Goessel council OKs additional stop signs to slow traffic

The Goessel City Council voted during its April 18 meeting to install additional stop signs at the intersection of Prospect and Church streets, near the city park.

Residents who live near the park had complained to Karen Dalke, public works employee, and Eric Reed, police chief, about drivers who speed in that area.

Anita Goertzen, city clerk, said many children cross that intersection on their way to the park.

Mayor Peggy Jay reminded the council, ?School’s going to be out soon,? and more children will spend a considerable amount of time at the park.

Council members expressed concern for safety of drivers and children.

The Church/Prospect intersection already has two stop signs that stop drivers on Prospect. The council voted to purchase two more stop signs and install them on Church Street, which will make that intersection into a four-way stop.

The council also voted to purchase four signs that say ?four-way? to be installed on the stop signs.

The public is reminded that the speed limit on the side streets is 20 mph. The council discussed the issue of drivers speeding on Church Street.

Reed said, ?Besides Main, that?s the second busiest street in town.?

Councilor James Wiens said drivers speed on Buller and Marion streets too, near the high school.

Fireworks plans

Goertzen informed the council that the high school FFA and the Joyful Noise Childcare Center would like to sell July 4 fireworks as a money-raiser. But Goertzen said that is not allowed under the city?s current ordinance.

Paula Flaming, deputy clerk, said she had contacted the city?s attorney, Bob Brookens. He had checked into the matter and found that common fireworks are accepted by the county.

Noting that some nearby towns charge $2,000 for a fireworks permit, the council voted to allow the sale of fireworks within the city and to charge $2,000 for a permit. But non-profit groups will not be charged the fee.

Flaming had checked with other towns and found that is ?very typical.? The council approved permits for FFA and Joyful Noise. The permit will need to state where the fireworks will be sold.

The sale of fireworks will be allowed only on private property, not on city-owned property.

The sale of fireworks will be allowed from 8 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. June 27 to July 4. Residents will be allowed to shoot fireworks from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. July 1 to 3, and from 8 a.m. to midnight on July 4.

Only Class C fireworks will be allowed.

?If the county has a ban, it would be a ban in the city, too,? Flaming said.

The city?s fireworks ordinance is not for New Year?s Eve. Fireworks on that day are not allowed.

Other business

In other business, the council:

? changed the date of the May meeting to May 23 because of eighth-grade graduation May 16, the normal meeting date.

? listened to school superintendent John Fast, art teacher Brian Stucky and pastor Linda Ewert talk about a group that had been formed following the community meetings hosted by the school.

The group is planning ?Goessel Community Showcase? events May 5 and June 11. The first event will highlight the school?s spring barbecue and band and choir concert May 5.

The second event will be a ?Community Treasure Hunt? June 11, the day of city-wide garage sales.

? discussed other options for bringing people into town. Councilor Duane Duerksen suggested a sign at the highway listing the city?s businesses.

Boese suggested using state and county incentives. Flaming will contact the county for information. Reed noted that a number of other area towns host softball tournaments. The council discussed the city?s two baseball diamonds and had noticed that only one is used.

? heard from Reed that Jake Smucker submitted the winning design for a police patch. The design incorporates police identification and is unique to the community with a threshing stone and wheat.

Reed said he plans to send a copy of the badge to the Fallen Officers website in honor of John Morgan, a police officer who was shot and killed at Goessel years ago.

? listened to Reed’s suggestion of instituting a Neigh?bor?hood Watch program.

? discussed needs at the city park. Dalke said shingles had been torn off a building. Coun?cilor Larry Lindeman suggested tearing down the shelter house and erecting a new one.

? discussed erecting new basketball goals at the park. The council discussed various types of goals that are available and will gather more information before making a decision.

Ryan Hoopes, who coaches basketball, football and track, had sent a letter to the council requesting new goals.

The council discussed the option of purchasing adjustable goals but noted the damage that could occur. Flaming had obtained information and found that adjustable goals could cost $1,048 each.

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