The Rockford City Council, at its May 25 meeting, made a big change in professional staff.
For about 15 years, the city has relied upon Stantec (formerly known as Boonestro) for engineering services. With a number of city projects on board for 2013 and beyond, concerns over how much engineering costs were biting into the bottom line were first raised by Councilor Rick Martinson, and supported by Mayor Renee Hafften. The full council agreed to go out for proposals. A team of staff and council reviewed proposals and conducted interviews. It’s consensus was to offer Wenck Associates, of Maple Plain, the position of city engineer and brought this recommendation to council.
After some discussion, the council voted unanimously to hire Wenck.
Wenck engineering associate Vince VanderTop was on hand to explain how the transition would occur, with some information on projects at the starting gate needed from Stantec, which he suspected would be forth coming.
The city is at the first leg of an multi-phase/year overall street and sewer improvement project, and is considering building an event center in the Riverside Park area.
Due to numerous complaints made to the city regarding turkeys and roosters residing on city properties, and the noise associated with their residency, the council approved an ordinance that clearly outlines what animals are considered domesticated and allowed on residential properties. Communication from the city will go out to all affected, with the date of July 8 noted for compliance.
FIRE DEPARTMENT REPORT
Rockford Fire Department Chief Ben Sanderson reported that there had been 107 calls to date, slow he suggested for this point in the year but cautioned that warm weather could alter that trend.
He added that he and Department Caption Ron Harkins had completed inspection training. The council had earlier discussed the need for building inspections, and the department is now prepared to oblige at council direction.
The next regular meeting of the Rockford City Council is June 11, at 7 p.m., at the Rockford City Hall, 6031 Main St.