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Palace lighting upgrades top council agenda

In this file photo from 2016, the Corn Palace murals are difficult to see due to different lighting surrounding each mural. (Republic file photo)

The city of Mitchell could soon turn down the lights at the Corn Palace.

An agreement set for authorization by the Mitchell City Council at Monday night's meeting would make the murals alongside the Palace easier to see at night. The $2,800 proposed contract for light dimmers comes approximately 16 months after Mayor Jerry Toomey said the murals appear "invisible" at night.

The council meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. Monday night at City Hall.

While the lighting has been improved for the large murals on the west side of the tourist attraction, the south side murals still can be challenging to see at night. The issues arose after a $4.7 million renovation of the Corn Palace, which included the installation of brighter lights around the murals and the removal of the light fixtures hanging above the murals.

But the agreement with Brandon-based Professional Design Engineers could be the solution.

"This system will allow us to dim the lights surrounding the murals as well as enhance the brightness of the domes/turrets on top of the Corn Palace," states the staff report filed with the agenda item.

Last July, new lighting was added atop the Mitchell Area Chamber of Commerce building across the street from the Corn Palace, which aim lighting at the three domes on the Palace and the two murals on the west side of the structure.

The Corn Palace will also be discussed in another agenda item for the eight-person board, with a total of $55,917 for a light and winch project within the building.

According to the report, the facility will have control panels on the stage floor to raise winches and LED lights to lower the time spent on the Corn Palace catwalks.

"These monies will allow us to limit our access time to the Corn Palace Catwalk as our main times in the ceiling are for accessing light bulbs and rigging points during concerts," states the report."

Consent agenda

The council will consider approving the following items of the consent agenda:

• Minutes from the July 3 and July 10 City Council June 26 and July 3 Planning Commission meetings, as well as various department reports.

• The City Council committee list. A notable change is the proposed addition of Councilman Marty Barington as City Council liaison to the Lake Mitchell Advisory Committee. Barington would replace former Councilwoman Bev Robinson, who declined to run for re-election this year.

• Set 1:30 p.m. on July 27 as the date to open bids for on the Mitchell Recreation Center reroofing project.

• A raffle permit request from the Mitchell Area Charitable Foundation, with the drawing to be held in mid-September.

• Set 11:30 a.m. on July 24 as the date for a special City Council meeting.

• Set July 24 as the date for a hearing on the application of the Exchange Club of Mitchell for a special event malt beverage license at Cadwell Park from Aug. 2 to Aug. 13.

• Set Aug. 7 as the date to consider two special event liquor license requests.

• Change order No. 1 to a curb and gutter project. The city will no longer be doing work at Fifth Avenue and the Rowley Street alley. In its place, the city is fixing concrete at the City Hall parking lot. The contract will see a $24,961.70 change to schedule A of the project and a $23,508.42 reduction to schedule B.

• Change order No. 2 to South Duff Street reconstruction. The change order would increase the cost by $7,552.

• Pay estimates, gas and fuel quotes, bills, payroll, salary adjustments, new employee hires and authorize payment of recurring and other expenses in advance as approved by the finance officer.

Agenda items

The council will consider the following agenda items:

• Meet as the Traffic Committee for several items. Included in the Traffic Committee agenda is a request to close a portion of the CIty Hall parking lot and the adjacent 100 block of East Seventh Avenue on Aug. 19 from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. for the Tour de Corn. The committee will also consider Corn Palace Festival Committee requests for street closures during the Corn Palace Festival, the Mitchell Convention & Visitors Bureau to close a portion of Main Street on Aug. 3 and 4 for a "Sturgis Biker event," a request for street closures on North Main Street and First Avenue on Sept. 9 for the veterans park dedication ceremony, a no parking request on Pheasant Street for the first spot on the east side of the road and a request for a restricted parking and accessible parking.

• Meet as the Public Properties Committee to discuss a street light request for Cottonwood Circle.

• Call the City Council meeting to order, conduct the Pledge of Allegiance, hear an invocation from First United Methodist Church and conduct roll call.

• Enter a closed-door executive session to discuss proposed or pending litigation or contractual matters. The council will then reconvene in open session.

• Administer the oath of office to Public Works Director Tim McGannon for one year or until the position is filled.

• Call for citizen input and hear committee reports.

• Hold a hearing on the application of the Corn Palace Festival for a special malt beverage license on Sixth Avenue for evenings on Aug. 23 through Aug. 26 for concerts at the Corn Palace Freedom Stage.

• Meet as the board adjustment to set Aug. 7 as the date for a hearing on regarding the expansion of the Performance Pet Products facility. The owners intends to expand by 70,000 square feet.

• Action to re-allocate funds for winches and lighting in the Corn Palace.

• Action on a bid for snow removal equipment and authorize the mayor to sign grant documents as required.

• Action on engineering design services for Mattie Street utility and street improvements.

• Action on an clinical affiliation agreement to allow the Mitchell Department of Public Safety to be the site for a "School of EMS."

• Action on a possible agreement with Helms & Associates for engineering administration for snow removal equipment.

• Action on a plan for Corn Palace light dimmers.

• Action to consider accepting $3,000 in grant funds for West Nile virus prevention.

• Two separate actions to approve plats in the Woodland Heights First Addition.

• Action on a resolution to vacate the right-of-way on property owned by Kevin H. Hagen, of Mitchell Manufacturing.

• Hear the first reading on an ordinance to change the zoning classification of property in the County Addition from R2 single family residential district to a TWC transportation, warehousing and commercial district.

• Action to refinance sales tax financing bonds issued in 2009 for the B-Y Water project. The proposed refinancing would result in a net savings of $100,228 according to the staff report.

• Hold the first reading on an ordinance updating the storm drainage chapter of Mitchell City Code. According to the staff report, "The overall goal is to allow the City greater flexibility in ensuring that stormwater is being drained properly."