City council discusses upcoming projects
Streets, slides, and Gettysburg’s Civil War heritage were all part of the April 1 City Council meeting.
The discussion opened by addressing concerns about issues discussed at meetings that are not clarified in the minutes. Council member Dawn Nagel suggested that additional data be recorded with more facts and procedural information. Finance Officer Shar Eliason explained that legally she is only required to list motions in the city minutes, and pointed out that other local boards limit their information primarily to that. Mayor Bill Wuttke reminded the group that the meetings are open to the public and people are welcome to attend or stop in the Finance Office to listen to the recording of the meetings. That information will be added to the minutes to encourage the public to listen to the meetings if interested.
Letters were read to the council from Bert Van Essen and Bernie Webb asking for support from the city for the local Civil War Association. Van Essen is working to revive the organization. It was reported they would like to provide a canon ball with powder bag for display at the museum, and it is hoped to have re-enactors in uniform and possibly a canon entered in local parades to showcase that Gettysburg was part of “where the battle wasn’t.” No re-enactments are planned for the near future. Van Essen requested $500 from the city for the Civil War Association, and the council agreed to donate $500 a year as long as the association stays active.
Maintenance Supervisor Russell Anderson reported that the city will be doing asphalt work on over 30 blocks of streets this year, and Jensen Rock and Sand agreed to use the same bid quoted from last year to complete the project. He described the bid as “a good deal” which should help keep down the project expenses. The council also discussed a Department of Transportation federal TAP (Transportation Alternatives Program) grant which Anderson will check into.
He also received information on the South Dakota underground tank removal program, and urged the council to let the city know if anyone has underground fuel tanks that need to be removed.
Because of vandalism to the keypad entry system at the city auditorium, Council member Josh Bausch recommended adding an outdoor security camera to the building. It was suggested that cameras be added to the swimming pool and outside of the bathhouse at the city park.
Lots of plans for the swimming pool were discussed by the council. A slide will be added to the “baby” pool with donations of $5,000 each from Gettysburg In Action (GIA) and the Avera medical center. Julie Schaunaman and Tricia Dutenhoeffer were hired as co-managers, and interviews for lifeguards will be conducted by the managers and swimming pool committee. Group passes, rather than “family” passes, may be purchased for up to five people during the summer swimming season. Amounts were also set for individual passes, daily, senior, and aerobics rates, and swimming lessons.
During the roundtable discussion, Mayor Wuttke talked about some of the uses for Triple B funds, which currently go to the local Economic Development Corporation. Council member Nagel asked that discussion regarding the Triple B funding be done when the executive director of the EDC was present. Eliason said she had an inquiry from a citizen about the Triple B money and how the ordinance was written originally to pay off the spec building.
The “battle” Gettysburg sign was also mentioned, and it was suggested by Nagel that since other community organizations had initiated the sign project, it was not the city’s place to take it over.
Bausch said he was asked by the sheriff if the city still had plans to put in crosswalks by the school, but further discussion will be held depending on the possibility of the new school project.
Other agenda items reviewed by the council included:
• a monthly report from Gayle Kludt, executive director of the Gettysburg-Whitlock Bay Economic Development Corporation.
• a report from Officer Nick Bratland of the Gettysburg Police Department, who said there were three reports of vandalism in the community, and the police department has moved into the new office by the hospital. The council urged the police department to look into portable radar units to be placed along streets to show drivers their speed.
• suggestions were made on how to best keep people off the street near the helo pad when the emergency transfer helicopter comes to the medical center.
• the EMT testing will take place in Rapid City on May 4. Four people are taking the test.
• a radio tower located by the city rubble site is available, and a letter of intent will be sent saying the city is interested in the property.
• regular water quality reports will be sent out in May or June.
• the Gettysburg Fire Department year end financials were presented to the council.
The minutes for the city council meeting are published on page 12 of this edition of the News. The meetings are recorded and those interested may listen to them at the City Finance Office.