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Rushford Council accepts damage settlement for tennis court

Fri, Aug 1st, 2003
Posted in Features

The Rushford City Council accepted the settlement offered by Wausau Insurance for the damage done to the Creekside Park tennis courts and basketball courts at their meeting Monday July 28th. In the settlement the city will receive $10,812 to resurface the courts and $1,625 yearly for a total settlement of around $32,500. This did not include patchwork already done by Central Cable earlier in the year. Although disappointed by the time taken for the settlement (the goal was a totally repaired court by May, 2003), the council appeared satisfied with the final outcome.

Generator Affairs

Eric Hoiland addressed the council during the citizen input time about an Electric Transmission Planning meeting he had recently attended in Rochester. Stating the intent of the meeting was to identify problems with current electric transmission, Hoiland informed the council a "number of lines in southeast Minnesota are going to be rebuilt." Hoiland commented this was new information to him. Previously, Mike Wish from Dairyland Power had told the council no new lines were to be built. While no new lines are in the plans, rebuilds apparently are. In response to a query from Mayor T.S. Roberton, Hoiland told the council the meetings report will be published this fall.

Otomo Engineering was authorized to do a site evaluation of the proposed Winona Street generator site. Engineer Brian DeFrang will determine the suitability of the site based on the slope of the area. If the slope is over twenty-five degrees, the bluff protection zoning will not allow construction at the site. The council does, however, have the option of extending a variance for the construction.

Brian Guenther of Power Plus Engineering has reviewed the specification book for the new generator bids. The new specs call for no manual controls, allow for many alternatives so there will be choices available, and are specific to Rushfords needs. Associated Consultants Engineering (ACE) has been authorized to go out for bids with an ending date of August 24th.

The environmental assessment worksheet requested by a citizen petition will be formally made public. Associated Consultants Engineering will prepare this worksheet at the citys expense.

Revisiting the Silk Stocking School Bus and the

Bridge Path

In an update on the concerns about a school bus parked on private property, Larry Bartelson, city administrator, informed the council Fire Chief Mike Ebner was now involved, looking at fire codes and safety issues. Fillmore County Health Department said they could do nothing unless a specific complaint was filed. There is nothing in the state building code to cover the bus either, which leaves the city to enforce any city ordinance against it. A neighbor of the property submitted pictures of the bus, tires in the area, and the electrical service to the bus. Bartelson was directed to speak with the owner about the situation.

Updating the council about the citizen request for the replacement of a path under the north end bridge, Bartelson told the council that MNDOT would agree to installing more sidewalk to the Center Street crosswalk at the citys cost. Because it would be in MNDOT right-of-way, the sidewalk would need to be engineered and meet state specs. This would obviously be an expensive solution.

Jeff Copley, Public Works Director, offered the suggestion that the city could use a gravel maintenance path under the bridge to allow machinery to reach the dike structure and the park for mowing and upkeep. Copley noted there would be nothing to prevent citizens from walking on such a path.

Other business

In other business the council:

approved construction of a home by Jerry Gudmundson with less than required setback;

approved hiring Dunn Blacktopping for more street patching in the city;

chose to have Sentenced to Serve program individuals do the re-roofing of the emergency services building (ambulance and fire department) at a cost of $4,090 for materials;

agreed to pay a share of a new fence to be built at the substation site by Alliant Energy because the citys new access road wais higher;

patted Mike Thern and Tom Owen on the back for their outstanding work at the Rushford Airport;

learned that the water in the faulty substation transformer had gotten in during the manufacturing process. Although the council felt the manufacturer should cover the full cost of repair, they were informed that was unlikely to happen.

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