There are a number of problems that need to be taken care of regarding water lines, sanitary sewer lines and the storm sewer system, it was noted at the Cherokee City Council meeting on Tuesday.
Mark Napier, water department supervisor, referred to water lines put in decades ago where service is shared by more than one home.
"The way our city code is written today, these would not be allowed," Napier said.
Napier gave five examples where two or more properties are served by the same line. He said that there are undoubtedly more properties involved than those cited. The individual homes are metered separately but it is not possible to shut off water to an individual home without shutting off water to others on the same line.
Napier referred to a recent problem when a large water bill was accumulated at a house on West Locust but there was no way to shut the water off without shutting the water off at the house of a neighbor who regularly paid the water bill.
It was speculated that the properties connected by a single line were at one time properties that were either owned by or built by the same individual and the shared line was a cost saving measure. Now some of the shared lines go under structures creating potential added expense for putting in curb stops for each property.
The options that Napier wants the city to consider include: regard each of the lines in question as a city line up to where it splits off and goes to each house, regard it as a shared service line between affected parties with any expense for repair or adjustment billed to the property owners or bring each case to the council for a decision on a case by case basis.
The council took no action on the matter Tuesday.
Jim Agnitsch, street department supervisor, discussed the need for storm sewer work at the housing projects referred to as additions in town.
He said the Doherty Addition has a well-engineered storm sewer system but the other additions do not. In some situations, homes drain water directly into the sanitary sewer, increasing expense to the city for adding large amounts of rain water to be treated at the wastewater treatment plant.
The city now collects a $3 per month fee on the bills of water users specifically for storm sewer work. There is currently $183,000 in this fund. The city authorized an engineering study for storm sewer improvements at the Ament Addition. This will be the first of a series of storm sewer improvements to reduce the amount of rain water put into the sanitary sewer system.
The city received no bids for a water line replacement project on East Main Street, although Four contractors were contacted on. It will not be known how extensive a project putting a line under the bridge at Railroad Creek will be until digging actually starts on the project. The city will consider other options for the project.
Linda Peterson informed the council that the roof at the community center has deteriorated to the point where she can see light. She has sought pricing information from Ida Grove Roofing regarding roof replacement and roof repairs along the seems.
Ida Grove Roofing estimated $6,780 for the repairs but did not have a cost estimate for roof replacement in time for the council meeting.
She noted that the roof repairs would be a temporary fix with more extensive work likely needed at a later time.
Council members indicated a preference for the roof replacement rather than the temporary solution.
Jim Peck, council member, suggested that the department heads meet with the city council on a monthly basis to give updates. This was became a motion that the department heads meet with the council on a staggered basis, some meeting with the council during the first meeting of the month and some during the second meeting.
The council set a date of Oct. 24 for a public hearing on street sweeper financing and also set a date of Oct. 24 for a public hearing on interim financing for the Aquatic Center project.