McGregor Council gets info on nuisance abatement procedures

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By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

The McGregor Council sought information about nuisance abatement procedures at its March 9 meeting, as it plans to tackle some issues around the community in the coming months.

A nuisance, said city attorney Mike Schuster, includes issues like excessive weeds, grass that’s never cut, junk on the property and buildings in disrepair. “Whatever’s unattractive to the senses,” he noted.

Schuster said it’s up to the council to determine if a property has a nuisance issue. The standard procedure is to first notify the property owner through a letter, specifically detailing what they need to do to fix the nuisance, whether that be cutting the grass, fixing a window or disposing of something on the property, Schuster added. A timeline to remedy the problem can also be given. If the property owner does not work to get rid of the nuisance, formal action can then be taken, Schuster stated.

If the council is strict, and doesn’t lose steam on pursuing the matter, Schuster said that will help further nuisance situations from dragging on for extended periods of time.

Mayor Harold Brooks asked the council members to identify their top five nuisances in the community and bring them to the next meeting.

“If we do a couple major ones, it will show people that we’re serious,” he said.

Budget

The council approved the city’s fiscal year 2016-2017 budget, which estimates an ending fund balance on June 30, 2017 of $1,572,344, with expenditures of $4,516,694. The estimated total tax levy rate per $1,000 valuation on regular property is $14.09.

Turner Park playground 

City Administrator Lynette Sander said the new Turner Park nature-themed playground equipment will be installed on Monday and Tuesday, April 11 and 12.

Upcoming projects

The council also approved bids for several projects and pieces of equipment. For the current budget, the council approved purchasing a new Skag Turf Tiger Mower from J&J Equipment & Sales for $15,329, while Meyer Concrete was selected to perform concrete work at Turner Park for $7,776 and McGregor Roofing was selected to do the park’s concession stand roof for $1,880 and do the city hall roof for $6,380.

In the next fiscal year, La Crosse Glass was selected for new library windows at a cost of $5,072, while Vorwald was pegged to do work on the manhole on Main Street (at Sixth and Seventh Streets) for $4,955 and eliminate lift station #4 for $5,119.

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