Goessel reps assist Lincolnville residents without electricity

The Goessel City Council heard at its Dec. 17 meeting that Councilor Jim Wiens and Public Works Director Karen Dickerson had personally donated supplies and bottled water to the city of Lincolnville to help them deal with the effects of the recent ice storm.

After hearing on the radio that Lincolnville was without electricity for a week, Dickerson called to see what she could do to help. She was told the city of Lincolnville was providing meals to 60 people three times a day. They needed food and disposable tableware. Dickerson delivered the items that Wiens and Dickerson donated.

The Goessel council decided to follow their example and also donate food and supplies. Dickerson was asked to deliver the city?s donation. Dickerson said the Lincolnville community center had been designated as a shelter. Although people came to eat and to stay warm during the day, no one was staying in the center for the night.

The Goessel council reminded the public that the city building is a designated shelter in times of need. Residents who need to stay there can call the city clerk, the mayor, or the public works director to make arrangements.

The city building, city shop and fire station have generator capabilities and could be used for warmth, although it was pointed out those buildings are short on bathroom facilities and have no showers.

The council noted that the shelter is not intended for entertainment purposes.

As a result of the recent ice storm and related electrical issues, Goessel city, school, and church officials had met to discuss options for providing assistance. Dickerson mentioned that Tabor Mennonite Church served a Sunday noon meal to people who did not have electricity.

Streets and snow

Councilor Larry Lindeman commended Dickerson for doing a good job of maintaining city streets.

?I?ve had a lot of compliments? about the streets, he said.

Dickerson said she had used a lot of salt on the roads and had ordered two more pallets.

However, it was noted that the county road leading out of Goessel is not as well-cared for.

?Can we talk to Marion County and ask them to do the road going out of Goessel to the west next time we get ice?? Councilor Rick Freeman asked. Evidently, nothing was done to clear it from the recent ice storm.

?Somebody?s going to get killed out there,? Freeman said.

The council considered the request from Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church to rent the city?s snow removal equipment to clear the church parking lot. The church would pay Dickerson to run the equipment.

After discussing the matter, the council decided the city would not grant the request because city streets are the first priority for Dickerson.

Water park

The council discussed the desire of the Goessel Task Force to create a water play park. Dickerson had printed documentation of how many hours the wells run and how much water they pump. ?A lot of days the wells (all three) are running 24 hours,? she said.

Base said the wells can each pump 60 gallons of water per minute, which equals a combined total of 10,800 gallons per hour.

?That?s it; they won?t do any more than that,? he said. ?I?ve seen the water tower get down to 61 percent with all three wells pumping.?

The council determined the city would need another well in order to support a water park. Dickerson estimated a new well would cost a minimum of $50,000, but $125,000 if an engineer is involved. The suggestion was made that perhaps the task force could include a well in their grant application.

Other business

In other business, the council:

  • decided the city-wide garage sale will be on the second Saturday in June, with a clean-up day the following weekend.

  • heard Police Chief Joe Base report that his department had investigated one harassment case, one battery, one dog complaint and two reports of scamming. He said the fan on the patrol car had been replaced.

  • approved a request from from Dickerson to hire divers to complete a required inspection of the city water tower. She said some towers are drained for inspection, but that wouldn?t be an option for Goessel?s tower. She checked into hiring divers who would inspect the tower and fix any problems they find. They will also give the city a video tape of the inspection. The cost would be about $2,960.

  • discussed the city?s lift station. Wiens said the transfer switch ?died? and needs to be replaced because repair parts are no longer available. Dickerson and Base had not been successful at finding parts.

    ?Some of the wiring needs to be improved,? Wiens added.

    Freeman wondered if replacing the switch could wait.

    Dickerson and Wiens concurred that it needs to be done as soon as possible.

  • heard that Dickerson finished her water class and has also attended a sewer class.

  • considered the request of resident Gertrude Malm to have three dogs instead of the limit of two. She had followed the city?s policy and had obtained signatures of all of her neighbors, giving their permission. She brought the signed petition to the meeting. She said the dogs are small, and she does not expect them to be a problem. They have had the required shots. The third dog was given to Malm?s 83-year-old mother as a birthday present.

  • appointed Rod Franzen to the Goessel Housing Authority. Dickerson will also be new to the group, having been appointed last month.

  • appointed Joe Wuest to the Goessel Recreation Commission. He will fill the position vacated by Fred Schmidt, who served for a number of years. The council expressed appreciation for Schmidt?s dedication.

  • met in executive session to review job descriptions and wages. That discussion will be continued at a future meeting.

  • voted to give Tim Boese a monetary gift as appreciation for his volunteer work as a reserve officer for the city.

  • opened sealed bids for the conference table that had been in the police office. Anita Goertzen had the high bid and will purchase the table for $50.

  • heard from Base that improvements to the police office have been completed. He expressed appreciation to Rod Abrahams for his work in staining and sealing the woodwork and trim for the office.

  • heard that Dickerson had discussed fire hydrant repairs with Fire Chief Larry Jay.

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