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Ellendale City Council

By SCOTT GROTH

Contributing Writer

The Ellendale City Council met February 9 with Mayor Engel and all councilmen present. Also attending the meeting were Clerk Louks, Maintenance Supervisor Swearingen, Municipal Liquor Store consultant Gwen Reiss and Ed Reiss.

The council approved the contract with Steele County for law enforcement protection. The contract calls for a minimum of 19 patrol hours per week in addition to its regular county-wide obligations, with seven days coverage per week. Coverage will be close to 2.71 hours per day but shall be as evenly spread over the seven days as is practical. The city will pay to the county a monthly fee of $3,166 with the payments to be made quarterly. The contract will terminate on December 31, 2012 unless both parties wish to extend the agreement. The contract may be terminated by either party with a 90-day written notice.

Roger Swearingen was called upon for his monthly report. Swearingen started by telling the council he had received two quotes for a new overhead door for the property recently acquired by the city on 8th Ave.

The bids were $1100 and $924 for the door. The council approved the bid of $924. 

Swearingen next asked the council to consider road repairs for 2012. Council members also asked about seal coating some of the better roads in town. The council agreed to have the city engineer, along with Swearingen, write down the streets and specs of work to be done. This will put all bidders on the same playing field. 

Swearingen then noted that some digging had been done near 8th Ave. to inspect for a potential water leak. They found no leak in the city’s pipes; however, the water continues to run. Swearingen thought the leak could be in the homeowner’s pipes. 

Swearingen was asked to designate the Ellendale Community Building as a shelter for NRHEG Elementary students. This would be in case of a real emergency at the NRHEG site. The council approved the designation. 

Swearingen would like to see the council consider putting in a fill valve on the well by the Community Building. This new source could be used for filling water trucks, instead of the water that is treated out of the new tower. The council asked Swearingen to put together some figures for the council to consider. 

Swearingen informed the council of two residents that have more animals than permitted by ordinance.

Gwen Reiss, Municipal Liquor Store, gave the council her update on the MLS. Reiss stated that the MLS had a spot inspection and received a superior rating. She went on to say that 30-35 percent of the sales at the MLS have been for food. Reiss told the council that she was looking at the hours for food sales. 

Reiss also noted she had been in contact with the band The Fabulous Love Handles for Ellendale Days. Reiss noted that the band might be a little more expensive than previous bands, but they also have a big following. The council agreed to try the band for Saturday night. Reiss next passed out some information about new registers and countertops for council members to look at. These were some items that will need to be updated in the future.

The claims for the evening were presented for approval. The claims totaled $194,949.38 with $158,451.23 of that going for 8th Ave. construction costs. The council approved the claims.

The council approved the minutes from the January 26 public and regular meeting.

Clerk Louks next reported his items. Louks said there has been some confusion on water bills just sent out. Some customers did not see the credit to their account from the month previous. Louks said the next month’s bill will reflect the correct amount. Louks next told the council the liquor liability insurance is due. The bill is $10,375. This is a yearly payment. The council moved to pay the bill.

Mayor Engel was next with his items for discussion. Engel told the council he was looking at vehicle insurance for the city. Engel noted that the CERT bus was costing the city $1,103 for just liability. The reason for this, he responded, was because the vehicle was labeled as a mini-bus for hauling people. 

After some discussion, the council tabled any action to a future meeting. Engel next brought to the council’s attention the garbage containers the city has. The city could get some new ones the city would rent. Or, they could refurbish the current ones. The council will get some prices on fixing the old ones before making a decision. 

During open discussion, Councilman Goebel reported what work had been done on the city pick-up. The council also discussed the generators the city had acquired. The city needs to decide if they will keep them or return one or all.

The next meeting of the Ellendale City Council will be February 23 at 7:30 p.m.

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