No citizens attended a public hearing held during the Manawa Common Council meeting on Monday, Sept. 15.
The council held the hearing to give citizens a chance to voice their opinion on changing property zoning on the city’s north side from agriculture to planned commercial.
The lots in question are owned by Peter and Mary Griffin, William Levezow, and the city of Manawa.
Although council members have heard objections to the proposed zoning change, the people with those objections did not attend the public hearing.
“This is the time and place for the public to voice their opinion,” said Mayor John Smith. “If they don’t come and voice their opinion, the city will do what they planned to do.”
According to Smith, the city of Manawa purchased the property several years ago with the intent of building on it.
“If we don’t plan for growth, we have no future,” Smith said.
After the public hearing was adjourned and the council meeting reconvened, the council adopted a resolution granting the zoning change.
In other business, the council approved the purchase of a new heating system for the Manawa Municipal Building.
According to Frank Jaeger, director of public works, both boilers are shot and the pump and tank are broken.
The cost to replace the two boilers is about $16,970.
“We have no choice,” Jaeger told the council.
He said the pump can be repaired for about $2,800, but recommended purchasing a new tank for about $600.
The cost of the tank could be covered by the Focus On Energy rebate of about $800.
The city should see 35 percent to 50 percent energy savings with the new boilers.
Jaeger said the heating system is checked regularly, but there was no way to detect this type of breakdown.
The council agreed to halt a motel feasibility study contract.
According to Smith, building a new motel in Manawa depended on Sturm Foods utilizing it.
“They don’t have as many visitors as we think they do,” Smith said. “It was tough to learn that answer and tougher to come tell (the council) this.”
Jaeger reported that the County Highway B project is progressing and blacktopping should begin within a week, with landscaping and top coating to follow.
The council discussed traffic problems on County Yard Road, noting this road is located within the town of Little Wolf.
Other approvals by the council included:
• Trick-or-treat hours from 5-7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 31.
• Procurement policy required for a $301,415 Community Development Block Grant for the Second Street public facilities project.
• Request by Manawa Rural Fire Department to close Sandy Lane between Pine Street and West Howard Street for hose testing every third Monday of September until further notice.