Goessel council hears presentation about sewer project options

The Goessel City Council discussed limits for fireworks at its June 19 meeting.

The city will allow the discharge of fireworks on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, June 30 through July 3, until midnight and on Tuesday, July 4, until 11 p.m.

The council granted a request from Goessel Men­no­nite Church to close a portion of the street in front of the church for a 15-minute fireworks show on Sunday evening, July 2.

Sewer project

The council also spent a considerable amount of time discussing a possible sewer project. Rose Mary Saunders, with Ranson Financial Consultants, discussed funding with the council. She said the business name will be changing to Ranson Financial Group and will include City Code as part of the group.

Saunders mentioned Brian Foster, an engineer with BG Consultants in Manhattan, can help the city with a USDA loan. Foster was at last month’s council meeting to talk about the city’s sewer system.

Foster talked about various requirements for grants and loans, such as raising water and sewer rates. He said the city’s water/sewer rate is too low.

The council discussed “infiltration and inflow” with Foster last month and again with Saunders at the June 19 meeting. Infiltration and inflow refers to the water that enters the sewer line through cracks and holes in the pipe. It should not be coming into the sewer system.

The city hired Mayer Specialty Services to video-tape the sewer lines to identify areas where the water is entering the system. Mayer Specialty cleaned the sewer lines and also repaired some manholes. The cost was $41,500.

City Clerk Jennifer Whitehead and Karen Dalke, public works director, said they have continued to watch footage of the sewer line videos. Dalke told the council, “there are a lot of areas” where water is entering the sewer system and mentioned two places that are “gushers.” One is 8 feet deep, and the other is 10 feet deep. She warned the council the city would be fighting plugged lines if those don’t get fixed.

The council decided to fix those two areas.

Saunders suggested the city apply for both a community development block grant and a USDA loan. Saunders could work on the CDBG. The council voted to hire her for a maximum of $2,500. Saunders suggested the city ask Phillip Fishburn to work on a USDA loan for the project.

Saunders encouraged city representatives to attend a Kansas Inter-agency Advi­sory Committee meeting in Topeka later in June. Mayor Dave Schrag, Whitehead, and Dalke plan to go. Saunders plans to attend the meeting with them, as well as Foster. Saunders said the meeting is an important step in financing the project.

MCCEDC visit

The council heard a presentation by Russell Groves, representing the Marion County Com­munity Eco­nomic Develop­ment Corp. MCCEDC is a new venture with a goal of economic development for Marion County.

Groves said the MCCEDC board is searching for a director. Currently, Groves and two other people who attended the meeting with him are interim directors.

Craig Dodd, who is on the MCCEDC board and one of the interim directors, talked about Work Force One, which is responsible for the development and implementation of the Work Force Innovation and Opportunity Act. It was recently signed into law and replaces the Work Force Investment Act.

The goal is to grow the work force by providing trades education to keep people in Marion County instead of moving away to find jobs elsewhere. He said Work Force One has money available for continuing education tuition assistance, with a July 1 application deadline.