The Minnesota Historical Society has awarded Granite Falls a Minnesota Historical and Cultural Heritage grant in the amount of $17,500 for the Andrew Volstead House for a conditions assessment project. The city council was informed of the grant at their Monday night meeting by City Manager Crystal Johnson. The grant will allow the city to work with a structural engineer to inspect the building, and put together plans that help in applying for larger grants to execute said plans. Some expected renovations include replacing parts of the roof and replacing rotted wood. Mayor Smiglewski mentioned how the house is one of only 25 National Historic Landmarks in Minnesota, and it was the 18th such landmark named in the State.
In other news:
The council also discussed several ongoing projects:
The KCC is hoping to have the new water slide installation begin next week.
The council voted to approve the first reading on an ordinance to update the language that governs zoning variances. The recommendation comes from the League of Minnesota Cities, since the current language in the Granite Falls ordinance was rendered "outdated" due to changes in state statutes made in 2010-2012.
A worker from Quam Construction hit an underground power line when working on the Barber Circle project, which caused a power outage. The outage affected the water plant and caused the elevator in that building to stop working, and also caused the water tower communication system to malfunction. City Manager Crystal Johnson, City Engineer Mike Amborn, and Quam Construction will meet with City Electrical Superintendent Perry Peterson and City Water Superintendent Chris Anderson to discuss who will cover what costs from the incident.
The Memorial Park Task Force is working on design for the nature-based playground and RV campground that will be part of the Phase 2 grant. They are working on moving up the timeline to get bids for the next phase earlier next year.
The city has received some complaints on Property 741 on Highway 212. There were reports of debris falling on adjacent properties. The owner of the 741 property requested to do their own private inspection and have the council examine that report and then having the city inspector review their inspector’s findings. The council agreed to that approach.
In the last meeting, the council discussed searching for grants for additional safety improvements for the city hall. Johnson reported that she has been in contact with Tim Jurgen with the State of Minnesota to explore applying for a FEMA grant, and the extent of the improvements.