Fillmore County Auditor/Treasurer hopeful Heidi ‘Bly’ Jones paid a special visit to the Canton City Council during its regularly scheduled meeting held on June 13.
Jones stated her primary purpose of introducing herself as well as attaching faces to the names of the city’s councilmembers. She also detailed her background in having grown up in Fillmore County and currently serving on the Ostrander City Council whilst voicing her over 10 years of experience in the area of expertise in which she is running. Jones closed with a final encouragement to vote in the primary held August 14, in which one of the three candidates will be eliminated, prior to the general election set to occur November 6.
Kathie Haynes, a large contributor to the Mitson Museum and Historical Society, made an appearance at the meeting as well. Haynes opened with a vocalization of her previous mission of obtaining volunteers for the Mitson Museum library, necessary due to a few elders stepping down, all but complete, noting with a chuckle that the council was now “off the hook,” so to speak.
Haynes went on to communicate an account of her personal connection to Florence Mitson, of which the house belonged to prior to being given to the city, and a brief history of the museum, complete with historical artifacts and photographs all currently found within.
Nonetheless, Haynes’ sole objective was made evident when she reported the museum’s success in the acceptance of their application for Paint the Town, which will aid in the obtaining of some 34 gallons of paint needed for interior renovation. Regarding this matter, volunteers are required for the various means of prep preceding painting. However, all conceded that it would be best to first correspond with Vernie Zafft, who initially assisted in determining a rough estimate of the amount of paint essential and agreed to take on some of the more challenging work, to determine his schedule and plans, as well as post a few signs nearby in hopes of attracting those willing to help.
Canton Fireman Jason Magnuson took part in a fair portion of the discussion during the meeting in arguing on behalf of an increase in the retirement benefits for those of the Canton Fire Department, as well as fulfilling a request for cost analysis of retirement coverage by means of PERA.
Magnuson largely advocated his cause, supporting it with the assurances that the request is free and is desired unanimously among the firemen, in addition to the acknowledgements that the city nears the bottom in terms of provisions relating to retirement and that under the current coverage, only one particular Canton fireman has the ability to retire and receive the full amount. Therefore, both of Magnuson’s goals were authorized, with the request signed and planned to be faxed to the association the following day.
Yet again this summer, the Canton softball field continues to be the source of a problem. With still no interest in the formation of a league expressed, the issue of maintenance of the field was brought to the council’s attention by Public Works Director Jon Nordsving.
Nordsving outlined the matter, expressing that upkeep has included spraying for weeds twice every month in addition to occasional dragging, of which results in lofty expenses both monetarily for means of chemicals and in terms of equipment and time.
However, with the accepted opinion among those present to be “hate in letting the ball field go,” it was decided to cut back on spraying to one time per month, with the avoidance of weeds being aided by weekly dragging. The council also supported compensating Nordsving for his willingness to carry out these services throughout the general period of mid-April through mid-October.
A motion was approved for the purchasing of wood chips for the public playground, with the realization that it has been a surprising eight years since such an action was last carried out.
Permission for the use of the City Hall for the Canton Day Off BBQ Contest was affirmed, as well as the privilege of having certified as well as uncertified judges be involved this year.
A building permit specific to a 176 square foot deck resembling an L-shape and estimated at costing around $5,000 requested by Tyler Newman was passed.
A conflict relating to a Town Hall Rental and planned Canton Day Off event was also presented. The building was initially desired by the Hudson family for the purpose of a reunion the day of July 18. However, the Town Hall also planned to be the setting of a community breakfast that same morning from 9-11 a.m.
With the family having already scheduled, paid for, and signed the contract regarding the use of the Town Hall last October, the council went back and forth on just what course of action to take. Though the Hudsons were generously willing to split the day and push the reunion back until the conclusion of the breakfast, members voiced worries of satisfactory cleanliness following the event.
However, Councilmember Charlie Warner seemed to provide what came to be a general consensus with the suggestion that the breakfast be held in the fest tent, thereby enabling the Hudson family to enjoy the Town Hall for the entirety of the day as originally planned.
Noting that some time was still available before a final decision needed to be made, the matter was tabled until the following month, with Councilmember Cindy Shanks requested to talk to the Canton Day Off Committee of such a possibility and report back.
A notation was made that due to the Fourth of July holiday falling on a Wednesday, Richard Sanitation will be picking up garbage and recycling on Tuesday, July 3, rather than making its typical rounds midweek.
The meeting concluded with a brief discussion on the topic of some $2,500 received for the purpose of city “beautification,” with all stumped on just how to utilize the sum. Though many options, such as removing and replacing various bushes, planting trees at the park, and updating an area around the memorial, were discussed, the council opted to get some more information and formulate possible options before debating any further or making any final resolutions of the subject.
The next Canton City Council meeting will be held at Canton City Hall on July 11, at 7 p.m.