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City Council to discuss snow removal ordinance changes

The Mitchell City Council will consider an ordinance at its meeting tonight to clarify the city's sidewalk snow and ice removal law. The meeting starts at 6 p.m. at Mitchell City Hall Council Chambers at 612 N. Main St. In the item agenda request...

Mitchell City Hall. (Republic file photo)
Mitchell City Hall. (Republic file photo)

The Mitchell City Council will consider an ordinance at its meeting tonight to clarify the city's sidewalk snow and ice removal law.

The meeting starts at 6 p.m. at Mitchell City Hall Council Chambers at 612 N. Main St. In the item agenda request from City Attorney Justin Johnson, the ordinance will repeal and replace the existing ordinance, but will have a lot of carryover from the existing ordinances. The ordinance will receive a first reading at tonight's meeting.

"In summary, there will be a general duty on all owners and occupants of a given property to clear adjacent sidewalks of snow and ice," the item reads. "Adjacent sidewalks will include sidewalks in the right-of-way located between the property line and the nearest roadway and also any sidewalks located on private property in a sidewalk easement."

The ordinance would also allow the council to have the ability to create special removal areas. Those are defined as areas where the property owner would normally be responsible for removal of snow and ice but the council directs the city to assume responsibility for removal duties. The areas that fall under that designation, according to the ordinance, would be for maintaining aesthetics, lengthening the useful life of sidewalks and certain priority routes for pedestrian travel. City workers will continue to clear snow on designated bike paths, around city parks, municipal buildings, paths around Lake Mitchell and the Lakeview Golf Course and designated routes on Burr Street, North Ohlman Street and West 23rd Avenue.

The ordinance also retains the ability for the city to clear snow and ice at properties where the owner or occupant has not removed snow and charge the costs back to the owner or occupant. Occupants will continue to have 48 hours after a snowfall or ice formation event to remove snow or ice from the sidewalks.

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The council will also meet as the city finance committee at 6 p.m.

Jitters building bid comes in

The city is recommending the tear down of the Jitters building downtown, after opening bids for the project last week. Two contractors applied for the job and the city is recommending awarding the project work to VanderPol Dragline, of Mitchell, at the overall estimated cost of $73,798.

The work would include constructing a safety fence and barriers to keep the public from the site during the demolition process. Main Street is expected to be closed for a short period to take the building down, and for the city to disable water and sewer service to the building.

The city has budgeted $100,000 for the Jitters project this year, leaving $26,202 in this year's budget for additional work. The demolition would start after the Dakota Wesleyan University homecoming parade on Oct. 13, with the completion projected for the end of 2018.

Consent agenda

• Approve past meeting minutes, committee minutes and department reports.

• Consider the following: raffle permits for the Mitchell Friends of NRA (drawing Sept. 8), the L.B. Williams PTO (drawing Sept. 22), and Trinity Lutheran Church (drawing Oct. 7).

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• Consider appointing Ann Temple to the library board for a term through July 2021 and Dennis Marek to the Parks and Recreation Board through July 2019.

• Set the date of Sept. 4 for the following hearings: the application of Blarney's Sports Bar and Grill for a special event liquor license located at the Highland Mall on Nov. 30 for the Holiday Spirits; the application of Corn Palace Shrine Club for a special event liquor license located at the Masonic Lodge on Oct. 6 for a wedding; the application of Corn Palace Shrine Club for a special event liquor license located at the Masonic Lodge on Sept. 8 for the NRA Banquet; the application of V.V. Inc., dba Outback Casino, 508 E. Havens Ave., Ste. 2, for a new retail (on-off sale) malt beverage license (this license will not be eligible for video lottery); the application to transfer retail (on-sale) liquor license RL-19079 from V.V. Inc., dba Outback Casino, 508 E. Havens Ave., to V.V. Inc., dba Sudz, 508 and 510 E. Havens Ave.; the application to transfer retail (on-sale) wine license RW-23600 from MG Oil Company dba Village Bowl, 1500 N. Duff Ste. A, to V.V. Inc., dba Outback Casino, 508 E. Havens Ave., Ste. 2.

• Set 1:30 p.m. Sept. 6 as the date or time for the East Havens water loop city project (#2018-35), while setting 1:30 p.m. Sept. 20 for the re-bid of the water tower coating project (#2018-1R). Both will be held at Mitchell City Hall.

• Declare surplus property, approve gas and fuel quotations, pay estimates, approve bills, payroll, salary adjustments and new employee hires. (The city will hold a surplus auction at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 18 at the city storage building at 5951 Airport Road.)

Other business

• Pledge of Allegiance, invocation from Grace Reformed Church, roll call and approval of the consent agenda.

• Hear citizens input.

• Hear finance and traffic committee reports.

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• Meeting as the board of adjustment, set Sept. 4 as the date for the following hearings: Dan Fechner (applicant) and Aaron, Jessica and Shirley Baas have requested the city planning commission and the board of adjustment to consider the application of a conditional use permit, Assembly Hall, in Perry Township and 5600/5700 Block of N. Ohlman St., zoned as an urban development district; and Carol Ragle has requested the city planning commission and the board of adjustment to consider the application of home occupation (homeopathic treatments) at 815 McCabe St., zoned (R2) single-family residential district.

• Hold a special assessment hearing and consider action to approve a proposed resolution of necessity to construct the alley in the 400 block of N. Main. St. (between Fourth and Fifth avenues on the west side of Main Street). The city will pay for half of the cost of the alley, while the rest will be paid by special assessment, if approved. The estimated assessment is $55,988.33. A separate resolution declaring the necessity for the construction of a base course, concrete paving and engineering fees will also be considered.

• Consider action on resolution #R2018-46, a plat of Lot 9, Block 4A of Westwood First Addition, a subdivision of a portion of Tract A-2 and Block 4 of Westwood First Addition in the northwest quarter of Section 16, Mitchell Township, city of Mitchell.

• Hold a discussion on plans for a Davison County-wide comprehensive plan for 2019.

• Consider approving a professional services agreement for Phase I of the East Central Drainage Basin project with SPN and Associates, of Mitchell, in the amount of $310,000. The contract would include studying the project, designs, bidding, negotiating and work through the post-construction phase.

• Consider action to approve future water needs study agreement for an estimated cost of $50,458 with Infrastructure Design Group, Inc. The work is slated to be completed by Oct. 31, if approved.

Traxler is the assistant editor and sports editor for the Mitchell Republic. He's worked for the newspaper since 2014 and has covered a wide variety of topics. He can be reached at mtraxler@mitchellrepublic.com.
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