Monday evening Gould mayor Ernest Nash addressed how he's working with the newly elected city council to move the city forward.
The past two years have been full of trouble as the city of Gould has struggled with a $300,000 IRS tax debt, lawsuits from city bills payroll accounts that went that unpaid, and the forced closure of the police department. Also Mayor Nash was assaulted and arrested in two separate incidents in 2012.
"Over the past few years we've been tested," Nash told a room full of community members.
"It has been a struggle but it's been a struggle worthwhile," he says.
After years of watching city finances and morale decline, now many they say their prayers are being answered. Monday Mayor Nash showed a film detailing some of the city's problems that he says they're now fighting with solutions.
"The city is back on track and the city is doing what it needs to do to take care of itself," says Nash.
In his state of the city address he proudly introduced the city's new police chief and described pending water and street projects. Nash also thanked the new city council for catching up on the city's delinquent bills
Learning from past, he says he's focusing on laying the groundwork for a better future for Gould.
"In two to three years Gould will be a completely different place. We're hoping when people come through they won't recognize it," says Nash.
Mayor Nash says the city is also trying to re-brand itself as, "Gould: The gateway to the South"
and hoping to attract travelers along with new businesses to the stretch of highway running through town.
The mayor says they have some FEMA money on hold to help them with a few rebuilding projects and plan to apply for grant money to help fund others. City leaders are also looking forward to increased tax revenues approved by voters in November to fund street repairs.