take and make” activity bags through the library’s curbside pickup service.

Kilgore Director of Public Works Clay Evers also delivered a presentation to council members on public projects throughout the city during the pandemic and a new tool citizens can use to check up on all 31 projects currently being managed by the department.

“Our public works department has continued on during this time with all necessary precautions that are recommended by the state and federal authorities. Unfortunately, we need to keep the city running as far as water, wastewater...a lot of our projects were ongoing or well underway. We have a series of considerations as far as cash flows and timelines that we need to meet to continue to meet the deadlines we have set for these projects.”

Evers confirmed all Kilgore Public Works Department employees were healthy and following safe work guidelines.

The new “Current Projects” list can be viewed at by clicking on the “Departments” tab, then the “Engineering” tab on the left side of the page and finally by clicking the “Current Projects” link.

“We have debuted a new tool for the city and citizens and the Public Works Department to view all updates on all projects the Public Works Department is managing at this time.”

The list includes expected dates of completion, project finances and budgets and will be updated with new information on a regular basis.

Kilgore Mayor Ronnie Spradlin prepared to deliver a scheduled proclamation regarding the state’s order of emergency declaration but City Manager Josh Selleck informed him that would be delivered at a later time.

City Council meetings can be viewed either live or after being broadcast on the city’s Facebook page.


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