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Council to decide about snowblower and building permit

With the end of the year just a few weeks away, the Hancock City Council held the first of two December meetings to wrap-up decisions for the year. The meeting on Dec. 10 was relatively short with some of those decisions being table until the special meeting on Dec. 27.

The first of those was the purchase of a snow blower for the tractor. Police Chief Matt Flogstad brought it up during his report noting that being able to blow the snow away instead of constantly pushing it back would be more practical. The tractor/ blower would be used to clear snow in alleys, around public buildings and school parking lot.

Flogstad also told the council members that the yellow city truck has a fuel leak which may be the fuel pump. There is also a problem with the transmission. Some of these repairs could be very costly. Flogstad also stated that there has been some illegal dumping of garbage at the former sewer plant site and he recommended doing something about this in the spring. The compost pile is for trees and yard waste not boxes and furniture. A few items were found in the garbage with names on them.

Council members instructed Flogstad to get bids on the snowblower and present them at the Dec. 27 special meeting.

A building permit was approved for a home to be moved in on a lot in East View addition. However, the council members tabled a building permit application for a storage building proposed for a site across the road from Buddies. It was mentioned that a lot of city funds were put into the road and bringing water and sewer to that area and it would be better to see homes or businesses put there rather than a storage building that would not use the utilities. It was hoped that the property owner could come to the Dec. 27 meeting to talk with council about the plans.

Other business

* The city council was informed that the Commercial Club will purchase one new Christmas decoration for the light poles and the fire department will be approached about another. Council members voted to purchase one so there will be three new ones purchased this year. The city is short five and will need to replace a few in the coming years. It is hoped to continue to replace these on a regular basis to stay on top of it.

* City Clerk Andrea Swenson told the council members to start thinking about how they want to fill the council seat that will be vacated when Bruce Malo assumes the job of mayor. She also asked council to consider allowing her to close the city office to the public on Wednesdays. She would still be there to do her work which she explained, would be much easier without constant interruptions. The council members suggested shortening the daily hours instead, such as closing an hour earlier or opening later, so she could get more work done during those hours. Nothing was decided at the meetings.

* Swenson also explain-ed that there is a program she is looking into called GreenThumb through which retired city residents could possibly work up to 20 hours a week and be paid through this government program.

* There was some discussion about residents who are pushing snow across city streets to be piled on other lots. In some cases, this piled snow causes large drifts. It was noted that there is an ordinance against pushing snow across public streets.

* The temperature in the water plant has been lowered to below the temperature of the water coming in from the tower. It was felt that it is not necessary to heat the water being treated.