By Barb Pert Templeton
The May 17 regular bi-monthly meeting of the Algonac City Council had officials approving a number of items related to the Water and Sewer Plant and getting updates on city projects from the city manager.
The council approved the refurbishment of water plant low service pumps #1 & #2: at a cost of $40,698 it was noted that one pump will be refurbished at a time. A water plant sludge removal & gate valve repair for $5,160 was also okayed. The third item approved was for a UPS System battery replacement for the water plant at a cost of $4,490. The plant had been experiencing frequent power outages. Finally, the council okayed a sewer cleaning and televising project change order for $4,400.
Algonac City Manager Denice Gerstenberg provided officials with a report updating them on several projects for the city.
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Pool Update: In February 2021 the City Council hired an architect to design a new pool. The new pool cost was estimated at
$1.7 million, and to help with that cost the city applied for a State of Michigan grant in April 2021. In December 2021 the city was notified that they would receive a $300,000 grant for the pool. However, the city cannot move forward without a Project Agreement in place with the State of Michigan. If the city were to move forward, they would lose the $300,000 grant. Normally, this appropriation takes place in early spring. For some reason the appropriations bill necessary to release the funds is languishing in the House appropriations committee. We are in contact with the state and hope that action will be taken soon, Gerstenberg said.
Community Clean-Up June 11 & 12: Clay and Algonac residents may dispose of trash at any location. Clay has agreed to let Algonac residents dispose of their hazardous materials at the Clay site. This is a great convenience for Algonac residents; otherwise, they would have to go to the Smith Creek Landfill. Tires with the rims removed will also be accepted
Scout Park Playqround Equipment: Delivered on May 12 and as soon as a contractor can be lined up it will be installed.
Riverfront Park Swing: Facebook loves the new swing and people are asking for more. Over 4,000 people reached and all comments have been positive. The city is looking to add a second three-person swing.
Emergency Management Exercise May 26, 2022: The Coast Guard and Enbridge will be holding an exercise on the St. Clair River from the North Channel DNR boat launch to the northern portion of Russell Island starting around 9 a.m. The command post will be located at Seafarers.
Establishment of Waste Water Treatment Plan Authority: Meeting was held on May 12 to review a first draft of the Article of Incorporation.
Council Members Comments
Mayor Terry Stoneburner said she was recently invited to the opening of the Challenger Learning Center at SC4 and found it fascinating with hand-on activities and simulators in place that were amazing. She highly recommended everyone go to the center and check things out. The next meeting of the St. Clair County North Channel Park will be on June 14 where they will compile ideas they’ve gathered for the new park. Stoneburner then provided a shortlist of actions the current city council has taken of late: She listed inspecting over 250 homes with basements for illegal connections, starting the first street sweeping program in 2021, starting the Algonac Wave quarterly city newsletter in 2022 on the back of water bills, starting the inspection of all rentals for illegal connections in 2020, replacing main holes as needed so surface water cannot enter the system among other items.
Mayor Pro Tem Michael Bembas said he wants to see the new pool become a reality too, stating he hopes the state “will get their act together soon” and the city will get the ball rolling on the project. He also noted that the annual U.S. Post Office food drive saw 5,300 pounds of food collected from Clay Township, Harsens Island and Algonac. They also received $760 in monetary donations. Bembas said it’s been two years since the food drive was hosted in the city, and he appreciated the generosity and reminded everyone that you can donate to the food bank all year round. Councilman Jake Skarbek stated that while he’s totally against raising taxes all the time, he truly believes the ambulance half millage needs to get passed in August.