MILFORD — Milford is slowly replacing its 117 year-old water infrastructure “one crisis at a time,” observed outgoing council member Joellen Free at the May 13 meeting of the town council.
The council voted to approve $39,705 for the repair of a sewer line damaged during the construction of a new Lake City bank on the corner of SR 15 and Emeline Street. The leak created a road hazard on SR 15 and water loss on the town’s south side.
“It’s a hard punch to take,” admitted Steven Marquart, street superintendent, of the expenditure; however, Marquart has long warned the council of the town’s dependence on a water infrastructure, which in some areas dates back to the original system built in 1902. Budget constraints have limited the council to replacing the system one section at a time.
Money for the emergency fix was available in the town’s county economic development incremental tax fund, or CEDIT.
Marquart informed the board sewer work for the new Lake City Bank is complete, and when the paving is complete, he said, “we’ll see if they’ll help us out.”
Beer and Slabaugh will also soon be completing planned infrastructure repairs on the town’s east side by the end of the week. In addition, Phend and Brown expects to be finished with paving and striping before the end of May.
Marquart also reported on the status of Waubee Lake Park, which experienced a theft of roughly $500 of equipment as well as vandalism. He exhorted residents to report suspicious activity to local police. “Do not hesitate if you see something that looks suspicious.”
The council approved $3,800 for Thompson Concrete to pour a concrete slab at the park’s boat launch parking lot to secure port-a-johns, which get blown over by the wind from the lake.
The council approved a total of $6,118 for the repair of two sidewalks on Main Street. The amount represents 50% of the total, with the other half provided by the owners.
During public input, objections were raised about a “mess” on a West Street property. Council President Doug Ruch answered Town Marshal Derek Kreider is aware of the situation.
Further objections were raised about Beer and Jessop Amusements’ rides along SR 15. “It’s not secure,” noted resident Jay Urbin. Ruch responded the issue falls under county jurisdiction, adding the trailers are allowable, but anything “with lettering or identification of a business can’t be there.”
Urbin also called on drivers to slow down on Catherine Street during school hours. “I’m afraid someone is going to get hit,” he commented. Kreider said he would “get a car over there” during school pick-up times.
During police reports, Kreider informed the council a new sound ordinance has been written, though it has not yet been put into effect. To meet the scientific language therein, the department purchased a decibel meter.
Kreider also reported the cost of in-car video stood at $16,746, with an additional $19,052 needed for body cameras. He hopes to obtain a federal grant for first-time departments, which he will submit by May 20. Kreider is also exploring options for data storage for the video, which could run as much as $5,760 per year for cloud storage.
Finally, Kreider said his department would have a full complement of 12 officers on duty for Milford Fest, May 25.