3 City ordinances considered favorable
Holyoke City Council had first readings of three ordinances at the Oct. 3 meeting. Each was passed unanimously and will be presented for final passage at the next meeting, Tuesday, Oct. 17.
The first, Ordinance No. 2-2017, is for the City to adopt the supplemental agreement for firm power interchange service, schedule J of the electrical resources pooling agreement with the Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska.
Both Ordinance 3-2017 and 4-2017 are to authorize the sale of real property. The City owns a tract of land located in the SW 1/4 of Section 8, T7N, R44W of the 6th P.M. The first ordinance is for the sale of 325 E. Bignel St. to Grassland Properties LLC. The second is for 344 E. Akron St. to Phillip E. Wirges and Carolyn L. Wirges. It was authorized in Ordinance No. 2-1968.
Phillips County Economic Development annual update given
Julia Biesemeier, executive director for Phillips County Economic Development, attended Tuesday’s meeting to provide the annual update and budget presentation to the council.
Daniels Fund grants that have been running for about two years are wrapping up this year. In that time, PCED was able to put about $55,000 into youth and young adult programs. One of the projects was an eighth-grade career fair attended by over 400 area students. There was a specific focus on rural Colorado jobs that students could return to.
PCED is also working with the Holyoke Community Child Care Initiative. They are looking to have a feasibility study completed, which will cost $4,000. Holyoke Community Child Care Initiative has funds set aside to pay for half, and PCED is seeking a DOLA grant to cover the remainder. Biesemeier asked that the City be a pass-through agent for the grant, and council members voted to do so.
For the 2018 budget, PCED is asking for the same as previous years: $10,900. Biesemeier also reported that they are looking for a new executive director, as she will be leaving.
Rec department adds activities
Recreation director Victoria Timm was pleased to report that at the conclusion of the flag football season, she received lots of positive feedback. Women’s volleyball is also underway and will continue each Monday until Oct. 23.
Looking ahead, a Ballyneal cooking class is set for Nov. 15-16. Timm is also working to organize a Christmas plate decorating event in collaboration with Prairie Winds Art Center. Working with the Dragon Booster Club, a 3-on-3 tournament is scheduled for Jan. 15, 2018, and a Nuggets Skills Challenge is in the works for sometime in January.
Timm also noted that removing grass from the infield at the little baseball field will move forward as soon as weather allows.
City Superintendent Mark Brown reported that the bell and time capsule have been reinstalled at the mini park and suggested a plaque be put up to explain the significance of the bell. He also noted four power outages since the last meeting: two Sept. 23, one Sept. 25 and one Sept. 26. Water and sewer has been working on backflows and broken water meters. The street crew is working on the West Kunkel Street project and mowing City properties.
Police Chief Doug Bergstrom reported that Holyoke Police Department handled or generated 183 calls for service from Sept 14-27, including code enforcement. HPD wrote seven citations and three reports and gave out 22 warnings. Code enforcement had four animal complaints, two dogs at large and eight ordinance violations.
City Attorney Al Wall suggested that a committee meet to discuss codification of the Holyoke Municipal Code. He also anticipates receiving a report about marijuana tax issues.
In other business at the Oct. 3 meeting, city council:
—Purchased a power screed board from Wagner Rents in Windsor for $15,596.
—Received a codification update from City Clerk/Treasurer Kathy Olofson. In answer to the council’s question, Municode said that it is helpful for the City to point out obsolete items in the Holyoke Municipal Code, but part of their service is to take those things out and clean it up.
—Heard from volunteer firefighters Josh Young and Lance Murray that additional contractors have been contacted for estimates on the new fire hall. Council member Gene Bittner pointed out that harvest traffic may be a concern at the proposed site.
—Designated Olofson as the appointee on the memorandum of understanding for control of confidential data (sales tax information) from the Colorado Department of Revenue.
—Agreed to pay half of the flu shot fee for City officials. Part-time employees, spouses and children will pay the full fee.
—Authorized Mayor Orville Tonsing to sign a resolution urging the General Assembly to approve legislation during its 2018 session to reauthorize the Colorado lottery division until 2039.
—Received copies of the first draft of the 2018 budget. Olofson asked that committees and department heads submit their budget requests, and a work session is planned immediately following the Nov. 7 meeting.
—Held a 25-minute executive session for a conference with the City attorney to receive legal advice.