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Spring Valley City Council cleans up old business at meeting

Fri, May 2nd, 2014
Posted in Spring Valley Government

One of the oldest issues that the Spring Valley City Council addressed at its most recent meeting was the passage of an ordinance that provides for the regulation, maintenance and occupancy of rental housing in Spring Valley. According to the ordinance the public health will be protected, as well as the safety and the general welfare of the people of the city. It will protect the character and stability of residential areas within the city. It will also correct and prevent housing conditions that adversely affect or are likely to adversely affect the life, safety, general and welfare and health including standards for cooking, heating, and sanitary equipment necessary to the health and safety of occupants of buildings. Minimum standards for the maintenance of existing residential buildings will be provided in the ordinance to prevent slums and blight and to preserve the value of land and buildings throughout the city.

Before the action was taken Janelle Roe spoke to the Council and had several questions regarding the implementation of the ordinance so she, as a property owner, can plan ahead regarding charges and cycles of approval.

The seven-page document was discussed at great length and then came the motion to approve. There were four “yes” vote and the one dissenting vote was cast by Todd Jones. Jones was contacted after the meeting and was asked about his vote. He told the Fillmore County Journal that he believes it’s the wrong time for passing ordinances such as the Rental Ordinance. He continued to say, “I just don’t feel comfortable in passing this when we have other issues that need the council’s attention.”

It was unclear as to when the ordinance will go into effect, but when it does it will cost $25 per year starting in February.

The council and city officials thanked Librarian Dianne Swenson-Sikkink for the years she served our community and held an open house on Wednesday. Hiring of a new librarian will be approved for Jennifer Simon.

The council approved the labor and material for a public restroom to cost $58,060. The city can save $4,900 if city staff can do some of the work themselves. Those items by city staff includes excavating, sand and rock fill, paint allowance, landscaping allowance, trash removal and final cleanup. The bid was awarded to Bruce Kraut Construction, LLC of Spring Valley.

Approval was given to close Broadway from just south of Subway to Main Street along with Courtland and Jefferson to the alleys on both sides of the streets. The dates of closure will be May 23, July 25, August 22 and September 26. Downtown businesses are being encouraged to extend their business into the street to promote walking, jogging, bicycling and other forms of non-motorized transportation are being planned.

John Fenske of the Parks Department informed the council that the Community Center has received a new furnace and the senior citizens are basking in the warm air coming from the unit. Troy Lange of the fire department reported things have been rather slow but they did take part in the mock drill at the Kingsland High School.

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