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Traffic route through town is taking a beating

The City of Kenmare could be waiting a long time for Ward County to fix their road passing through town. The county still has more repairs than they can handle, because of flooding last year.

4/11/12 (Wed)

By Terry Froseth

The City of Kenmare could be waiting a long time for Ward County to fix their road passing through town. The county still has more repairs than they can handle, because of flooding last year.

Meanwhile, Ward County Road 2 (Sixth Street), a main thoroughfare passing through Kenmare from U.S. Highway 52 on the east to Ward County 1 on the west, is taking a continuous beating from heavy oilfield truck traffic.

At the city council meeting Monday, Mayor Roger Ness said, "People have knocked their oil pans out. We get a lot of calls and complaints about that street, and it's not ours."

Ness said he has talked to the Ward County engineer, and he's said the street will be lucky to get a patch, since they have so much to do throughout the county.

Kenmare Public Works director Mike Thompson asked, “Can we work on it?”

Thompson said the city could do some repairs to the street if the county allowed them to do so. "We can put in cold patch," Thompson said.

Ness instructed Thompson to contact the county. "See if we can work out a deal."

City engineer Ryan Ackerman said Ward County has applied for a $4 million oil impact grant to fix County 2 from the cemetery turnoff (Ward County 1A) through town to Highway 52. "So it's on their radar," Ackerman said.

Downtown lamp
posts deteriorating
New decorative lamp posts for the downtown park square and surrounding sidewalks were discussed.

Most of the existing lamp posts are in poor condition. Some are not operating, and some have become a safety concern, according to council discussion.

Councilman Todd Ankenbauer, head of the Street Committee, was directed to come up with a plan and estimated cost for replacing the street lights and lamp posts downtown.

Councilman Owen Medlang, an MDU employee, said the street lights around the square are the only ones owned by the city. The rest, throughout the city, are owned by MDU and leased to the city.

Call for bids on
water and sewer
The council approved advertising for bids on the water and sewer to the new Gooseneck Implement dealership south of the airport, and to the two new 12-plex apartment buildings going in south of Division Street.

The owners of the properties will pay for the improvements. Ackerman said the project at the apartments will be paid for through special assessments, while the project to Gooseneck Implement will be paid through revenue bonds and utility impact assessments.

Several other property owners in the areas of these developments have asked about the costs to hook into the new water and sewer improvements. The city will establish a hook-up fee to accommodate anyone interested.

Ackerman said bids for the projects will be in by the next monthly meeting.

Ness stated the need to move the new booster pump station from its site east of the old landfill to the vicinity of the NAWS water tower for it to be better utilized by new development, and for improved fire protection.

Ordinance book
repealed, then adopted
For several months, the city has been operating with a generic city ordinance book provided by the League of Cities.

City engineer Ryan Ackerman, and Ackerman-Estvold, have been revising and fine tuning the new ordinances and incorporating parts of the old ordinances the council wanted to keep.

Following Ackerman's recommendation, the council repealed the generic ordinances and adopted on first reading the newly revised ordinances.

Ackerman said the revisions will continue. He also asked that the council pay special attention to the section on zoning.

Mayor Roger Ness advised the council to check it all over before the second reading next month.

Ackerman said the ordinances will also be run by the planning committee.

In other action:
• The council meeting began with a public hearing on a zoning change. The council approved a change from industrial to residential for four lots in Tolley's Railroad Addition in southwest Kenmare. The lots are owned by Gabe Ellis, just east of the former Carlson Water Service facility.

• A bid of $3744 from Farmers Union Lumber to install new carpet in the Kenmare Branch Library in the Memorial Hall was approved.

• Grants from the city gaming fund from Minot Hockey Boosters gambling activities at South of the Border/Dave's Place were approved.

Kenmare Association of Commerce was approved for $300 to be used for the City-Wide Clean-up to buy treats for the students who participate and for garbage bags.

Kenmare Public School was approved for $1000 towards playground equipment.

Kenmare Summer Arts Institute was approved for $400 towards its summer arts program.

• A raffle permit was approved for Kenmare Lions Club to benefit the fundraiser for a new digital projector for the movie theater.

• The gaming site for Minot Hockey Boosters and South of The Border/Dave's Place was renewed for one year with no changes from the previous contract.

• The council gave its approval to building permits for Jeff Shobe for a garage, Byron Kerbaugh for a garage, Kyle Hennix for a garage, and Jeff Schweitzer for a shop.

• On recommendation of the Planning Commission, the council passed on first reading an ordinance stating that building permits must be approved before the start of construction. If construction has started before a permit is approved, construction must cease until a permit is approved, and the permit fee will be doubled.

• City auditor Barb Wiedmer reported that council candidates have until Friday, April 13 to submit their petitions for candidacy.

• The council was encouraged to participate in Government Week by meeting with students at the elementary school at 8:45 am on Friday.

• Public Works director Mike Thompson was given permission to extend hours at the landfills, or have both the old and new landfills open at the same time, to help out residents with their spring clean up, possibly on the Saturdays in May.

• The city crew was directed to schedule sealing of cracks in the city streets, rather than getting a bid to have it done. "We've got a lot of money in product and a machine capable of getting it done," Ness said.

• Discussion was held on street gutters that could help the flow of runoff water through town on northwest First and Second Avenues.

• Council member Terese Skjordal attended the League of Cities grant writing seminar. She said the number of grants that come available so quickly could make for a full time job for a city grant writer.

• Ness stated city ordinance requires residents to have an address number posted on their house for emergency purposes.

• Police Chief Gary Kraft said new patrolman Seth Engelstad has passed his tests and is now fully licensed.