Dear Branson Community,
The First Session of the 101st Missouri General Assembly convened in Jefferson City last week. Bills being discussed include Capturing use tax on out-of-state purchases (Wayfair legislation), Municipal court reform, and Community Improvement District (CID)/Transportation Development District (TDD) mandates. You can see more Bill of interest to Missouri municipal officials here. It will be interesting to see what happens with the Wayfair issue. So far, 43 of 45 states with statewide sales taxes have passed Wayfair legislation with Missouri and Florida being the two outliers.
Just as a reminder, City offices will be closed in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday, January 18. Each year on the third Monday of January, America honors the birth, life, and dream of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer to improve our communities. I would like to encourage you to take this holiday weekend as an opportunity to seek out a way to do just that.
A longtime resident of our area, Shirley Henry, has moved to Colorado to be closer to her children. Her husband Sherman, before his passing, was a science professor at College of the Ozarks. Shirley is known by many for her help to the Lions Club and her involvement at First Presbyterian Church. She will be missed by many.
Now to continue our 2020 “Year in Review” as we take a look at some City accomplishments from the past year. Our city Emergency Management Division is embedded in our Branson Fire and Rescue Department. Its mission is to plan, prepare, and establish resources to respond to and mitigate the effects of natural or man-made disasters. As you can guess, this year's major emergency management event was the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Our Emergency Management Division did a wonderful job coordinating the city’s response through the development of a weekly Incident Action Plan. This team also helped create, organize, and coordinate the efforts the Task Force of Taney County. This Task Force includes the Taney County Health Department, area hospitals, local public safety organizations, the Branson Chamber of Commerce, and local municipalities. This Task Force is instrumental in creating initiatives focused on mobile testing sites, communicating with the public, vaccination plans, and future needs.
Interesting Factoid of the Week: The State of Missouri classifies cities into three types: 3rd Class, 4th Class, and those under constitutional charters. In State terminology, the City of Branson is classified as a 4th Class city. Classification is initially determined based on population size when a city first incorporates. There are different State laws or statutes for each class and that is why the City of Branson operates the way it does and gives us the authority we have.
Thank you to those who continue to pray for our city. Please stay positive and be thankful for living in the best city in America.
Thank you for letting me serve you,
Mayor Edd Akers