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Centralia Aldermen take first look at public works budget, still in closed real-estate negotiations

Posted on Friday, February 9, 2018 at 6:32 am

Centralia Mayor Tim Grenke reading a proclamation honoring the late Coach Jim Enlow.

Centralia Mayor Tim Grenke reading a proclamation honoring the late Coach Jim Enlow.

A six-member audience was in Centralia City Hall for a combined meeting of the Centralia Board of Aldermen and its Public Works Public Utilities committee meeting, minus absent Ward I alderman Andrea Vollrath.

Phil Hoffman, public works foreman announced the city’s new recycling container had arrived and was momentarily stationed at the east end of the city street department. It is already seeing a lot of use. “The way people are using it we will have to have it dumped next week,” he said.

Next up was the preliminary streets and sewer 2019 budget. City Administrator Matt Harline said one of the main expenditures would be “the long-time promise to fix Mayes Meadows . . . and the portion Allen Street between Railroad and Singleton Streets.” Centralia Mayor Tim Grenke said the work on Mayes Meadows was “overdue.”

The budget should allow the city to move father on the Randolph Street project as well, Harline said. “It should aid growth opportunities for the city.”

Hoffmann encouraged the aldermen to keep focused on upgrading the downtown streets. Harline agreed that downtown sidewalks as well as curb and gutter needed attention.

Harline said he was considering another Safe Routes to Schools grant, which would fund work along Booth Street to enable people to more easily walk to the City Park. He said a related federal program might help fund a long-term plan for a new trail system in the park.

Under the water department, department head Mike Forsee said they were responding to several frozen meter calls. Nine out of 45 calls were actual frozen meters, the rest he said were frozen residential water lines or similar problems.

They also discussed a new skid-loader to be shared between the water and streets/sewer departments, no action was taken.

Big ticket item for next year is a bigger digger/derrick truck, Harline said under capital projects discussion, purchased for the city electric department. The estimated cost is $150,000 instead of the initial $75,000 Harline said. In a related topic, he said it is time to look at replacing the city’s power line along the north side of Hwy. 22. He said it was starting to be too small for the demand which is leading increased amount of line loss, in terms of the amount of power purchased and the amount of power sold.

In the Board of Aldermen portion of the meeting, Grenke read aloud a proclamation honoring the late Coach Jim Enlow, educator, coach, alderman and park director. His accomplishments achievements and service to the community will be hard to follow, Grenke said.

From there they spent around 30 minutes in closed session. Grenke said the aldermen unanimously voted to continue ongoing negotiations regarding the possible purchase of property.

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