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DUNKIRK — The Village of Dunkirk only lost four trees in last Friday’s storm.
“Overall, we got through it pretty good,” said Village Administrator Paul Cramer. “…We got through it a lot better than the other small towns around.”
According to Cramer, two trees on Main Street, one on East Patterson Street and one in the park have all either come down or need to come down as a result of the storm.
The village’s ability to weather the storm came in large part as a result of cutting down trees following the large ice storm several years ago, the administrator said.
“I know we hated cutting trees down, but the ones we cut down during the ice storm really helped, or otherwise we’d have been in a mess like everyone else was,” Cramer said.
Also taking wind damage were two transformer poles that broke off. The damage has been cleaned and the village is currently waiting for AEP to come set up new poles.
“Two big transformer poles broke off and pulled off all our new electric and broke it; it’s all broke,” he said. “ That gives power to the water tower, so we’ve got a generator hooked up to the water tower. Our water system was never in jeopardy.”
Some of the fences in that area, Cramer added, have been bent and some advertising signs have been destroyed. The village is currently awaiting a response from the insurance company following attempts to try to contact them.
Cramer thanked the Sheldon Gas Company which helped to get roads clean following the storm. Also thanked were Hank Bailey, Todd Hackworth, Patrick McCoy and the Northern Hardin County Fire Department
“(The fire department) did a real good job with the road being closed for a while and helping with the other hot spots in town where we had wires on the ground,” Cramer said.
The administrator also discussed the village’s new walking path near the park. It has been completed with the exception of needing to fill in the dirt along it.
“I’ve seen a lot of people making use of it,” he said.
One area of concern is that vehicles and a motorcycle have already attempted to drive onto the path. Cramer informed council that signs will be in place stating the use of motor vehicles, golf carts, ATVs, bicycles, skateborads and roller blades are prohibited.
“We’re going to put the real heavy galvinized sign posts maybe three feet off the road right in the center of the paths,” Cramer said.
Added Village Mayor Teresa Cramer, “It’s really sad that you have to put a sign up that says those things.”
As a result it was determined that a set of fines be attached to the appropriate ordinance for driving onto the path, including $250 for the first offense, $500 and a year ban from the park after the second offense, and a $1,000 fine for the third offense.
Another area of concern related to the path is the pile of dirt that currently rests at the park that is being used as a ramp by individuals with dirt bikes. The administrator informed council that he has been approached by four or five contractors about purchasing the dirt and wanted council’s input. Follwing discussion, coucil decided to put the dirt up for bid.
Also going up for bid on July 5 in the commissioner’s office will be the sidewalk project and metal roof for the enclosed shelterhouse.
– Learned a USDA grant of $263,000 was spent on items including a new copier/work station, a laptop computer for the administrator, a payment to the debt reserve, the back-up lift station pump and lagoon sewer work, among other items. Council expressed its feelings about the expenditures and informed village fiscal officer Phyllis Spencer that the next time a grant like that arises, an emergeny meeting should be called so they can give input and help make the decisions on what to spend it on.
– Approved the first reading of an ordinance establishing rates of service for water and sewage services in the village of Dunkirk and repealing all ordinances in conflict. The ordinance includes adjusting the meter, valve and hydrant tampering charge to $100 and the late fees to $16 to be split for water and sewage.
– Was informed the village received a grant of $530 to be used for resin tables and chairs.
– Approved raising village employee Hank Bailey’s pay to $10.50 per hour retroactive to June 18.
– Learned the website, villageofdunkirk.com, is up and running.
By TY THAXTON
Times staff writer