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Discussions on the swimming pool and property matters comprised the bulk of the June 6 agenda of the Mount Ayr city council.
City administrator Brent Wise shared updates on the state of the current swimming pool at Judge Lewis Park and from the public meeting held recently concerning options for refurbishing or replacing the current pool.
Wise said the Judge Lewis pool is experiencing higher than normal water leakage to the point the water is reaching a nearby creek.
He estimated the pool is losing approximately 16,000 gallons of water per day, more than the normal 7,000-10,000 gallons. To put the loss in perspective, Wise later estimated the 16,000 gallons would be the equivalent of 8-9 months of individual patron use.
As a result of the water loss, Wise also reported the pool is requiring much more chlorine than normal. He said a tank of chlorine normally lasts approximately four-to-five weeks. Lately, one tank lasts only 17 days.
In reference to the initiative to rehab or replace the current pool, Wise shared comment sheets from the recent public meeting on the future of the pool.
It was noted the majority of comments from the public meeting favored constructing a new pool rather than renovating the current pool.
Because the meeting drew a smaller than expected audience, JEO Consulting recommends the city seek further responses by placing a comment box at the pool and inviting online comments for a period of two weeks.
All past and new comments will be compiled and reported by JEO at the July 5 council meeting.
• The council approved primary and alternate list of applicants for the CDBG Housing Rehabilitation Program pending income verifications.
The primary list includes properties located at 704 E Van Buren St., 505 E Adams St., 307 E Adams St., 706 N Webster St., and 303 S Harrison St.
The alternate list includes properties located at 800 N Taylor, 112 Dunning Ave., 304 W Madison, 304 E Adams and 305 S Webster.
• Following a video closed session with attorney Abigail Hillers, the council moved forward with two property -related items:
• the council approved a proposal to acquire two-thirds of a parcel of ground owned by David Cunning on South Fillmore Street. The purchase of $5,000 is pending upon approval of variances from the city board of adjustment.
• the council approved seeking utility easements on a parcel of property at the north end of Sunset Lane owned by Doug Hymbaugh. City administrator Brent Wise recommended easements also be sought for property to the east of Hymbaugh’s parcel.
• the council learned acquisition of a five-acre parcel of property being gifted to the city by the Strange family should be finalized within 60 days.
It was noted, however, the property appears among parcels to be sold at the June 20 tax sale.
Attorney Hillers was unaware of the tax sale and told the council she would investigate how a potential sale would impact the transaction with the city.
• in a related item, property owner David Zollman appeared before the council during the public forum portion of the meeting to ask for more time to bring his properties in line with city nuisance ordinances.
Zollman said he is making progress on alleviating the nuisances multiple properties, but he feels he will be unable to meet the 90-day deadline to complete the improvements.
After some discussion, the council did not extend the 90-day time limit but invited Zollman back to report his progress at the July 5 council meeting.
If he can show significant progress by that time, the council reserved the right to extend the time limit at that meeting.
In other business the council:
• learned the demolition and debris removal of the old laundromat behind the former Odd Fellows building at 106 E. Madison Street is complete.
As part of the Housing grant application, the city had pledged up to $10,000 toward the project. Administrator Wise reported the cost of the demolition and clean-up had totaled $9,574, with the remainder able to go to attorney’s fees.
• approved the renewal of a Class C Beer Permit for rAyr Market.
• approved the hiring of Carrie Main as a little league coach.
• learned Windstream will need to re-bore an underground line before construction can begin on Van Buren Street.
• learned bids should be in by June 10 for reconstruction of Valley West Drive.
Bids will be accepted for two alternatives: concrete driving surface with concrete curb and gutter or asphalt driving surface with concrete curb and gutter.
Bids will be opened at the June 20 council meeting.
• approved rehabilitation of the city’s sickle mower at Vetters Equipment for $1,274.03.
• approved the use of the city logo in support of an initiative to create a Ringgold Center, a recreational/educational facility in the early planning stages.