Lake Sarah Sewer improvements coming this summer

The Greenfield City Council April 16 entertained a contract amendment from its wastewater treatment contractor, Veolia, that would signal the start of a Lake Sarah Septic Tank Abandonment Project. 

The project, which includes pumping, safe tank abandonment, inlet connections and grading improvements is expected to reduce inflow and infiltration, pose fewer operational challenges to the treatment plant and reduce backups for residents on the Lake Sarah Sewer System while addressing a requirement in the city’s Comprehensive Land Use Plan.

Veolia Project Manager Kelly Daleiden explained the scope of the work, and said that communication with the 50-plus residents who will be affected would be a key element of the project. An informational open house is planned for the evening of Thursday, May 23.

It is expected that the majority of project costs will be covered by the Lake Sarah Sewer Fund, currently with a balance of approximately $150,000. This fund is supported by the users on the system and was originated to cover maintenance and improvements as needed. Some properties may require additional work due to the location of their tanks or other impeding factors, and owners may be assessed the difference. Property owners will be advised in advance of work, and viable options in some situations.

The council approved the amendment unanimously.

 

PUBLIC WORKS

The council was asked to approve the hire of Mark Eberle for a public works positions. Both Greenfield City Administrator Kathryne McCullum and Public Works Supervisor Jeremy Ketcher interviewed candidates for the position and recommended Eberle. Councilor Tom Cook, who sits on the city’s Employee Review Committee, said that Eberle’s response to a fictitious problem was exceptional, and that he used resources including the city’s web site and ordinance in preparing is proposed response.

McCullum offered that Eberle has experience in excavating, heavy machinery operation and maintenance and roadwork and is an US Air Force Reservist.

The council approved the hire 5-0.

 

IT HIRE

In April, the council asked staff to solicit quotes from informational technology support companies. Administrator McCullum provided the council with copies of proposals by three area businesses as well as a cost comparison graph she prepared.

Earlier in the meeting, Joe Lepore, who owns Rapid Software Solutions, Inc. of Greenfield, approached the council during the public comment portion and asked that he be allowed to address the way his costs and services were represented on the summary/outline prepared by staff. Mayor Brad Johnson recused himself from the discussion, and action, since he had a working relationship with one of the firms outside of city business. The four remaining councilors agreed not to entertain additional information from Lepore at this meeting, citing that it may provide an advantage not available to the other candidates. The item (an action item to hire) was on the agenda for the evening and two of the three interested parties were in attendance. Lepore withdrew his proposal from consideration at that point.

After introducing the item, McCullum recommended to the council that it hire LogicNet LL of Rockford, for which she credited with having an established work history with city and experience with tech support for municipalities. LogicNet did not have representation at this meeting.

After some discussion, council members agreed that it was difficult to make a choice based on the proposals and comparison analysis prepared by staff alone, and that having the opportunity to ask vendors questions directly, including Lepore if interested, would be beneficial.  A special meeting scheduled for April 30 will include this opportunity, and may result in a hire.

 

GREENFIELD CENTRAL PARK

Park news just keeps coming despite the weather.

Greenfield Park Commission Chair Victoria Dukes asked the council to approve funds to create a memorial site in Greenfield Central Park. The park is located on land across from the old city hall on Town Hall Dr. and County Rd. 50. It is the city’s first official park, with over 20 acres and phase one of development under way. The proposed memorial consists of a round patio area with pavers, a flagpole and benches. Also included in future planning at this site are granite monument pillars/stones that could be covered with name plaques memorializing individuals.

Much of the work on the memorial site is scheduled for May 5 to coincide with the volunteer effort a Thousand Hearts Crow River Serve Day. Dukes recognized that weather may prohibit the project from being completed on that day, but that it would be done as soon there after as possible and with volunteer help.

The full council supported the purchase of the materials needed for the memorial at $1,740.

Rebecca Mavencamp, Rockford Area Historical Society Director, approached the council regarding a proposed event for the park.

Both cities, Rockford and Greenfield, will be participating in a community garden program with banks of sectioned lots available to rent on municipal property. She proposed, on behalf of the Greenfield-Rockford Organization of Environmentally Responsible Stewards (GROERS) that Greenfield Central Park be the site of a season end event celebrating the program. The council was supportive of the idea. Area residents interested in renting, or finding out more about the community garden program, should contact groersgardens@gmail.com

The next regular meeting of the Greenfield City Council is Tuesday, May 7, at 7 p.m. at 6390 Town Hall Dr.

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