Edina’s July Council Meeting Becomes Quite Intense
By Carol Kincaid
Though the temperatures in Edina’s City Hall were much cooler than the July 14 day outside—tempers became heated inside when resident Scot Krunze criticized the Council’s handling of derelict buildings and properties within the city.
Mayor Davey Strickler took umbrage with Krunze’s accusation that the Council “took no pride in their city”. Mayor Strickler claimed the Council was “as proud of Edina as anything”.
Krunze noted the property next to his own has many probable violations of City ordinances, and wanted to know why they weren’t enforced. Mayor Strickler and Chief of Police Roger Waibel attempted to explain that the parties in question own many properties in town and through the years have been taken to court, paid fines, and sometimes made changes. Krunze stated that he would be returning to City Council meetings until something is done about his neighbor.
Chief Waibel noted later, during his report that his priority now is “cleaning up Milltown”, locating the properties that the City crews will have to mow. These are property owners who have ignored City requests to clean up or mow their property. (Charges for City labor will become a lien on the tax bills of the properties.)
In other business, two building permits were approved, one submitted by Sam Smith at 606 Marion for a 30’ by 30’ pole barn garage with a concrete floor; the other submitted by Tom Dudley for a 10’ by 20’ “run in shed” on South Payson St. Both permits were approved by a five to zero vote (Donnie Davis was absent).
Reports were presented by Brad Eitel, Wastewater Superintendent and Mike Wriedt, Superintendent of Utilities in addition to the Chief of Police.
Supt. Eitel reported that he had been battling the “high (run off) flow and low food source all month long, due to heavy rains. He noted a nine-inch total for the month. He also told the Council that there would be a Missouri DNR inspection scheduled for mid or late July.
He also stated that the “wastewater treatment facility is designed to treat 220,000 gallons per day. The average daily flow for June was 224,000 gallons per day, this calculates out to 101.8 percent of the design flow and a total of 6,713,000 gallons treated.”
Supt. Wriedt reported on his activities, saying he had started reworking the streets, but they were over-budget on materials and he “still has more he’d like to get done”. He told the Council members that the trash truck would probably have to be replaced next year, and asked that they budget accordingly.
Supt. Wriedt told the Aldermen that a storm drain causing problems under the sale barn is actually a private drain, not one maintained by the City.
Cindy Gunter of the Knox County R-I Smokebusters attended the meeting, reporting that the group had been funded for $153,000, which would allow them to function for another 36 months. She also told Council members that students Amber Hayes and Brett Bryant had both spoken about their program before a state gathering and did a good job.
Annette Sweet, Ameren UE Customer Service Advisor informed the board that the next time Edina was scheduled for tree trimming (away from utility lines) the trimming may be more severe. She left information with the City about possibly replacing fast growing trees with a different type.
She also told Council members that there would possibly be a rate increase in 2009, and urged the members to inform any young people who like to work outside that there is currently a utility work recruitment program underway.
Mayor Strickler told Board members that Liz Grove, General Manager of the Clarence Cannon Wholesale Water Commission is retiring. He also spoke about a probable base rate charge increase. There will be a Public Hearing at the August meeting.