Goessel council reviews report on local water projects

The Goessel City Council discussed the preliminary engineering report on potential water-system projects during its March 20 meeting.

Jesse Sullivan of BG Consultants was on hand to explain the findings. The council felt it received enough information to determine that its next step in replacing fire hydrants and valves should be to contact Rosemary Saunders of Ranson Financial.

Saunders is a municipal finance consultant who can offer advice on loans, grants and bonds that could apply to the project that the city of Goessel is interested in pursuing.

Mayor Dave Schrag, addressed the need for the replacements, citing the example that water to the high school has to be shut off if there is a leak nearby. It has happened, he added, once during a ball game.

“We need to add more valves,” Schrag said. “We need to be able to isolate.”

Councilor Kevin Klassen agreed, “I just want to move along on this water issue.”

Councilor transition

The council accepted the resignation of Councilor Rollin Schmidt. Schrag expressed appreciation for Schmidt’s work on the council.

“Rollin did a fine job serving on the city council, and I really appreciated his input and willingness to help where he could,” he said.

Schrag noted that Schmidt had been a Goessel police officer before joining the city council, and “did a fine job with that as well…. I would just like to say thanks, Rollin, for your support in the Goessel community.”

Schrag said he had contacted several people about filling Schmidt’s unexpired term on the council. Ben Schmidt accepted the invitation and was appointed.

Ben Schmidt will be affirmed at a future council meeting. Schrag felt that Ben Schmidt’s maintenance work at the Goessel junior/senior high school will be an asset as the school and city work together on various issues. Schrag commented that he is looking forward to working with Schmidt.

Other business

In other business, the council:

n appointed Zach Hudlin as a new part-time police officer for the city. Schrag said Hudlin, who was at the meeting, works for the Marion County sheriff’s department and part-time for the city of Peabody.

“I feel that Zach will be a great asset to our city,” Schrag said, added that he is looking forward to working with Hudlin.

Schrag administered the oath of office and affirmed Hudlin for his position.

n heard in the police report from Wilma Mueller that there were no firm leads regarding the home invasion that occurred recently. The police are following up on concerns at other residences and also a break-in at the storage facility.

n heard that someone had dumped a black vibrating car seat and a pillow at the city’s burn site. The public is reminded that such items are in violation of regulations.

n heard from City Clerk Jen­nifer Whitehead that the city’s insurance rate is lower since switching to Berkshire Hathaway. The city currently pays $14,079 for everything the city needs to insure, compared to the previous rate of $20,777 with a different company.

n decided to add cyber insurance to the policy. It would include protections for a data breach, virus and related problems.

n voted to also add insurance for volunteers, which required only a minimal cost addition to the policy.

n denied a request for having three dogs located at a residence. The city ordinance states a limit of two dogs at any one address. The council would have had to grant approval for a third dog.

n discussed ditches.

n heard from Councilor Larry Lindeman that there had been concerns expressed about the city park.

n heard Councilor Dean Snelling report he had raked leaves at the city park.

n discussed finding a different material for the playground at the city park, but the council backed off when it heard how much it would cost.

n talked about the newer tornado siren, which can be activated at a distance by emergency personnel using their radios. It was tested recently and works as it should.

The public should note that the siren is meant to warn people who are outside so they will seek shelter. This siren replaced the older siren because that one was not working. At this meeting, there was some discussion about trying to fix the old siren again.

n discussed street issues. Schrag said it is best to grade the streets after it rains because the base can be messed up if the streets are graded when dry.

n heard that Whitehead plans to attend the Com­munity Development Block Grant annual workshop in Newton in April.

n heard that Schrag and Whitehead plan to meet with auctioneer Van Schmidt to discuss selling the remaining lots of the Harvest Meadows addition.

n approved a permit for a fence and a permit for a shed.