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|3/20/2013 ||Email this article Print this article |
|Grand Mound council approves proposed budget|
By Sarah Beuthien
The Grand Mound City Council met Monday, March 11, starting with a public hearing on the 2013-2014 budget. No comments were received from the public. Later in the meeting the proposed budget was approved by resolution.
Louise Ringen of Cherokees Bar & Grill requested to close Smith Street during the evening of July 27 for a dance. The council advised Ringen King's Korner received approval for a street dance the same evening during the February council meeting
Ringen also informed council of a water line break on her property. She was under the impression the water line was shut off as she had requested previously; Steve Kilburg of the public works department confirmed he did shut the pipe off and did not know why it would have been on. She told the council she had this problem before and did not bring it to their attention then; however, she was not paying for the damage this time around. She submitted an estimate for council to review.
Donald Morrison of Main Stream Irrigation revisited the council to see if members had any questions following his visit in December. At that time, Morrison informed the council of a concept he believes would be beneficial to the city. He would like to see the city use water being discharged from the lagoons for land application either on a nearby farm or on the lagoon property.
Although the council members have thought about the process, they have not made any decisions regarding the concept and would like to review it more. Mayor Dan Behr asked councilman Darrell Warren and Kilburg to look further into the process and report back.
Norm Nielsen of Associated Insurance Counselors discussed the annual ICAP insurance policy. He advised the council the policy remains mostly the same with only minimal changes. He advised the council to create checklists for city buildings, parks and vehicles to ensure things are checked on a regular basis. He also advised the council to consider separating the fire department's insurance from the city's.
At the February council meeting, parking in the city was discussed with the concern being diagonal parking in residential areas where parallel parking is required. At that meeting, the council asked the sheriff's deputies to continue to keep an eye out for offenders. Beuthien asked if council might consider adding more signage to make parking more clear in the business area, but the council decided it wasn't worth the time or money for signage since the problem exists mainly in the residential areas.
Council member Tami Guy brought to the council's attention city hall's outdoor lighting is causing a problem. The lights are very bright and turn night into day for her and other residents neighboring city hall. Guy suggested placing lights in the landscape that would shine on the building. After discussion council asked Kilburg to try removing some of the bulbs or changing the wattage.
The city was awarded a $6,000 grant from Clinton County Emergency Management for the purchase of a generator for one of the city's lift stations. The funds will not be available until 2014, but council approved Kilburg making the purchase now to ensure the lift station will have power in case of emergencies.
During the discussion of the lift station, the recent rainfall was brought up. The lagoons are showing signs there still are infiltration problems with lateral sewer lines in town. The council asked Kilburg to get bids on smoking the laterals - a process where smoke is sent from manholes to residences/businesses to see if they have a cracked or damaged lateral. If a lateral is damaged, smoke either will rise from the ground or in residents' houses. Notice would be given to residents door-to-door before the work is done.
Kilburg still is working on bids for street repairs on Sunnyside and DeWitt streets. He also is waiting on bids for a new building behind city hall to house rock and sand.
One council member noted the alley behind his house is in very bad shape because the rock washes out. The council discussed different options but agreed all the alleys are in bad shape, especially this time of year. Kilburg commented with the new box blade, he should be able to make more progress on all the alleys.
City clerk Melissa Conner told the council she learned of a program to help retrieve outstanding money from past residents. The program has no fee until money is received and is minimal. Members advised her to move forward with the program.
Conner reported she received information from the Clinton County Fair board regarding the upcoming fair in July. The board hopes to have each community submit a completed barn quilt for permanent display at the fairgrounds. Conner already had talked with council member Guy and Sarah Beuthien; Beuthien and the Community Club work on the barn quilt, making a contest within the community to form a design.
Karyn Schultz and Beuthien, members of the community center board, addressed the council and asked for help with the remaining expense of purchasing back doors for the community center. The center recently purchased front doors using grant money and current funds but still needs to replace the back doors. The cost of the back doors is over $4,000. The group is asking for assistance.
The community center recently received the first disbursement from Greater Grand Mound Impact Fund when $700 was awarded for the back-door project.
Schultz informed the council she planned to apply for two additional grants and should know by mid-April how much the group would need to finish the project. The council is in favor of supporting the project and will discuss more at the May meeting when final numbers are available.
The Clinton County sheriff's report showed deputies spent 59.27 hours in the city Jan. 26-Feb. 25. They issued two warnings and two citations, handled one incident of threats and answered six calls.
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