Lighting project moves forward, City of Conrad budget looked at

FUTURE GOLFER  —  Ian Christensen is getting help from grandpa Jerry Christensen with his golf game Tuesday night at National Night Out.  I-O Photo by Pat Lee





By Buck Traxler, I-O Editor

At the regular Tuesday meeting of the city council, a large variety of topics were voted on.

Primary among the items were the preliminary budget and the historic lighting project.

Before those items were discussed there were other items to get past.

Residents continue to make home improvements at a blistering pace. There were eight residential permits presented this week; one at 701 4th Ave. SW and 805 Mountain View, both re-roofing projects.

At 12 S. Maryland there is a tear down project and at 10 S. Iowa new siding will be going up. At 416 S. Illinois a new garage will be installed, at 15 S. Maryland a new car port will be put up, at 109 5th Ave. NW another roof project will get underway and at 410 S. Michigan, new windows will be installed.

Public Works Director Rich Anderson told the aldermen that crews were grading alley ways, working at and doing maintenance at the water plant and working on filling pot holes.

Cheryl Curry from the Regional Port Authority said the PA is working on an employment agreement and have completed the purchase of two lots in Conrad and will getting a bid package ready for construction of a new house on the site. The PA is planning for a three bedroom – two bath house, around 1,600 square feet.

Curry will present the Safe Routes to School program to teachers during their back to school orientation, in order for them to have time to prepare for more creative ways to promote the health and exercise benefits of walking and riding bikes to school.

She noted that the sidewalk building won’t come until next summer.

She also announced there was good news for the group trying to start up a railroad museum.

They have come up with $1,000 in earnest money to make a down payment on the old BNSF depot on Front Street. They now have six months to come up with $4,000 to purchase the building from the PA.

It was noted that the county has $50,000 in CTEP funds and may give $10,000 to the museum project.

The Port Authority has revised the scope of the rail development study of all potential county sites and uses and will be on the September PRPA agenda for action.

Brad Koon of Kadrmas Lee and Jackson (KJL) Engineers out of Helena presented an estimate on the proposed historical lighting project.

The preferred designed is very similar to the one that was on the front page of the I-O in the July 11 edition. The lighting system will go down 4th Ave. to Front Street, on Main St. from 3rd Ave. SE to the corner of 5th Ave. at Stockman Bank.

Right now, the estimated cost for 29 units is $237,094, less than the original $367,000, but that was for 38 units. On a 4-0 vote, the council moved to approve the task order for KLJ as presented. Work on the project should begin soon, but an exact date was not given. Mayor Wendy Judisch said she was going to the commission meeting on Wednesday to see if the city could obtain more CTEP funding to help pay for the project.

The preliminary budget was presented. Presently it calls for proposed revenues of $5,801,765 and expenditures of $7,527,964.

There will be a public hearing at the Aug. 20 council meeting with a chance for interested individuals to have a public comment on the budget.

The budget may also be viewed at city hall, 413 S. Main, during normal working hours. You are asked to call ahead to view the budget.

There was some discussion on the “Moritz Four” CDBG debt. No payments have been made for two years and there is $9,780.20 outstanding. The council moved by a vote of 4-0 to remove the debt from the books.

On a request from officer Jason Korst, the city will sponsor the upcoming Guns and Hoses softball game on Aug. 18. The city will also provide $87 for a logo.

In other business, there was some discussion by the council on the website for the city. While not up and running yet, the council moved to use as the domain name.

The city council meets every first and third Tuesday at 6 p.m. in the council chambers at 413 S. Main.

The public is always welcome and encouraged to attend a council meeting and see you government at work.