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Board, chief laud donor for support of LOPD: The outpouring of support for the Lake Ozark Police Department continues. Two weeks after Dennis Reese and Springfield Armory donated new weapons and accessories for every LOPD officer including reserves, a Lake Ozark businessman has donated $7,500 strictly for use by the department for the benefit of its officers. Police Chief Gary Launderville reported at the regular Sept. 14 board of aldermen meeting that George Tucker, owner of Tucker’s Shuckers on The Strip, handed him a check recently. The board then adopted a resolution expressing the city’s appreciation. Chief Launderville told the board that he took a call from Tucker about a month ago asking what he could do for LOPD officers. Tucker said he wanted to make sure any donation would go to LOPD officers. The chief explained that because of budgetary restrictions, any donation couldn’t be put in the in the city’s general fund with guarantees it would be used for the LOPD. He said Tucker insisted the money be used for the LOPD and not for general city expenses such as filling potholes. “I want this for the betterment of the police officers,” he told the chief. The only way that could happen, Launderville explained, was for a donation be made to the Lake Ozark Police Benevolent Police Association. “I was expecting a $500 check,” Launderville said. “About a week and a half later, George walked through the door with a $7,500 check. For a local businessman to step up and do something like that, the same as Denny Reese, and then you look at the donations we’ve received the last 30 days it’s amazing. Our department truly appreciates it.” Launderville noted that the donation is not a donation to the City of Lake Ozark but to a totally separate, non-profit organization for the betterment of the officers or the department. When equipment is not in the LOPD budget, the Benevolent Association steps up and helps, he explained.  “It benefits the City of Lake Ozark, it benefits the community,” Launderville said. “We don’t do fund raisers because Lord knows we don’t have time. We rely on donations and the goodwill of the community.”   The resolution It says: George Tucker has been instrumental in the redevelopment of the Bagnell Dam Strip, having established Tucker’s Shuckers Oysters & Tap and Neon Taco. The city would like to recognize Mr. Tucker’s community leadership, support and generosity to the city including a substantial donation of $7,500 recently made to the Police Benevolent Fund. The board of aldermen publicly expresses its appreciation to Mr. Tucker for his generosity to the police Benevolent Fund and his other contributions to our community.    

TEST TW WEATHER

Vehicles towed after motorists ignore No Parking signs

Several motorists ignored clearly posted No Parking signs during a recent event in Lake Ozark and their vehicles were towed.

The Shootout on the Strip Meet and Greet held Aug. 25 closed Bagnell Dam Blvd. (The Strip) from School Road to near Bagnell Dam. As a result, dozens of parking spaces were lost to the event and motorists were able to park outside the closed area on Bagnell Dam Blvd., in two large church parking lots, two parking lots at nearby School of the Osage facilities, and in a spacious area below Bagnell Dam Blvd. owned by Ameren Missouri. Shuttles were available throughout the day.

Despite those alternative parking areas, 13 motorists opted to ignore No Parking signs along Valley Road which is a service road parallel to Bagnell Dam Blvd. It’s often used as an alternative route when The Strip is closed to thru traffic. Ultimate towing cost could be between $200 and $300. Lake Ozark Police Department officers did not issue any tickets so there was no revenue for the city.

“Valley Road has been posted No Parking for many years,” Police Chief Gary Launderville said after the vehicles were towed. “It’s obvious our visitors didn’t take our ordinances seriously and thought our officers would turn a blind eye. We don’t operate our department that way.”

In addition to permanent, year-round No Parking signs, the city adds temporary signs during special events to warn motorists.

Valley Road is narrow and winding. Parking in the No Parking areas reduces the width of the road to one-way and creates a safety hazard for other motorists. It’s especially serious for emergency vehicles, Chief Launderville said.  

“We always welcome visitors to our community and encourage our residents to shop and eat locally,” Launderville said. “But we have to maintain a semblance of order for the safety of everyone. We simply can’t and won’t tolerate such an obvious violation of the law.”

The next big event for Lake Ozark and the lake area is BikeFest Sept. 15-19. While there is no official closing of streets, there will be thousands of recreational motorcycle enthusiasts and visitors and parking is expected to be a premium. 

Launderville said the same enforcement will apply at all future events as well.