Florence council hears of highway changes around city

Joe Palic from the Kansas Department of Transportation addressed Florence City Council members Aug. 7 about highway work on and around the intersection of U.S. highways 56 and 77.

He told council members that work on U.S. 50 should be completed in about a year and a half, and the U.S. 77 work should be done in about two years.

Palic also discussed the redesign of U.S. 77 between Florence and Marion scheduled to begin in 2005. He said KDOT has recommended that Eighth Street between the two highways be closed and cul-de-sacs be constructed on both sides of the road.

In addition, KDOT will be trying to intersect county roads with U.S. 77 at right angles. The passing lane at Hague’s Hill is set to be removed, and U.S. 77 North will be closed while the work is being done.

The detour will send motorists on U.S. 50 to K-150, then west to Marion. K-150 is slated to be redone next year. Palic said he was open to recommendations from the council. He also said that before KDOT could place signs for the historical museum on highways 50 and 77, the city would need to place signs to direct traffic once motorists were off the highway.

Stuart Funk, city superintendent and water and wastewater technician, reported that he should have the results of his Class 3 water license test soon. He also said he and Chris Cox are still talking with Hanes Equipment concerning the quality of water and the use of a micro-filtration system.

Funk also voiced concerns about the feedlot north of the filter house. He stated that, even with a back-flow prevention system in place, potential health hazards exist, including contamination of the water system with nitrates that could have serious effects on small children.

Council members agreed that city attorney Bob Brookens should be contacted to look into the matter.

In other business, the council:

— approved a liquor license for B.Y.O.B.

— heard a report from Police Chief Howard Kahler that the Fourth of July assistance given Peabody went well. He also reported that the city now has three animal traps available for use by citizens.

— heard from Dan Ludwig of the standards board, who requested the addition of Bill Dyer to the board. Ludwig also asked the council to look into the possibility of cleaning up the weeds in the lot by Fetrow Machine Shop, clean up the Quality Oil Station as well as check the status of cars located on the Robert Bush property. He said the ditch north of the nursing home needs to be cleaned up. Funk said he would look into the ordinances that apply.

— heard a suggestion from Mark Slater that the city look into getting trash carts and possibly the attachment that would enable the carts to be emptied into the garbage truck. The cart rental could be added to water bills if enough interest was generated.

— was told by Barbara O’Dell that the pool would be open through Aug. 27, with the weekday hours changing to 4-8 p.m. when school begins Aug. 17.

All members of the council were in attendance for the meeting.

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