By Alex Haglund
Residents of the Willowbrook subdivision could use a sidewalk to safely make their way to the rest of Nashville on foot Andy Kirchner said to the Nashville City Council on Thursday, June 1.
Kirchner said he would be willing to allow the use of a piece of property he owns at the intersection of IL-15 and Willowbrook to have a sidewalk put onto it, if the council thought that might be a possibility.
There was a barn on the piece of property that he mentioned, but that has recently been removed, and without it there, Kirchner said that the main impediment to using it for sidewalk space has been removed as well.
The residents of the subdivision and the area near there, “when they do choose to walk up and down the road or ride their bikes,” Kirchner said, “there isn’t much shoulder there…I’ve seen some close calls over the years.”
Right now, Kirchner said that he is telling neighbors to just walk across the property, rather than to put themselves in the road, but told the council that he and his wife would be willing to deed it to the city – or do whatever they needed to – with the end goal of seeing a sidewalk there at some point.
Nashville’s zoning administrator Rich Schuette asked Kirchner if he would be willing to allow the city to install sidewalks without deeding over the property, and Kirchner stated that he was not asking the council for anything in particular and that he just wanted them to consider the idea of the sidewalk.
The property is in Washington County, Kirchner said, and Mayor Erik Rolf stated that to get this done, it would likely need to be annexed into Nashville. Councilor Josh Fark said that he believed that this sort of thing had been done in the past without taking the property over from the residents, and with the residents and the city splitting the costs.
Rolf thanked Nashville Police Chief Brian Fletcher and Lieutenant Greg Hopfinger, who wrote for a grant from State Farm Insurance which gave the city 25 computers – 15 laptops and 10 desktops.
“I’ve got one of the laptops on my desk right now,” Rolf said, “and let me tell you, it’s pretty nice.”
Fletcher stated that the grant was a type open to municipalities, government agencies, schools and not-for-profits. Rolf stated that any city employees or departments with a need for the computers should let them know either through himself, Fletcher or Utilities Superintendent Blaine Middleton.
The city’s utilities department will be purchasing a new meter reading handheld, a Sensus 6501, at a cost $5,993.03, from HD Supply and Waterworks.
“We had one of them go down,” said Councilor Doug Hargan, “and we don’t have any spares.”
When one of the readers goes down,” Middleton told the council, “it creates a great headache for city hall up here.” when the department is down a reader, they need to collect and enter the numbers that would have been read automatically, manually, after another employee is done with their reader.
Middleton said that the models they are using are no longer being made, “so we’re on a phase-out anyway,” but that the 6501 model being purchased will work with all of the other parts of the system the city already has.
Once the current model is purchased, the city will be up and running for the time being, and Middleton will come up with a plan for the council to begin purchasing new readers at a set rate to avoid having a large expense of replacing a number of readers all at once, and to avoid the pain of having readers go down without spares again.
The utility department will now also be going to summer hours, just like the street department has.
For Memorial Day through Labor Day, the department will be working from 6 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., except for one employee who will be staying from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. to be able to coordinate hours with city hall. This shift in the department’s hours is on a trial basis. “We’ll see how this works,” said Rolf.
The council approved Ordinance 2017-1, which authorizes the mayor or councilors to participate in meetings via telephone or other telecommunications medium (Skype was mentioned), while not physically present at the meetings.
Clint Johannes will be returning to the Street Department as part time summer help. Johannes has worked with the Department in the past and Schuette requested he be rehired for the summer.
The council approved a new trash and mowing crew leader for the street department. The last crew leader was Doug Hale, but after his retirement, no one has filled the role until now.
The new crew leader will be Steve Kurwicki, who will receive a $0.25-per-hour raise for the first 90 days in the position, followed by an additional raise of $0.25-per-hour after that.
In May, 319 residents recycled 10.09 tons of materials using the city’s recycling service.