With the last blast of winter that showed up, the City of Rushford Village is eagerly waiting to get started on spring road work and its maintenance shed project. At the April 18 meeting, the council received updates on both, plus the digital water meter installation and a modification to the Village Hall rental policy.
Public Works has a priority list for work on crushed rock roads this year. Some received only added rock last year and will need reclaiming and grading this spring. Councilor Rick Ruberg questioned Supervisor Trenten Chiglo on the reclaiming process. He assumed the equipment would reclaim more rock than is currently being done.
“What’s in the ditch will remain? I thought that’s what the reclaimer was for,” added Councilor Bob Hart.
Chiglo noted that if he attempts to bring in rock from the ditches, he pulls in too much dirt, and the grader sinks on the edges. “It helps shape up a road. It does help for that,” he said. “I could go off further, but because of the extra dirt, it just makes it mud.” He estimated he could reach five feet from the edge at the most.
He also noted the dry weather before the snow helped firm up ditches and that there are spots where he’ll likely make several passes. “That’s why I’d like to get out there early. Three weeks from now, you’ll have basketball-sized clumps,” he added.
The city received only one rock bid, from Bruening Rock. The unit pricing is up from last year, but the city is planning on 3,000 square yards of product, which should cover all road and ice rock needs.
The council rescheduled its annual road tour for May 16 at 5:30 p.m.
The city held a preconstruction meeting on April 18 for the maintenance shed project. Public Works expects the water service line to be bored by VIS Plumbing as early as next week. The department will also clear the shed and move out a diesel fuel barrel in preparation for concrete work. The city is still waiting on a sewer permit from the county. NES will assist with electrical wiring. With estimates for the project coming in nearly 30 percent higher than expected, the remaining portions of the initial project will be on hold until the council decides how to proceed.
“The meters are our priority,” said Ebner.
Public Works had installed 20 meters at the time of the meeting. Due to state statutes, the meter project includes extra steps related to grounding meters where necessary. The city also worked on documenting water setups within residences for up-to-date information and eliminating needless waiting for electricians working on the project.
City Attorney Joe O’Koren discussed a couple of legal items for the city. First was a catch by City Clerk Mary Miner related to the newly revamped Village Hall rental policy. After discussing potential rentals with residents, Miner noted that many indicated they wouldn’t serve alcohol, but guests bring it. While the city did include a Hold Harmless clause, the policy requires an additional insurance policy for renters if alcohol will be on the premises.
The city has modified the policy language to state renters “shall not allow” alcohol rather than using the term “serve.” If city staff finds evidence of alcohol on the premises and the renters do not have council approval and additional insurance, they will automatically forfeit the rental security deposit.
O’Koren also notified the council that the village needs to upload current ordinances into the county court system. A Fillmore County deputy recently alerted him to the issue when attempting to give a property owner a petty misdemeanor citation. O’Koren intends to upload the most pressing ordinances, including attacks by an animal, animals at large, and animals in the R1 and R2 districts. Likely, he will also upload planning/land use ordinances.
“It’s something we can use moving forward,” stated O’Koren. “It will be more cost-effective. We don’t want to be overactive on it, just on an as-needed basis.”
The next regularly scheduled council meeting is Tuesday, May 2, at 7 p.m. at the Village Hall. The public is encouraged to attend.