Spring Grove’s City Council met Tuesday, March 21 at 168 West Main Street in Room 100 from 6-7:30 p.m. Council members present included Mayor Saundra Solum, Karen Folstad, Trent Turner, and Chad Rohland. Council member Heather Edgington was absent. In addition, Clerk/Administrator Jana Elton attended.
The city council adopted the agenda and approved the consent agenda after one small modification. Item #4 on the consent agenda had been moved to old business instead.
Open forum had no comments.
A public hearing took place in regards to traffic congestion involving one block north of Main Street on 2nd Avenue NE and one block south of Main Street on 2nd Avenue SE with the area being a one-way road. Discussion involved whether to implement alternate side parking or one-sided year-round parking as a means to alleviate traffic congestion. Spring Grove resident Mike Moen acknowledged the current situation creates difficulty for both cars and school buses to get through. Moen expressed concern over the snow plow not plowing close enough to the curb, resulting in four feet of road being lost. Clerk/Administrator Elton shared her personal experience with difficulty navigating through the stated area as well. Elton shared letters from concerned Spring Grove residents. In the end, the city council approved the inclusion of the designated area being one-sided parking year round.
There was concern over cars driving in excess speed through the area designated as one-sided parking year round due to the nearby daycare. One concerned Spring Grove resident recommended placing a Children At Play sign in the given area as a warning for drivers to slow down. The inclusion of a speed bump had been brought to attention too, however, the speed bump itself may bring problems for snow plows.
Spring Grove’s City Council will hold a closed meeting Monday, March 27 at 6 p.m. to address the inclusion of a for sale sign for the municipal liquor store in town.
Amanda Myhre of Frodo’s Legacy – All Animal Rescue addressed the council with a possible solution for Spring Grove’s current ongoing feral cat problem. Myhre proposed the council consider funding TNR (trap, neuter, release) towards 40-60 feral cats inhabiting Spring Grove’s city limits. For those unfamiliar with TNR, the program consists of trapping feral cats then spay/neuter them in turn release these cats back to their environment. Myhre had a professional in mind who would do a TNR along with vaccinations for $40 per cat. Myhre recommended to target feral sewer cats first. The council approved funding TNR towards 40 feral cats within city limits.
The council and Myhre discussed the root cause of the feral cat problem occurring in Spring Grove. A number of residents continuously feed feral cats which results in the cat(s) returning or additional cats visiting in search of food. The feral cats roaming about pose a risk for transmission of disease, they bother house cats that venture outdoors, and drive dogs crazy. The city council approved enforcement of Spring Grove’s three pet per household ordinance. The enforcement stems from a number of Spring Grove residents feeding these feral cats and even housing them periodically without registering the cat with the city or vaccinating the cat.
Two alleys received a name, one entitled Northwest Alley with the other entitled Sylling Alley. The two alleys received names to be complaint with E911 signage requirements.
The council approved Item #4 that got moved to old business which included Resolution 23-16, Making Certain Findings with respect to a Substandard Building.
An open bid took place for the sale of Spring Grove’s warming shed. The warming shed sold for $3,004 to Dawn Sylling. In the event Sylling does not claim the shed, the second highest bidder, being Bob Morken, will receive the shed. The warming shed will need to be claimed by Monday, May 1.
The council unanimously approved to close Maple Drive on the west side of the park and 1st Avenue NE on the east side of the park Friday, May 19 through Sunday morning, May 21 for Spring Grove’s yearly Syttende Mai.
Council member Folstad shared local author Lizzy Hershberger had been scheduled to visit Spring Grove Public Library Thursday, March 9 for a book talk and signing. Due to inclement weather, Hershberger’s visit got rescheduled to Monday, April 3 at 6:30 p.m.
The next regular Spring Grove City Council meeting will be held Tuesday, April 18 at 168 West Main Street in Room 100. The public is invited to attend.