At the October 10 Harmony City Council meeting, a quote in the amount of $14,000 from Midwest Surface Coatings was reviewed for seal coating the splash pad. As stress cuts weren’t added when it was poured, the concrete is cracking and needs to be seal coated to protect it. Unfortunately, the Park Board does not have the budget to do the project at this time. “In order to preserve it and keep it viable for the future, we thought it necessary to move forward,” council member Jesse Grabau stated. City Clerk Samantha Grabau recommended borrowing money from the city’s 401 capital improvement fund which the Park Board could pay back over time. Council member Michael Himlie asked if it would be possible to talk to an expert about whether the concrete should have stress cuts placed before sealing it, adding that he wanted to be sure the council was focusing on long-term planning to avoid issues like this coming up unexpectedly in the future. Several members of the council didn’t feel that it was necessary to do so as the concrete has already been looked at by a representative from Midwest Surface Coating and he didn’t mention needing to stress cut it first. As winter is approaching, the seal coating needs to be done as soon as possible. It was also noted that this should be the last big expense for the splash pad as everything else on it is done. A motion to accept the bid for seal coating the splash pad was passed.
The consent agenda was approved and included the minutes of the September meeting, the claims and September checks, the cash in CD, cash balances, along with the renewal of the city’s participation in the MMUA Safety Management Program.
The council reviewed a lead abatement order for a resident of Harmony. A complaint had been received about flaking paint on the resident’s home, and a letter was mailed to him in July informing him of the ordinance violation and asking him to mitigate it. The property owner tested the paint and confirmed that it was positive for lead. The lead abatement on the home has not taken place yet, but the resident did inform the city at the end of September that he has awarded a bid to a contractor to do the lead abatement project and that work would start around late October or early November. Clerk Grabau stated that she would like to see a more firm timeline for the project to ensure its completion in a timely manner. A motion was approved declaring the flaking paint a nuisance which will give the property owner 30 days to have it removed.
Brett Grabau from Stantec asked the council to approve Task #3, a preliminary survey, for the 2024 proposed street project. At last month’s meeting, he had presented the feasibility study for the project, and a public hearing will be held during the November council meeting. He noted that with winter coming, it would be best to get the survey done sooner rather than later. Even if the city decides not to move forward with the project, the cost of the survey won’t be wasted as the results will be good in the future as well. Task #3 was approved.
The PTAC systems in the council chamber are due to be replaced as they’re reaching the end of their lifespans. Several quotes were obtained, and it was recommended that the council approve a quote from Kingsley Mercantile in the amount of $6,859 for a mini split unit with two heads. The current units would be repurposed in another room of the community center. The purchase was approved with Council member Domingo Kingsley abstaining.
Arts Board student representative Maddie Bergey graduated last May and is headed off to college, leaving the spot open on the Arts Board. The board recommended Brielle Hjelmeland to fill the position. The council approved the recommendation. “We would like to thank Maddie for her years of service and welcome Brielle to the board,” Mayor Donney said.
Lisa Morken has completed her first year of employment as full-time deputy clerk. The Personnel Committee determined that she has exceeded expectations in her job duties and recommended promoting her to a higher pay grade. “I think she’s done exceptional,” Kingsley stated. The promotion was approved.
The city’s finance clerk resigned as of October 6. The council approved a motion allowing city staff to post for the part-time finance clerk position.
Resolution 23-10 was approved certifying delinquent utilities and services to be collected with 2024 taxes.
Five bids were received for the truck that the city is selling. The council awarded the sale to the high bid of $10,400.
Erika Thilges gave the Harmony Chamber report. Chamber Director Allison Whalen has resigned to take a job with CEDA. The work she did for the community was greatly appreciated and the Chamber board wishes her all the best in her new job. Chamber programming will continue to run without disruption.
The next Harmony City Council meeting will be held on November 14 at 7 p.m.