The Cherokee City Council last week approved a series of resolutions finalizing City acceptance of the proposal to purchase $350,000 in General Obligation Capital Loan Notes for various Koser Spring Lake Park improvements.
An estimated $250,000 is earmarked for a new maintenance facility for the Cherokee Parks Department, with the remainder targeting Koser Spring Lake Park improvements, including resurfacing of the hiking/biking trail around Spring Lake, new playground equipment, and a proposed outdoor shelter to replace the old one that was dismantled and sold for salvage to make room for the new Yacht Club.
The approved site is on the west side of South 4th Street and contains the former Schoon Building that the City owns and utilized as cold storage for extraneous equipment and materials. The City will utilize that tract and what can be salvaged from other outbuildings there to house the new maintenance building.
Last week, the Council agreed with the new proposal to salvage a 30-foot section of the existing Schoon building, replace the roofing and siding on the existing frame, and then attach a new 50x50 building. The new facility then would be cemented out and heating installed for the Parks maintenance and shop facility.
City Administrator Don Eikmeier said that the City could realize an estimated $50,000 in savings with such a plan, and those monies could be used for other proposed Koser Spring Lake Park improvements.
In other business, the Council approved the second reading of an ordinance amending provisions regarding the removal of snow, ice, and accumulations downtown. The City is proposing amending the ordinance to require Main Street store front owners to remove snow a distance of 18 inches away from the curb line.
Since the City added the nodes in the downtown beautification project on Main Street from 1st to 6th streets several years ago, street crews have had the challenge of cleaning snow and ice without catching the blades on curbing. Other cities facing similar problems require businesses in the downtown to clear snow and ice from their sidewalks and the area 18 inches beyond the curb so the snowplow operator does not have to rub against the curb and damaging it.
The third and final reading will take place at the next City Council meeting Nov. 13. Last week's vote on second reading was 4-1, with Council member Mick Mallory voting against the measure, and Chad Brown, Wayne Pingel, Jim Peck, and Dan Morrow voting for it.
The Council also established Nov. 3-4 for the City's annual Koser Spring Lake Park "goose hunt," a harvesting of a portion of the many geese making the Park their year-around home and creating unsightly and unsanitary problems for park maintenance and the many Park users who visit and hike on the trail around the lake, and the children utilizing the playground areas.
During the hunt, Park Superintendent Duane Mummert closes the Park and coordinates and oversees the hunt, featuring a limited number of registered adults and youths interested in hunting. Mummert estimates the Park's geese population at 600-700.
The Council also approved employing Sara Radke to serve as City Recreation Director while Dave Ellis is serving in the U.S. Army National Guard. Radke, a Cherokee Washington High grad and a recent graduate of the University of Iowa with a degree in Recreation, will work 20 hours per weeek coordinating youth basketball, adult volleyball, and men's basketball programs, as well as developing additional indoor recreation programs and coordinating with the community's senior citizens group.
A contract for a Phase i Archeological Study mandated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the City's Wastewater Effluent Project was approved in the amount of $7,180 with Bear Creek Archeology.
Under new EPA/DNR regulations, the City must merge the industrial (Tyson's Deli) and municipal treated effluents into one stream entering the Little Sioux River. Currently, they feed into the river separately.
"The Cherokee Sewer Site" is a well-known Indian artifacts site discovered in the mid-1970s when the sewer plant was being built and requires archeological study before any construction in that area.
The contract will be paid from the Industrial Wastewater Fund, which is totally funded by Tyson Deli.
The Council last week also received first-time funding requests from the Council Against Assault and Sexual Abuse (CAASA), and Mid-Sioux Opportunities. The Council agreed to look at the request during the February 2013 budgeting process.
The Council appointed Claudia Comstock to the Board of Adjustment, replacing long-time member Kurt Claybaugh, whose term had expired.
The Council also approved a bid of $526 from Jim Conley of Marcus for salvaging the 3-season patio room and two patio doors affixed to the former Yacht Club facility in Koser Spring Lake Park. The old yacht Club will then be razed.