The Arkadelphia City Board of Directors unanimously approved a contract with the Arkadelphia Regional Economic Development Alliance for 2014. The contact includes requirements that the Alliance work closely with Arkadelphia City Manager Jimmy Bolt. It also works to create strategies for economic development, including retail. The contract is for partial funding of personnel positions that promote economic development. According to Bolt, the continuation of funding economic development by contracting with the Alliance is important in the community's effort to improve the quality of life. "One of the key elements of economic development is showing of solidarity in a community and with whole regions. This relationship continues to be part of our long-term economic development strategy,” said Bolt. Bolt noted that the city of Arkadelphia will pay $30,000 for the services. In addition, the city will commit to and conduct itself with a willingness to work with residents of Clark County and the entire region to achieve the purpose of economic and industrial development to provide technical assistance as needed to the Alliance. The contract also calls for the city to assist the Alliance for the purpose of promoting the conditions necessary for economic development. The responsibilities of the Alliance outlined in the contract are: • Provide and pay professional personnel who promote economic develop consistent with the city's objectives. • Work closely with the city manager and city board of directors. • Assist the city to create and implement strategies for economic development in and around Arkadelphia. • The executive vice president will meet quarterly with the city manager to provide updates on economic development. Other items addressed: • Directors approved a change order to the city's Streetscape project. • Brenda Gills, manager of the Arkadelphia Water Department, gave an update about the recent fire at the Water Maintenance Facility. See an upcoming edition of the Siftings for that update.