Corn Palace panel seeks $6 million to get ball rolling on upgradeThe first request from the Next Generation Corn Palace Committee this year was for $35 million.
By: Tom Lawrence, The Daily Republic
The first request from the Next Generation Corn Palace Committee this year was for $35 million.
That was soundly rejected by the community and the City Council.
In May, a plan calling for up to $12 million in upgrades for the facility was discussed. No final action was taken.
Monday night, committee chairman Doug Dailey asked the council for more than $6 million to pay for improvements to the Corn Palace while the bigger plan to relocate City Hall and expand the Corn Palace is being finalized.
After a long discussion, the council asked Dailey to bring the idea back for further talks during the August budget hearings.
He asked for $6,055,000 to make site improvements, including widening the sidewalk and narrowing North Main Street, remodeling the interior and exterior of the city-owned building, refurbishing the large dome, removing the arena ceiling tiles to expose the original beams, adding new lighting, paint and sprinklers, improving handicapped seating and upgrading the building’s temperature controls. Those projects would cost $4,266,000.
The committee also wants to spend $800,000 for construction plans and $225,000 on exhibits, furniture and equipment.
An additional $764,000 would be set aside for the second phase of the expansion and remodel, which would include a $500,000 contingency fund.
“We believe it’s important to move forward with this,” Dailey said.
Dailey said he would like to see work start this fall. A proposed road widening project between the Day Camp and the Sportsman’s Club on Indian Village Road sparked a discussion among the council’s Public Works Committee, city staff and some citizens.
At the center of it was trees that will be taken from along the lakeshore.
Public Works Deputy Director Terry Johnson said trees that would be removed are in dire condition now.
“Some of the trees might be dead, partially dead or close to (the end of) their life cycle,” he said.
The city will plant large trees as replacements, Johnson said.
However, Public Works Director Tim McGannon said he has personally planted 1,000 trees on his property in the past six years and has noticed that smaller trees take better to the transfer and grow faster.
Tammy Wheeler asked several questions, including on curb and gutter, which she was told will not be added, and about adding jetties that will reach into the lake, which has been planned.
Wheeler said more public discussion is needed and said some fishermen oppose the jetties. City staff said the jetties are viewed as creating fish habitat and are favored by many fishermen.
McGannon said former lake committees and other groups have sunk Christmas trees and tires and anchors into the lake to create fish habitat. Parks, Forestry and Recreation Director Dusty Rodiek said the city is working with the state Game, Fish and Parks Department to create additional fish habitat.
Councilman Mel Olson said the council was just taking the first steps on this. No decisions were being made, he said.
“There has to be a first meeting for every project,” he said.
Mike Kuchera urged the city to go slow in removing trees, which will take decades to fully replace.
“I do know one thing: It takes a long time to grow a tree,” Kuchera said.
In other business, the council:
• Heard Mayor Ken Tracy recommend the appointments of seven department heads: Finance Officer Marilyn Wilson, Chief of Public Safety Lyndon Overweg, Public Works Director Tim McGannon, Human Resources Director Billie Kelly, Parks & Recreation Director Dusty Rodiek, Golf & Cemetery Director Kevin Thurman and Corn Palace Director Mark Schilling. The council approved the appointments and Tracy swore six of the seven into office. Wilson was absent.
• Approved the choices Tracy made for city committees. Both councilmen and private citizens were named.
• Tabled a planned discussion on runoff elections after 10 p.m. in the interest of time.
• Heard reports from the Traffic Commission and Public Works and Sidewalk committees.
The Public Works Committee took a bus tour of the city to review current and future sidewalk projects.
Public Works Deputy Director Terry Johnson said most of the feedback from the public has been positive.
In one case, an 87-year-old man asked to have sidewalk installed by his home and the city hooked him up with a contractor. The sidewalk has been placed at the home near the intersection of 10th Avenue and Langdon Street.
“He said, ‘I don’t have much money but I want to make a difference,’ ” Johnson said. “And he said he was tired of seeing people walk in the streets.”
The council was told several projects will be completed by the end of the 2013 construction season as the city connects areas with sidewalks and gradually provides them across the city.
The Traffic Commission approved four temporary road closures for upcoming events and a loading zone sign change for the Mitchell Area Community Theatre.
• Set a July 31 date to receive and consider bids for the North Ohlman Street storm sewer extension, city project 2012-39.
• Awarded bids on a Mitchell Regional Airport snow removal equipment building, subject to approval from the South Dakota Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration.
Mueller Lumber, of Mitchell, submitted the low bid of $402,500 and was given the contract.
Almost all the money — 98 percent — will come from state and federal grants, McGannon said.
• Held a hearing and approved the application to transfer a retail (on-sale) liquor license to include Sunday sales from Daisy Properties LLC, 1610 S. Burr St., to Ty’s Casino, at the same address.
• Held a hearing on and approved the proposed resolution of necessity for construction of base course, bituminous paving, curb and gutter, miscellaneous expenses, engineering services and project interest in the 2500 block of South Mentzer.
Resolution 2995 will provide for a 300-foot extension of the street in front of Tractor Supply at the request of its owner.
The council toured the area during its bus ride. The work will be done by the city and private contractors and the cost assessed to Tractor Supply and Menards, the two neighboring properties.
• Adopted Resolution 3009, the purchase of a Public Works Department quad cab pickup from Billion Chrysler Jeep Dodge, of Sioux Falls, off a state bid.
Almost all the vehicles parked at City Hall were totaled by the May hailstorm, McGannon said. The vehicle is priced at $32,000 but the city will be able to buy it for $22,000.
• Adopted Resolution 3010, declaring seven hazardous/nuisance sidewalks.
• Adopted Resolution 3011, the plat of lots A-2 and A-3, a subdivision of previously platted Green’s Outlots 1, 2 and 3 to Mitchell, in the northwest quarter of Section 15, T 103 N, R 50 W of the fifth Prime Meridian in the city of Mitchell.
• Adopted Resolution 3012, the plat of NCBC Tract 1 in the southeast quarter of the southwest quarter of Section 13, T 104 N, R 61 W of the fifth Prime Meridian in Davison County.
• Adopted Resolution 3013, the plat of Tract 1-B of Starlite Estates, in the northeast quarter of the northwest quarter of Section 34, T 103 N, R 60 W of the fifth Prime Meridian in Davison County.
• Approved an automatic supplement to the General Fund, Finance, in the amount of $9,200 for fabricator’s sales tax rebate from use tax collections.
• Approved an automatic supplement to the Enterprise Fund, Golf, in the amount of $3,417 for a refund on an equipment purchase.
• Approved the application of the Palace City Lions Club of Mitchell for a Special Event Malt Beverage and Wine License at Hitchcock Park and Hitchcock’s big shelter area on Aug. 25 for the Tour De Corn.
• Approved the application of the Palace City Lions Club of Mitchell for a Special Event Liquor License at the Corn Palace and City Hall on Sept. 28-29 for the CBR Wilbur Ellis Corn Palace Challenge Bull Ride.
• Declared as surplus for disposal a City Hall shredder.
• Approved raffle requests from Trinity Lutheran Church, of Mitchell, with the drawing to be held Oct. 7; and the Mitchell Lions Club, with the drawing to be held Oct. 6.
• Sat as the Board of Adjustment to:
Set an Aug. 6 date for a hearing on the application of Kayla Gruenstein for a Conditional Use Permit to operate a child care center in her home at 912 E. Second Ave.More from around the web