The Ostrander City Council met on September 13 in regular session, with all members present (Erin Volkart, Pam Kunert, Clerk Chris Hyrkas, Heidi Jones and DJ Start). Sarah Chounard addressed the council, saying she’s aware the current water tower will eventually be moved to a different location, and she asked, “Could I purchase the lot the water tower (currently) sits on?”
She explained that since her home is next to the water tower lot, she’d be interested in buying the lot to build on to her home. Council members said the city attorney would need to be consulted, and also asked Chounard to first bring up her question to the city’s planning and zoning commission. Rick Whitney stated that the water tower probably won’t be moved for several years, perhaps as many as five years from now. Chounard said that’s OK, she’s not in a hurry.
Dustin Tart gave an update on city maintenance, particularly the need for a new snow plow. There was discussion about whether to purchase or lease, or even to “hire out” for the city’s snow plowing needs. He will check into the pricing options if the city were to lease a new plow, and bring that info to the next regular meeting. Rick Whitney gave an update on the wastewater treatment plant, and the council OK’d a couple of minor equipment purchases for the WWTP. Brian Miner gave an update on the fire department.
Police Chief Tom Mosher gave his final update as the police chief. He reported on August and September, since he was on vacation at the time of the August council meeting. Chief Mosher said the National Night Out event was well attended, and he thanked the Lions Club for their involvement. He reported on a few issues with dogs running loose. He also said there’s a felony case trail that he expects to run on into October, and said he’ll participate even if it is beyond his September 29 retirement date. Mosher also explained that he’ll spend a significant amount of time this month going through equipment, so that everything gets turned in where it belongs when he retires. He added that he’s OK with the sheriff’s staff calling him as needed, since so much of what he’s done for Ostrander over the past eight years is information that only he knows, and he realizes that the new law enforcement staff will likely need to sometimes get “the rest of the story.” Council members thanked Mosher for his years of service, and said he’ll be missed. He replied that he has no plans to leave the area.
The council discussed whether or not the city should adopt the Fillmore County Feed Lot Ordinance. This is regarding a property that Pam Kunert said causes a considerable odor in town, due to cattle manure. The council chose to take no action at this time, but will review the information and resume discussion at the October meeting.
The council approved paying EMRs for their time in trainings and meetings (Volkart abstained). The council also approved payment of invoices, including roughly $14,000 to Bolton & Menk for the infrastructure project, and $527 to the legal firm of Hoversten, Johnson, Beckmann & Hovey, for attorney fees related to the infrastructure project.
The council set a special meeting for Tuesday, September 26 at 6 p.m. to make a decision on the proposal to contract for law enforcement services through the county sheriff. Other issues will also be added to the special meeting, as needed. The meeting adjourned about 7:30 p.m. The next regular meeting of the council will be Wednesday, October 11, at 6 p.m. The public is welcome.