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Swimming pool heats up city meeting

by Del Bartels

The Philip City Council meeting on Monday, July 6, quickly finished up old business and then addressed guests concerning new business.

The replacement of 1,000 gallon water meters has been completed. The council has an updated version of a map concerning a comprehensive plan for future land use and building codes. Following a water line installation, the ground leveling of city land behind John Kangas' property will be completed and grass seed will be applied, making the property as it was before the installation.

Marlene Knutson, representing the Central Development Block Grant, said, "The payrolls are coming in. I think that we are pretty good." CDBG is a major funding source for the city's current major projects. The Philip school drainage project is virtually complete and some of the payments have been authorized. A lingering concern is that the hot water well piping is not part of the One-Call system that should be phoned before any digging is done. Councilman Greg Arthur said, "The geo-thermal users should be responsible to locate their own line." Councilman Mike Vetter agreed, "I would think that the responsibility would be on those who benefit from it." The Ash Street improvement project is also complete, as is the airport improvement project.

The council approved all current building permits, which include Christine Andrus - 6' privacy fence, Mark Foley - amend deck permit from 12'x 25' to 12'x 36', Joyce Hart - replace back steps, Bernard Jeska - leveling yard and installing retaining wall, Murray's Coffee Confections and More - sign and remodeling, Don and Tami Ravellette - additions and porch replacement, Doug and JoAnn West - repair or replace retaining wall with fencing and replace some fencing, and Doug and JoAnn West - 1" waterline and tap.

The Haakon County Young Women have suggested that the council look into putting in a heater for the city's 100,000 gallon swimming pool. The incoming water, from Scotchman Industry's hot water well, has been measured at 80 degrees. The pool has been measured at between 79 and 80 degrees during 2008 and 2009. The HCYW question this and would like the water temperature to be at least 82 degrees. The HCYW have offered to help with the estimated $4,000-$5,000 cost of a heater, though the heater's installation and fuel would be up to the city.

Kangas said, "Once we put in a heater, we will have to use city water because the hot water is too corrosive on seals and other parts of a heating unit." It was also mentioned that, the warmer the water, the more chlorine required.

The city will look into the exact cost of the heater, the installation requirements, the city's budget and other aspects. The HCYW agreed to table the topic until the next council meeting.

The council approved hiring Alesha Lopez as a water aerobics instructor at $7.25 per hour. All the pool's lifeguards have passed a Water Safety Instruction course which qualifies them to teach water safety anywhere in South Dakota. This year's swimming lessons will be held at the pool from July 13-17 and July 27-31. Classes will be limited so that each instructor is responsible for only three or four students at a time.

According to Police Chief Kit Graham, "I thought Festival Days went very well. The security group did a good job and we had very few problems. The were a few underage drinkers and one disorderly. The area cordoned off was not any too large."

The city approved, upon the sponsors acquiring adequate insurance, a special event license application for a Breast Cancer Benefit street dance to be held on Saturday, August 1. The event is being coordinated by Kalcy Triebwasser and Krystal Noteboom. The council noted that Oak Street could be cordoned off nearer to the fire department's parking lot. That way, people getting lost on their way to the demolition derby could turn around with their trailers, rather than trying to back up.

The council also approved a request from Deetta Terkildsen regarding peddler's licensing for the 2009 farmer's market.

The warning system siren work is progressing, with legal paperwork and easements to be soon completed.

The fourth application, this one to the South Dakota Department of Transportation, for funding for a pedestrian and bike path on Larimer Street has been denied. Mayor John Hart said that SD-DOT said, "We'll keep it in mind for later traditional enhancement (which has been two of the previous denials). Hart said, "This is a safety issue and we have always known it."

The next scheduled meeting for the Philip City Council will be at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, August 3, in the Haakon County Community Room.