Green River City honors departing mayor and council
The Green River City Council began their evening with an appreciation reception for the outgoing mayor and councilmembers. Mayor Glen Dale Johnson, Councilman Tom Burr and Councilman Blaine Evans were the honorees of the reception. During the reception, a buffet was set out, while all residents were welcome to visit with the elected officials for the town. Each outgoing member of the council was also given a plaque in appreciation of their service to Green River.
Christine Monroe of the Green River Community Center then introduced the new Americorps volunteers who are in Green River. The NCCC offers five areas of specialty for the young people who volunteer for 10 months. Green River Community Center made the decision that they needed help with after school education, and in the application to NCCC, they made the request for volunteers to help students after school at the community center with homework and reading. These new volunteers have been in Green River for three weeks. They are: Lori Sciachitano of New Jersey; Staci Steidler of Pennsylvania; Kate Reese of Virginia; Adam Smith of New York; David Askew of Florida; Carolyn Giovannetti of Wisconsin; Kate Dower of Illinois; Amanda Bischak of New Jersey; Lillian Gehres of Ohio; Kayla Costello of New York; Alex Maynard of New York; and Jason Kittredge of Washington. Mayor Johnson extended deep appreciation for the job these volunteers are doing with the children of Green River.
Mary Winters and Kim McFarland from the Green River Medical Center approached the council for funding to train three staff members to use the new digital x-ray machine that will be installed soon. They explained that grant money has been secured for the purchase of the x-ray machine, and with this upgrade in x-ray capabilities at the medical center better medical care can be given to the residents of Green River. McFarland said, "With this new technology, the x-ray is taken and is transferred electronically to the computer. From there the image can be adjusted to see the image better, and if it is necessary, the image can also be sent electronically to specialists in hospitals for further consultation of the needs of the patient. Our need now is for training for three staff members to be trained in x-ray technology," said McFarland.
Mayor Johnson noted how exciting it is to be receiving this upgrade at the medical center. He told Winters and McFarland that the incoming council and mayor will be required to open the budget for a contribution such as this. Before this can happen a public hearing must be held and urged the two to come back next month when the criteria had been met to open the budget.
John Iverson of Sunrise Engineering presented the bids which have been received for the two projects which will begin soon in Green River. The first, a water improvement project that will install new, bigger water lines in the west end of town, and also install new fire hydrants and better prepare Green River in the event of a structure fire. Iverson opened and read the bids, and the council awarded the bid to Carlyle Excavating of Redmond as theirs was the low bid.
The second project concerns a water line that crosses underneath the river to supply water to residents. The present pipe is a cast iron pipe and is several decades old. Technology has been found that can reline the pipe making replacement unnecessary at this time. A PVC liner will be installed by Val Cotter and Sons who were the low bid for the project. These projects are being funded by a grant from the CIB with partial matching funds from the City of Green River.
A Green River resident has applied to the city for a water connection. At the present time, this resident is using a neighbor's hookup to water nearby stock. His request is for a connection to be used for watering the animals, and a waiver of the impact fee that is charged under ordinance for hookups.
Conae Black, city recorder, read the ordinance and explained that the funds raised from this impact fee are applied to the debt for the water treatment plant and other maintenance and improvements to the plant. In the ordinance, it is stated that the council can waive all or part of the impact fee as this water connection is not to be used for a structure or building project. The council approved to waive all but $200 of the impact fee for the resident.
Monroe reported the community center is providing 63 meals each day to residents, and sign-ins are at 75 per day. She stated that several scouts have approached her concerning Eagle projects. She requested permission from the council to have the scouts install benches along Main Street for the Eagle projects. The council approved.
Councilman Evans encouraged the new mayor and councilmembers to continue with the mosquito abatement projects which have been ongoing in recent years. "West Nile virus is here in Green River, and keeping the mosquitoes under control is very important. We have found the virus in sentinel chickens and mosquitoes which have been tested. We have been lucky that no one had gotten sick. In Grand Junction, Colo., they have had 129 cases, so it is very important to continue this mosquito control project," said Evans.
Mayor Johnson said, "I want to thank you all for your support for the past eight years. It has been a pretty good experience and I have had many good times. It has been a learning experience and it has been fun. I want the new council and mayor to know that the mayor gets all the credit, but it is the council who does most of the work. Mr. Bentley, I want you to know that you can call on me anytime. I will help in any way I can. I wish help had been available to me when I first began. I want the citizens of Green River to know that you are in good hands," said Mayor Johnson.