By Kim Brooks, Express Editor
Bud Johnson spoke with the Monticello City Council at their recent Aug. 5 meeting to discuss improvements and renovations at the Jaycee/Kleinow Park.
Bud and Georgia Johnson wish to see continued improvements to the park, including a new shelter, additional trees planted in that area, replacing the roof of the dugouts, additional bleachers, a larger restroom facility, more storage, more batting cages and continued maintenance. Bud projected the total cost of this project could be in the $100,000 price range. He asked that the city contribute towards the necessary improvements, asking the Council to look at budgeting $20,000 for FY 2015. The Johnsons would contribute financially as well, with donations and grants also coming in towards the project.
Bud also talked to the Park Board and Tami Bartram about the plans, and the Park Board is also behind this project.
The first item on the list is to tear down the current pavilion and start rebuilding, using the cement pad that is already in place.
“The city’s contribution helps kick off this project with fundraising and grants,” Bud told the Council. He said showing that the city is behind this project looks good when applying for grants.
Council member Dave Goedken asked who would be overseeing the project from start to finish. Bid said he is fully dedicated towards the idea, with Bartram backing him.
“This is all part of the bigger scheme of things,” Bid alluded to. He said with the community behind the idea, it helps move in the right direction for “other things I can visualize happening.” He said this ballpark is a visible spot in the community, with Riverside Gardens close by.
“It has a lot of potential down here,” he said. “I’m excited to take it on. I enjoy giving back to the community.”
Goedken added, “Sporting events are the best opportunity to show off this community.”
The Council thanked Bud for his continued support in the community and approved to budget the $20,000 for FY 2015.
At the last Council meeting on July 15, an item came before the Council concerning a house that was moved into town and set on Third Street, a project led by Steve Intlekofer.
Since then, City Administrator Doug Herman reported that the basement has been dug and walls poured at the site of the new location, Madalyn Court.
Herman informed the Council that Intlekofer could have the house removed, best case scenario, by Aug. 15. The Council voted to allow until Aug. 20 to have the house removed from Third Street or start initiating a penalty related to house moving permit deficiencies.
The city received three bids for four bid packages related to street repairs throughout the city: Eastern Iowa Excavating & Concrete LLC, Midwest Concrete, Inc. and Accent Construction.
The Council approved to award bid packages one and three to Eastern Iowa Excavating, award package two to Midwest Concrete and award package four to Accent Construction.
In other city business:
• The city is now the owner of the former Julin Printing building along S. Locust Street. The building has been inspected and is being prepared for the demolition notice to be published.
Herman asked the Council whether they thought the city might be interested in some of the building frames for the Public Works site. They were in favor of exploring building options.
• Roman Welter sent a letter to the Council concerning how the city handles sewer fees on water bills.
Welter said he looked into practices in Anamosa, Manchester and Dyersville, and found that these cities provide for separate meters. His main concern is watering outside during dry seasons and paying for usage that does not enter the sewer lines.
“When I built my house, I was not familiar with the sewer charges,” Welter said. He added that if he had known the regulations, he would have added a second water line when he built his home.
Herman also polled other cities (Cascade, Independence, Conrad and Camanche), and found that they all handle the situation differently.
Herman said he would keep looking into the situation, to see if the city could try and avoid people paying sewer fees on outside water usage.
• The Council approved the purchase of a new snow removal truck/plow, with four-wheel drive, for the airport. The airport’s five-year plan has provided for the replacement of current equipment.
The truck would be purchased from Hawkeye International Trucks in the amount of $150,093. Herman said the FAA would cover 90 percent of the total cost.