Saturday, January 20, 2018

Columbus Public Works Director Dennis Holten

Detailed sewer study approved Columbus

The Columbus Town Council approved a suggestion by Public Works Director Dennis Holten to conduct a more detailed study of the town’s sewer mains in preparation for the planned sewer replacement project during the Feb. 18 meeting.
Holten said there are other ways of rehabilitating the sewer lines than open-trench replacement. In some cases the sewer lines may be able to be relined rather than being replaced. Cameras can be used to assess the condition of existing lines. Relining the sewer lines could allow the town to rehabilitate more feet of sewer lines than if lines are just replaced, Holten said.
The council agreed to spending $10,000 to study the condition of the existing sewer lines.
Police Department
Columbus Police Department arrested an 18-year-old man for the sale of dangerous drugs on Feb. 4. The case had been under investigation for several months.
Officer Jacob Ward successfully completed his one-year probationary period on Jan. 2.
Call volume has slowed down recently despite the warm weather. The police department has been putting a lot of time into felony investigations.
Public Works
A water service line leak on 4th Avenue that services the Columbus Apartments was repaired. The leak was bad enough that it saturated the ground. The saturated ground apparently moved during backfilling causing a second leak which has also been repaired. The ground is being allowed to dry before being backfilled again.
Public Works crews have been patching holes and sweeping streets during the recent good weather. Crews also spent several days working on the roads in Itch-Kep-Pe Park.
Holten recently asked for a check made out to John Murray for an easement through his property for the CTEP Trail/Path project. Murray is currently away for several weeks which will delay the project. The payment is in the amount of $5,000 and Holten has asked Stillwater County for some reimbursement.
Town Attorney
Town Attorney Doug Howard was asked during the last council meeting about the penalty for violating the town ordinance requiring property owners or tenants to clear snow and ice from sidewalks. According to Howard’s report to the council, the town has the right to remove snow and ice from sidewalks if the owner or tenant has not done so following a 24-hour notice.
Charges for the snow or ice removal are then assessed and collected in the same manner as other town taxes. Noncompliance with the ordinance is also subject to the town’s General Penalty Ordinance which may result in a fine of not more than $500 or by imprisonment of up to six months, or both.
Howard has worked on a bench trial and eight other criminal cases that are pending in City Court since the last council meeting.
Zoning Change Hearing
A public hearing has been scheduled for a zoning change request by Rick and Maria Hamilton. The property is at the corner of S 5th Street and Clough Avenue.
The Zoning Commission approved the request on Jan. 27 and has recommended approval to the town council. Columbus fire, police, and public works departments all anticipate no adverse effect from the proposed zoning change.
The hearing will be held during the next town council meeting on Monday, March 2 at 7:30 p.m.
Airport Board
Dennis Holten was reappointed to the Airport Board.