The Glen Elder City Council met for the first time in 2017 on Tuesday, January 3.
Fire Chief Garry Clark said the department would like to get two new air packs at a cost of about $1,000 each. He also said they have three carbon fiber bottles which he would like to replace at about $500 each. The air bottles were his biggest priority.
Clark said the green department truck’s transmission is slipping and needs to be addressed. It is a 1992 model. He said the red truck is a 1989 model which is in good condition outside of some leaky valves which could be replaced for about $100 each as need plus labor. The council requested Clark to have Mike Becker at American Ag and Auto inspect the transmission on the green truck and see what can be done locally.
The Community Club asked and was granted permission to have Jenny Ahlvers-Russell apply for a Dane G. Hansen grant on behalf of the city to procure the remaining funds needed to pay for the public restroom project. They have about $25,000 raised for the project and will need an estimated $25,000 more.
Chris Wagner gave the code enforcement report. He said there were two vacant homes in the city that he is keeping an eye on as they are becoming dilapidated.
Wagner also said there is an expected January 16 ship date for equipment for the Farmway dust system project to reduce grain dust in the city. Concrete is scheduled to be poured this week. The council approved a building permit for the new upgrade to the Farmway elevator facility.
The council moved to waive GAAP Requirements for 2017.
The new Neighborhood Revitalization Plan was adopted unanimously by the council. It renews the program for another 10 year period.
Discussion was then held on the contract with Wayne’s Sporting Good’s for the lease of the building the business occupies. The council has felt as though the current contract needs to be updated, amended and increased. The lease payment has been $350 per month from January through April and $600 for the other eight months of the year. The council determined to discuss the matter further with City Attorney Katie Schroeder before determining a course of action on the contract.
The sidewalk project is ongoing and is now many weeks behind schedule. There is a difference in opinion between the contractor and the city on who will be responsible for completing some of the work which Mayor Duskie said he would address and lay at the feet of the contractor. Eldon Behymer said there are other aspects of the project that still need to be addressed as well which he said the city will handle. The council has the option of asking for liquidated damages due to being significantly past deadline. Mayor Duskie expressed concern, however, that the potential fallout from taking such a step and the expense involved versus the potential return does not warrant taking the action. The council took no action on the matter during the meeting.
Behymer also said the city will have to go back through and backfill most of the areas where sidewalks were poured because they were not adequately completed by the contractor. Mayor Duskie said the contractor had a good plan, but that the execution of it has been subpar. The project was originally supposed to be completed by September, but most of the work has been completed since October and November.
Three sealed bids were then opened for the Glen Elder School Building. The first bid was an expression of interest only without a bid amount included. An offer of $6,000 was received from Doris Searles of Deleware who wants to make part of the building into apartments and another section into an auction house. Another bid was received from Mike Blass of Beloit of $6,599. It was expressed that Blass’s intention is to build apartments in the building. The council moved to approve the sale of the building unanimously.
City Clerk Jerri Senger reported that she had distributed the capital improvement plan. Mayor Duskie said the city needs to put some money away for the water tower in regard to future needs. It should be in good shape for up to 20 plus years, but he felt it was important to start putting money back proactively. He also suggested putting a rotation on skids steers. The current contract is in place for about two more years. He said another “big ticket” item was the future purchase of a tractor to replace the current one.
Senger said bushel checks from Farmway were being put into the water tower fund. Duskie expressed that the electric fund was in good shape, but the sewer and water funds were “not pulling their own weight.”
Senger also said trash cans from Dunstan Trucking will be delivered in mid to late January. There have been a few requests from people who do not want the new trash cans and they will have a discussion with Dunstans to see if accommodations can be made.
Councilman Barry McPeak asked for information on a certificate of deposit belonging to the city valued at about $100,000 which will soon mature. Senger said she is shopping rates but would like to keep all the city CD’s at the same institution.
In closing Mayor Duskie said that there are two potential suitors to replace the CNB branch in Glen Elder. An announcement from the company is expected around the 14th of January.