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On The Edges--Rogersville

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by Diane Rarick

Larry Martin started Nov. 9 as city administrator of Rogersville. Martin, however, is no stranger to city government, having previously served as mayor and prior to that as alderman. The move to a full-time city administrator in Rogersville will benefit the town as it moves to attract new business and industry.

A new 200-foot-tall, 250,000-gallon water tower, which will be functioning by the end of November, is also key to the city's continued growth, according to Martin. Past attempts to lure industry to Rogersville were hampered by summer water shortages.

"That spooked a few manufacturers," Martin said. But with a reliable water source and natural gas available, Martin said he hopes to "situate ourselves for a small industrial park for small, light manufacturing and possibly a frontage road along Highway 60 for retail."

Martin said he has recently fielded inquiries from restaurants, small hotels and small to mid-size manufacturers.

Martin's varied background includes working for the Missouri Department of Conservation, and as a police officer and sales manager. He also owns a cabinet shop and gift shop in Rogersville.

As city administrator, he oversees 12 city employees plus volunteers from the Fire Department, Parks Board and Planning and Zoning Board. "This job provides someone here full-time, getting big projects done, someone of a heightened level of responsibility who's responsive to the public and who can respond on the spot," Martin said.

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