City projects, fire prevention and new housing were among the matters on Wahpeton Mayor Steve Dale’s mind Monday, April 5.
Dale concluded a Wahpeton City Council meeting by giving a “Mayor’s Minute Update,” sharing his thoughts on current topics. In the last week, Dale said, he was most frequently asked about the city’s east side sanitary sewer project.
“I ultimately feel this project will help minimize odors at Lift Station No. 1 and get the wastewater to pond No. 1 in a better condition,” the mayor said.
Councilwoman at-large Tiana Bohn, prior to Dale’s comments, gave an update on the sewer project.
“You’ll see some work along 16th Avenue,” Bohn said. “Starting last week, there was the removal of some of those mature trees. The contractor is expected to be done with the whole project in mid-June.”
Residents are asked to be on the lookout for more information about sidewalk closures and other access.
Wahpeton is not immune from the risk of a damaging fire, Dale said. He’s asking residents to be careful as the city waits for spring. Rain was forecast to begin the evening of Tuesday, April 6 and last through Wednesday, April 7.
“On the COVID front, I’d like to say that the battle is won but the war goes on. With the different strains and the numbers seeming to be trending up, we need to be careful and considerate of others,” Dale said.
Three sets of housing trusses were recently delivered to the Westdale neighborhood. The trusses will be used to build some of the Westdale II homes in the land north of Walmart in Wahpeton.
“We’re still expecting 14 new homes out there, possibly 18, this year,” Dale said. “We’re going to be out of lots out there.”
Earlier in the meeting, Leach Public Library Director Melissa Bakken announced the building’s new hours. The library is open from 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Mondays, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesdays-Thursdays and 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Fridays.
Finance Director and Auditor Darcie Huwe’s report including information on the 67th North Dakota Legislative Assembly. Held in Bismarck and limited to 80 days total, the legislative assembly may adjourn early on Friday, April 23. Seven working days would be available to legislators should it be necessary to reconvene and discuss matters like disbursing American Rescue Plan funds.
In other news, council voted unanimously to approve the final replat of the former Central Elementary site. The one-block parcel of land is being redeveloped for new housing. Other unanimous votes included giving conditional approval for street closures as part of the upcoming Downtown Alive! on Saturday, May 15 and day two of the Second Annual Headwaters Music Festival, Friday, July 30; allocating $75,000 from Wahpeton’s sales tax for economic development fund to recapitalizing the mini-match fund program; and accepting an urban grant award from the North Dakota Department of Transportation to assist in Phase B of a project affecting Dakota Avenue’s side streets.
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, recognized by Mayor Dale with a proclamation read by Community Development Director Chris DeVries.
“The goal of Sexual Assault Awareness Month is to raise public awareness about sexual violence and educate communities on how to prevent it,” DeVries stated.
Councilwoman at-large Renata Fobb attended the meeting by conference call. Councilman Jason Goltz, 2nd Ward, was absent.
Wahpeton’s council is scheduled to meet at 5 p.m. Tuesday, April 13 for a Board of Equalization meeting, followed by the next meeting of the city public works committee. The next regularly scheduled council meeting will be held at 5 p.m. Monday, April 19 at Wahpeton City Hall.