The Goessel City Council discussed at its May 18 meeting plans for the Bike Across Kansas group that will come through Goessel June 10. The council expects 900 BAK participants to spend a night in Goessel.
Public Works Director Karen Dalke said new crosswalk signs and park signs have been ordered. Two stop signs have already been replaced. Two yield signs have been installed, as well as two ?children at play? signs.
The bridges in town have been painted, as well as the swings at the city building. The large tube at the city park has been anchored and hopefully cannot be moved; the tube is for children to play on, but it has been vandalized in the past.
The council noted the numerous volunteers that will be on hand to help with food during the BAK group?s stay in Goessel. School groups, church groups, the museum, Branding Iron Cafe, Lincoln Perk and community groups are planning food for the bikers, beginning with lunch June 10. Snacks and the evening meal will be available, as well as breakfast on June 11.
Activities for the children will be available at the city library. The high school will be used for meals and the evening entertainment.
The council spent a considerable amount of time considering a proposed ordinance that had been drawn up to allow a permit for alcohol sales in Goessel for special events, including the BAK event.
Council members mentioned concerns of altercations. They also discussed the difficulty of police checking identifications and police permission to enter a residence.
Various councilors mentioned that a number of people had talked to them, expressing opposition to the proposed permit. After lengthy discussion, the council voted not to allow a permit for alcohol sales in the city for special events.
The council discussed the new tornado siren that was installed recently. They noted it is loud enough to be heard several miles out of town. The new siren is electric and has a battery back-up system, so it is operational even when the town loses electricity.
Councilor Dean Snelling said it can be activated remotely. Therefore, it is always available.
The council also discussed the old noon whistle/tornado siren, which are connected. They no longer work. Dalke said she had comments from residents who are grateful that the noon whistle does not work; it was very loud for anyone near it.
She said that the fire department was in charge of the old tornado whistle, and a firefighters had to come to the building to manually push a button to set it off. It did not work if the electric power was out.
Policeman Joe Base said that when the power was out, firefighters would use fire trucks to go street-to-street and use the speaker to warn residents of tornadoes.
In contrast, the new whistle is much easier and safer to operate since no one has to drive through a dangerous storm to get to it, and firemen no longer have to use fire trucks for warning residents when the power is out.
After discussing the feasibility of fixing the old tornado siren/noon whistle, the council decided was no need for either and not worth the expense to try to fix them. The council voted to take down the old noon whistle and tornado siren.
Chickens in town
The council discussed the presence of chickens in town. Mayor Dave Schrag said this was the third meeting this year that the council was discussing chickens.
The issue was on the agenda again this month at the request of residents opposed to allowing chickens in town. Last month, residents in favor of chickens had attended that council meeting.
The city already has an ordinance banning chickens, but the council considered a possible ordinance that would allow them.
Resident Sue Wadkins spoke in favor of keeping the current ordinance. Resident Louann Soukup presented a petition with signatures of residents who do not want chickens in town.
After considerable discussion, the council voted unanimously not to pass a new ordinance allowing chickens, but rather to uphold the current ordinance that does not allow them. Therefore, chickens are not allowed in the city of Goessel.
Then the question arose: What about the chickens that are already in town? Those residents will receive a letter informing them that they have 10 days to remove the chickens from town. It was noted that a rooster is currently in the city.
Schrag said roosters have always been banned. The owners of the rooster will also receive a letter about the city ordinance.
In other business, the council:
? reappointed the following people to city positions: Jennifer Whitehead as city clerk and court clerk; Greg Nickel as municipal judge; Marilyn Wilder as city attorney; and Donna Cook as city treasurer.
? appointed Susie Shipp to the library board. Coun?cilor Rollin Schmidt said, ?They do a very good job. We have a great library.?
? discussed the matter of dogs running free in town, which is against city ordinance.
? heard that the police department had issued one warning for speed and one parking warning. The police worked a burglary case and investigated a report of some shooting. They are also working on issues of bullying and vandalism.
? discussed Main Street with Stuart Porter of Schawb Eaton. Porter said a grant would require an engineer. He also told the council it made a wise decision to not accept the state?s offer to ?give? Goessel the stretch of highway from K-15 to the city limits for $100,000.
? discussed the concession stand building at the baseball diamond with Chad Lindeman, representing the Goessel Recreation Commis?sion.
The GRC will be responsible for the following during the months of May through July: electric bill and water bill, cleaning supplies and paper products for the restrooms, keeping the building clean, taking reservations for the building and finding people to run the concession building during ball games. The city is responsible for the other months of the year.
? conducted a hearing about a vacant house that had been the subject of a petition by some residents. The property has not been maintained, and animals have been seen coming and going from the house.
The owner said he would demolish the house when he has enough money, and he will make it look more presentable in the meantime.
? approved hiring a different business to fix the problem carpet problem in the city building. Stuart Isaac of Hillsboro will pull up the carpet and reinstall it using a different kind of glue. The cost will be $1,495.