Abby council seeking Ward 3 representative
One of the first duties of the Abbotsford City Council in its new term will be to find someone to replace Mayor Jim Weix in his now-vacant Ward 3 seat.
In addition to winning an uncontested race for mayor on April 6, Weix also won re-election as one of the council’s two Ward 3 representatives. His decision to accept the mayor’s position leaves that seat open for now.
At its reorganizational meeting on April 20, the council agreed to accept application letters from Ward 3 residents interested in filling the seat, with the goal of appointing someone at the next council meeting on May 3.
One such resident, Tracie Olson, told the council that she is interested in the filling the two-year term.
Speaking during the public comment portion of the meeting, Olson, 64, noted that she has been a resident of the city for 34 years and raised two kids here who are now adults.
“I will try to be honest and fair and do my best,” she said.
Besides submitting an application letter, interested Ward 3 residents are also be expected to attend the May 3 meeting to speak to the council.
_ The council appointed Renee Hinrichsen and Monica Dukelow to new three-year terms on the Abbotsford Public Library Board of Trustees.
_ The council appointed Heather Lindgren and Danielle Treankler to the room tax commission, taking over for Eric Reis and Dave Hediger.
_ Ald. Sarah Diedrich was appointed to the Colby-Abbotsford Police Commission, along with Ald. Mason Rachu. All other committee and commission appointments stayed the same for 2021-2022.
_ The council voted to allow Mayor Weix and administrative assistant Erin Mueller to sign checks and other transactions on all city bank accounts. Two signatures are required for every transaction, there are a total of four authorized signers, also including Ald. Mason Rachu and city administrator Dan Grady.
_ DPW Craig Stuttgen said Melvin Companies is ripping out sidewalk on the east side of Fourth Avenue just north of the Spruce Street intersection. A block of sidewalk will then be added on the west side of Fourth as part of a Safe Routes to School project that was started last summer.
After school lets out for the summer, all of North Fourth Avenue, from Spruce to Pine street, will be reconstructed to improve the roadway and replace one block of utilities.
When asked if residents on Fourth will be able to maintain access to their driveways, Stuttgen said the work will be done one block at a time, so some type of access should be available.
“We’ll always get them in and out,” he said.
Also, when summer school is in session during the month of July, busses will be using Hiline instead of Fourth to avoid conflicts with construction crews.
_ The council approved an $8,800 contract with Cedar Corporation to design a one-block reconstruction of North Third Avenue, between Larch and Pine, at an estimated cost of $73,370.
_ Utility operator Josh Soyk said Brunner Well Drilling was able to increase the capacity of the city’s wells by 15,000 gallons per day by cleaning out wells in the Eau Pleine well field.
_ The council approved an $8,000 contract with MSA Professional Services to prepare and submit an application for a Community Development Block Grant. If awarded, the grant could be used to refurbish the city’s water tower, rehab the city’s existing wells and drill new wells to meet increased water demand.
_ The council approved a temporary beer license and street use permit for First City Days, which is scheduled for Aug. 13-15 at Red Arrow Park. An alcohol operator’s license was also approved for event organizer Dean Wiese.
_ The council reviewed and approved a total of $644,695 bills, which included $199,500 for new endloader purchased for the public works department.