The City of Glencoe is celebrating Christmas in July after the trustees of the Payne County Economic Development Authority agreed to pay a $9,665 bill for the large artificial Christmas tree the town bought in November as part of its 2018 community Christmas season.

The Christmas tree, said to be the tallest in Payne County, was the “hit of the town,” Trustee Chris Reding said.

The economic development authority approved a grant last year for the purchase of the tree and placed a six month deadline for the City of Glencoe to submit the bill for payment. In discussing whether the bill, which was submitted past the county’s deadline, should be paid, Trustee Zach Cavett, said “at some point you have to draw a line.”

He noted that the economic development authority has other expenditures that could be compromised when tardy claims are presented.

Nevertheless, the trustees for the economic development authority approved payment of the claim and resolved to make it clearer in the future by underlining in bold the deadline for reimbursement for a grant recipient.

The Payne County Commissioners, acting as trustees for the economic development authority, also approved the audit of the economic development authority for the year ending Dec. 31, 2018. The audit shows the authority had a balance of $118,945 on hand at the end of the year.

The audit also reported the funds used by the authority to build a home in Cushing in collaboration with the Central Tech Vocational Technology School on a lot owned by Payne County.

The trustees approved paying $3,500 to Steven F. Cundiff, C.P.A. for conducting the audit.