Extra expenses absorbed by City

Sheriff Mike Miner addresses the Lime Springs City Council as Tony Roberts, Eric Munkel and Darrel Knecht look on.

It’s a good thing that Lime Springs’ population increased from the last census, but with it come some negatives, the City Council learned at the June 7 meeting. City Clerk Carla Moser informed the group because the population went over 500 to 505, the City now has to do more testing of the water system, which costs a little more money.

Sheriff Mike Miner was on hand to talk about the building near the water tower which houses equipment for the repeater system. He informed the Council things didn’t work out exactly as first thought, which was at no cost for the city. “The whole project is about $800,000 and we found we need about $7,000 from each community.” You could have heard a pin drop.

He then laughed and said it wasn’t that much and turned the discussion over the Emergency Management Director Darrel Knecht, who thanked Miner for scaring him to death!

Knecht said the cost to the city would be about $30.00 for electricity per month for air conditioning and heating. The City agreed to assume the electric bill within the next month.

In other business, the five City entities gave reports.

Fire Department

Fire Chief Tony Roberts said, “We had a good training on Sunday (at Chester). Everything went good for the burn trailer.” He was then reminded he had a slight problem.

Joking, he said, “My (prosthetic) leg fell off in the trailer. I usually don’t go in, but we had an odd number and I said I’d do it.” He added he won’t be doing that again!

He also commented on the turnout for the tornado. “We had 12-14 guys. That’s the most we’ve had in a long time.”

Community Center

No report was given

Library

Janelle Mahr reported the Community Art Show was well attended. “Janet (DeVries) is done with the outreach program to the daycares for the summer. The summer reading program has started for the older group on Wednesday mornings and the younger group in the afternoon.” The monthly activities are all continuing including Bingo, game night, movie night, movie matinee and book discussion group.

She mentioned the Library will be having Bingo on Saturday afternoon of Sweet Corn Days from 1:00-4:00 p.m.

Park and Pool

Moser informed the Council it had voted to allow a minor mow the watertower and it was found he was too young, so the contract for mowing went to the next lowest bid of Bernard Roesler for the summer.

Also, Alex Hayes turned in her application as lifeguard late and needed to be approved by the Council, which they did. The Council also agreed to pay Hayley Ollendick more wages for being assistant manager.

Holly Kitchen gave an update on Brown Park saying the swings were installed. “The Bouncers should be installed by July 4.”

She also wanted to see if signs could be purchased for “Children at Play” and speed limit signs. Council said that would be coming out of the Brown Park funds and not paid for by the City.

Other Business

• Dennis “Navajo” Grabau was not at the meeting, but it was mentioned a tree removal list was still being made for attention this summer.

Duane Copeman asked permission to trim some trees on the Tom Payton residence where the branches were growing into the sidewalk. Council informed him it was okay as long as it was just trimming.

• For several months the Council has been skirting the issue of how to handle removal of sidewalks in town.

Moser reported a phone call she received from Patty at the abstract office. “She said the sidewalk is actually a boundary line. Some survey papers in Lime Springs are over 100 years old. They measure from the sidewalk to the back of the property. It is a monument to go by. She also said if you have something surveyed, it needs to be recorded.”

The sidewalk is not legally part of the survey but something to get a general idea of the property lines.

Michelle Munkel wants to remove her sidewalk. There is no sidewalk on either side and she would like to take it out and seed it.

Mayor Barb Robinson commented, “I have a problem forcing residents to put in or replace a sidewalk when there is no sidewalk around Brown Park, the Swimming Pool, the back of Kitchen Park or the ball park.”

On the Munkel issue, the council said a permit was needed and then it could be removed.

• McGuire Iron finished painting the water tower and sent out a bill for $44,570. plus $1,337 for fuel charge. The fuel charge was not in the contract so they allowed the City to not pay the extra amount. A $1,090 yearly inspection fee was in the contract.

The company was willing to work with the City in paying for the bill but would charge 1.5 percent per month or 18 percent yearly for interest. One of Moser’s suggestions on how to pay for the work included paying it off (there is money in the account at the moment) and borrowing on the operating note if needed in the future at four to eight percent. The Council decided to pay the bill at the July meeting.

• Spring Apartments and the nearby condos each have one meter for the entire complex and each resident pays minimum water. Hilltop Apartments does not have a meter and the minimum is charged on all 15 units, whether they are in use or not. The Council would like a meter installed at Hilltop and look into how the other apartments should be handled.

• Gary Weyers had five sheets of tin damaged when they were hit by a snow removal truck operated by the City. The City will pay him for the damage.

• Howard-Winneshiek (Lime Springs-Chester Elementary) wanted the City to waive finance charges when the water bill was late. The district claims the bill sometimes comes in after the school board meeting when the bills are approved.

It was mentioned the Lime Springs Council has authorized bills be paid when due if they do not come in before the council meeting and thinks the school can do the same, so the finance charges will not be waived.

• Moser reported the Spring Ahead Learning Center was on schedule for taking bids by August with groundbreaking in September. She asked if information about donations could be put in the water bills and was given permission.

• Building permits were approved for Mitch Smith for a fence, Phyllis Stevenson to redo her driveway and for Joyce Koster to replace her sidewalk.

Gary Weyers asked to put in a 20-ft. tall wind turbine in his back yard. The council suggested he get permission from the neighbors and Alliant before getting approval.

• A cigarette permit was issued to Lime Springs Locker and Lime Springs Travel Plaza and a liquor license was issued to KCDs.

• The Council will give new hours for the clerk’s office to be open at the next City Council meeting. That meeting is set for Tuesday, July 5 at 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

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