Mayor Randy Rich and Trustees Rick Catt and Ken Russell have had to deal with a lot of unpleasant things in their 12 year tenure on the Oblong Village Board, so it is only fitting they spent their last meeting dealing with sewer issues.
Wednesday night the board approved a $4 increase to sewer rates. The rate will go from $7.60 to $11.60 per 1,000 gallons.
Russell said the increase will fund repairs and preventative maintenance to aging lift stations, and other infrastructure. The last sewer rate hike was in 2003.
Catt also made a motion to return $50,000 to the sewer fund from the general account to pay back a loan that was used to pay for the North Range St. project. Catt said using that money kept them from having to go to an outside source for the funds. "We are now in a position to return it," said Catt.
Looking to the future the board approved a working budget of $1,383,406.48 for the 2017-18 fiscal year. It is an increase of $339,447 over last year's budget, and that money is earmarked for excavation of the sewer lagoon later this fall. Russell said they have secured commitments from local land owners to spread the excavated material on crop fields, but will have to wait until after fall harvest.
Russell also asked the board for approval to have Connor and Connor Engineering begin the bid process for the excavation. It was granted.
Rich reminded the board that Spring Cleanup will be Thursday, April 27. All items need to be boxed, bagged or bundled. No car parts, or freon containing items will be collected.
Rich also congratulated the mayor and trustee candidates on being elected, and commended them on attending the meeting. Rich also thanked the trustees and village employees for their efforts over the last 12 years. "Made my job easy," said Rich.
In other business the board approved use of the park on July 8, for an "Old Fashion Hootenanny." The event will be sponsored by the Oblong Chamber of Commerce and include music, games, food and fun.
April 17 through 28, the village will be flushing hydrants.
In his monthly police report Chief Chad Pusey said his department issued 12 citation, had eight offences reported and had 88 calls for service.