Florence City Council hears input from city and community

Discussion at the July 21 meeting of the Florence City Council centered on reports from city employees as well as community members.

Bill Henricks with the Insurance Planning Center met with council about the city’s insurance coverage. He said city properties have been surveyed and replacement value assessed, and reported coverage on city vehicles.

City Manager Stuart Funk said he’s gathered bids for replacing the city’s missing chainsaw. The lowest bid was accepted and a spare chain will also be purchased for the new chainsaw.

Funk said construction has begun at the water treatment plant and builders have 120 days to complete the project.

He also said Holiday Motel owners are “highly opposed” to running a water line across their property to new construction, so the line will need to be routed elsewhere. A survey to discern exact boundaries of the city right-of-ways will be necessary.

Funk relayed Mike and Trayce Warner’s gratitude for removing branches on their property. Tim Parmley expressed concern that branches had not been removed from the street and could end up blocking ditches. He asked that property owners that remove trees from their property sweep up remnants from the street.

Bill Dyar of the Housing Authority reported the purchase of a property which was considered “a blight” and will be cleaned out. He said ditches near Carriage Manor units need cleaning.

Dyer also reported on Chamber of Commerce activities, such as repainting the “Welcome to Florence” signs, providing the stone welcome sign on U.S. Highway 77, and purchasing a water fountain.

The Chamber also intends to paint the city swimming pool. Work-release help will be sought for beautification activities.

In other business:

the council went into executive session for 10 minutes to discuss personnel matters.

Howard Taylor was offered a settlement of $2,500 to release any claims against the city over his former employment with the city.

Plans to repair sinkholes on Steve Hett’s property will be delayed until receipt of further study results.

The ball field concession stand was reportedly in disrepair and a manhole cover was reportedly dislodged

The contract with Rick Burcky for the Florence Web site was amended for clarification.

Timothy Wolfe was hired as police chief, assuming the routine background check is acceptable.

The job description for city clerk was approved.

Motion to include an Ethics Code Standard of Conduct for city workers was dropped due to lack of a second.

Bev Wiebe’s request to allow Stutzman’s Recycling to provide individual service at an approximate cost of $4 per month was approved.

A request for a street light on the U.S. Highway 50 exit will be tabled until a later date.

Ed Robinson suggested recruiting volunteer labor for tree-trimming

Dan Ludwig reported the city had been offered use of a road grader, which will be tested out on various dirt roads in town.

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