By Pam Robinson
The Mount Vernon City Council listened Thursday night, Nov. 15, as council member Steve Fuelling, street and light chairman, discussed the latest events at the West Elementary rain garden.
That same day, Fuelling said he, engineer Ben Barnes of Bernardin Lochmueller & Associates, or BLA, and the city street department did dye testing at the rain garden most of the day, from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. As a result, officials have now identified what was storm sewer and what was sanitary sewer. After looking also at elevation changes, officials believe that running a line down Venice Avenue is the best solution to flooding.
Surveying has been done as well although no report is yet available. More options may be considered when all the data are presented.
In answering questions from council member Andy Hoehn, Fuelling noted that officials are trying to get water to Wolflin, but pipe is missing there. He added that an 8-inch pipe down Venice south should take overflow out.
Hoehn then pointed out that once the rain garden is filled, flooding begins within 30 minutes. He questioned the option of going north on Wolflin to Mill Creek. Fuelling said officials are not looking at that option now.
Fuelling emphasized that BLA recognizes there is a problem at the rain garden.
In other business:
•Council approved the third and final reading of the ordinance updating, restating, and recodifying Title IX, General Regulations, Chapter 91, more familiarly known as the amended animal control ordinance. That ordinance, numbered 12-24, incorporates the changes discussed at the previous city council meeting.
•Council approved the second reading of the city salary ordinance for the year ending December 31, 2013.
•Council member Andy Hoehn reported that Countrymark had moved their ammonia tanks to the east side of the storage building and had installed new lighting for security. In addition, the company is installing surveillance cameras the first week of December.
•Mayor John Tucker reported on the status of the bridge east of town. He stated that he had confirmed when a county council member called him that the City of Mount Vernon wanted to proceed with the project. During the conversation, the county council member said money had been appropriated for the project. He added, however, that the county has received calls regarding the bridge—not all of them positive.
•Council member Bill Curtis asked if Sitco had agreed to provide wireless service at the riverfront a few years ago. City Attorney Beth McFadin Higgins said she would check the agreements she has on file.
•Council member Hoehn reported on the following matters also: 1) the Area Plan Commission is taking on the change in the ordinance concerning the number of pets permitted in a household; 2) everything has been approved for Casey’s General Store, which will be located between Barbee and Everett streets and will take up that entire city block, so work can begin soon; 3) Magnetite, east of the city, has started pouring concrete and will be tying into the city water and sewer systems; 4) the new one-way road leading out of Southwind Port should be ready in about 18 months.
•Council member Fuelling asked for an update on the BP Station cleanup.
•When meeting as the Water Utility Board, council members received an update on the water project from Rich DeMarco with Johnson Controls, Inc., or JCI. After his report, DeMarco provided a photo slide presentation of some of the work for the water project, using a new projector and screen that JCI donated for the City Hall Annex. DeMarco’s report included the information that the new electrical building is 100 percent in place with all conduit installed; that the installation of the two 18-inch intake pipes from the deep well to the river edge is 100 percent complete; that the final pour is scheduled for the walls of the deep well the week of Thanksgiving, with plans to start piping up to the lamella building later this month.
The Mount Vernon City Council will meet again Thursday, December 13, at 7 p.m. in the City Hall Annex. Although the Board of Works will meet Thursday, November 29, at 4 p.m., council has cancelled its meeting later that night.
By Pam Robinson
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