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Electric customers see savings

Cornell City Council

Because of power cost savings, Cornell residents may have noticed their last utility bill was somewhat lower than the previous month. City administrator Dave DeJongh mentioned the savings at a regular Cornell City Council meeting April 2.

“I feel fortunate that our electric utility was able to…pass that on to our residents, in the form of a reduction on their last electric bill by about 13 percent,” said DeJongh.

Moving forward, DeJongh says the city hopes to continue to offer something similar in savings in the next three to six months.

“When you look at your bill, if you look at power cost adjustment, there will be a minus there,” said mayor Judy Talbot.

As part of business, the council amended Resolution 20-1 Declaration of Emergency, which would allow DeJongh to cancel any and all council, committee and commission meetings, as deemed necessary through June, and for 2020. Talbot says with the direction to the amendment, he can modify council meeting schedules as necessary, and apply for any grants or funding in regard to COVID- 19.

DeJongh can also purchase business services that may be needed, pay bills, and perform any other actions for the protection and wellfare of those within the city.

“So, this isn’t saying we are definitely going to be canceling, it’s just saying if we have to, we’re covered,” said council member Ashley Carothers.

DeJongh says in the event there is a serious outbreak of the virus locally, members would be left with no way to legally cancel meetings without the amendment.

“Nobody has that authority, unless you give that authority,” he said.

The next meeting is set to be an organizational meeting Tuesday, April 21, at 7 p.m., at the council chambers. During that time, the new elected officials would be sworn in and committees will be re-formed.

While residents are under the governor’s Safer at Home order, Cornell citizens can go through their house and garage for extra garbage pickup day May 14. Mattresses, couches or 10 bags of trash can be set at curbside for disposal, at no extra cost.

Normally, an electronics drop-off takes place in the spring, but has now been pushed back to October.

Carothers also took a moment to thank everyone who showed up to the recent Red Cross blood drive in Holcombe, which saw an influx of donations.

“But, if you guys did not get a chance or you’re still looking to donate…we are now looking at about 200,000 donations short for blood,” she said.

A close option for donation, is Friday, April 17, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Bloomer Fire Station.

Carothers also mentioned that while most members of the family are at home, this is a perfect time to practice fire drills, in the event of an emergency.

Ending Talbot’s last full meeting as mayor, after she decided she would not run for reelection, council member Steve Turany said he wanted to thank Talbot for her years of service to the community.

“And I’m sure, you’ll continue to serve in some other capacity,” he said. “Thank you for everything you’ve done.”