City exploring move to take over Norley Hall

17_5856STORM CLOUDS BREWING  — Wednesday evening, Mother Nature graced the Conrad area with some interesting weather including these clouds. The clouds appeared to be the start of some tornado-like activity but God’s grace just brought the area lots of rain and some wind.  I-O Photo by Barb Endler

By Buck Traxler, I-O Editor

The city is presently in negotiations with the Horizon Lodge on a new lease contract for Blue Sky Villa.

It was announced Monday at the city council meeting that an engineering firm retained by the city has suggested the city look into the possibility of taking over operations at Norley Hall in Blue Sky Villa.

Mayor John Shevlin commented that the roof needs to be replaced, a very spendy item, and needs to be considered in the possibility of taking on the hall.

If this came about, there is the possibility that the city might move their offices out to BSV-Norley Hall. The city owns the portion of the building on Main St. where city hall is located.

Norley Hall is home to the Pondera Players. Nothing would change on that side of the building which used to house a small commissary but now hosts the theater group, receptions, dinner banquets, elections and other functions.

He went on to add, “There has to be a lot of thought that goes into this.” There was no action taken by the council. They will study the matter and get more information before making a decision.

Five building permits were approved. One at 19 N. Kansas for a driveway slab another at 13 1st Ave. NW, 3 N. Washington and 117 S. Virginia, all dealing with fencing and the fifth, at 6 S. Delaware for a handicap access were all approved.

In the public comment segment, Chief Gary Dent asked to be on the agenda for the next meeting for a CofC-Lions Club funding request.

Jacob Gouchenour, a Boy Scout in Troop 513, was on hand to present plans and a cost estimate for a pavilion in Keil Park. The estimated cost of the project is $1,893.83. He will be doing the project for an Eagle Scout badge. Gouchenour is the son of Sam and Andrea Gouchenour of Conrad.

A schismatic was given to Rich Anderson, public works director, to review. This item will be on the agenda at the next meeting for council consideration.

Scott and Connie Hanson were on hand to see about getting approval to tie into a city water line where the Walston/Prewett line splits.

The new line will need to be metered. Public Works Director Anderson will check on costs and report back to the council for action at the next meeting. Mayor Shevlin commented, “We’ll figure out something that will work.”

Pool Manager Becky Rammell submitted a report to the council with a draft for them to consider for next year’s pool operation.

In part she is looking at a fee increase, next year, to $35, up from $25 this season for lessons. She would like to run four sessions and maybe an adult swimming class and have family passes be $100 for everyone, rural or city.

One session passes, lap swim, punch cards and rural individual cards would remain the same as this past year.

She noted that the aerobic classes seemed to work well and also asked the council to consider purchasing an aquabot (robot) to clean the pool.

Action on these items will be considered at a later date.

The council members put their stamp of approval on four resolutions, R-1027, 1028, 1029, and 1030.

All four resolutions are tied into CDBG grants (Community Development Block Grants). The first deals with the Hatch Act; 1028 named Corinne Rose, county sanitarian, as an environmental certifying agent; 1029 deals with the Federal Fair Housing Act for which the city agrees to abide by; and 1030 deals with complaint resolutions and the ADA (American Disabilities Act) complaint form.

For interested parties, these resolutions are open to view and go over at city hall during normal working hours.

The next regular city council meeting will be Sept. 7, one day later than usual because of the Labor Day Holiday, 7:30 p.m. at city hall 411-1/2 S. Main St.