Snow removal topic at city council meeting

GLENWOOD CITY — The city council and the City’s Public Works Director Doug Doornink discussed snow removal from private parking lots during Monday night meeting of the council.

Presently the city picks up snow that has been removed from private parking lots and drives that has been pushed into the city street, but the city does not go onto private property and remove snow. At question was a recent snow fall where the city crew had clean the street, curb to curb and then a property owner pushed snow onto the street. Doornink told the council that after some discussion, the city removed the snow.

Also at question is snow from a private lot that has been piled onto the city boulevard and is just sitting there. A city council member has concerns about that noting that when it melts the water will run into the street and ice up at the corner of First and Maple Streets. Council member Steve Lee after much discussion on the entire program noted that he felt that the city should “continue cleaning it up.” But member Crystal Booth said, “I feel different on that.” In the end the city will continue as it has been.

Later in the meeting City resident Jeff Jordheim questioned the council about using a pickup to plow the snow off the sidewalks. He noted that someone plows along West Oak Street with a pickup and that the sidewalks and pavers are not made to support the weight of a truck. The council asked Doornink to speak to the person and have him find another way to clean the sidewalk.

New Loader

Doornink informed the council that the new front-end loader has arrived and that they are making additions to it to accommodate the snow removal equipment. Later in the meeting the council approved borrowing $130,000 from the Hiawatha National Bank at a 3.7 percent to pay for the new John Deere 544K. The city received $25,000 for the old loader.

Mayor’s Report

Mayor John Larson addressed the council with a couple of budget items in the final report of the past year. He noted that the firm Life Quest that does the billing for the ambulance service has charged the city 18 percent for their collection efforts and Larson indicated that they should only be getting eight percent. “We need to contact them and ask questions,” Larson said.

He also presented the council with a report from the city auditors about the closing out of the TID number two. That is the area north of the school that has the fire station and several business, homes and apartment buildings. The area has more than paid back in the city’s investment to construct that sub-division and according to law excess moneys must be paid back. The city has some $636,043.32 in a bank account from that area and the auditor presented that needs to be distributed including: $107,057 to St. Croix County; $283,018 to the Glenwood City Schools; $30,675 to the Indianhead Technical College and $215,291 to the City. The mayor added that with closing out that district, it will add some two million dollars to the general tax roll.