NEW BREMEN – The New Bremen/German Township Fire Department was approved to purchase a new fire truck after a vote by the New Bremen Council at its meeting Monday night, Aug. 9. Also, New Bremen is set to expand its size with the annexation of three properties.
Fire Chief Dan Voress told council that the estimated cost for Pierce Enforcer Top Mount Pumper would be $804,337.18 and would replace a 1991 vehicle which had failed its pressure test and had been taken out of service. The township and the village agreed to share the cost of putting 50% down to order the new truck and 50% on delivery. The old unit will be sold.
Council also approved the first reading of an ordinance to annex three properties on state Route 66 south of town between Dollar General and the Minster Bank. The properties are the Schnelle 2.937 acres, the Sharp 1.650 acres and the Wissman 2.920 acres.
In other land matters, council voted to seek bids from farmers who may want to rent the 130 acres of the former Komminsk property east of town. More information can be found on the village website. Further, ads will be placed in local papers in the next week or so.
In his report to council, Mayor Bob Parker said Indiana-based company Schurz Communications has entered in an agreement to purchase fiber provider The New Knoxville Telephone Company, also known as NKTelco. A press release from Schurz said NKTelco will continue to be managed locally with the same staff. The purchase is not complete until they get regulatory approval.
Parker also suggested the village consider hosting a monthly event to encourage people to come to the downtown parks. Similar to the St. Marys First Fridays, the event would possibly be held on Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m. and could involve food trucks, beverage sales by local wineries and craft brewers, arts and crafts and music.
Parker and council agreed that Trick or Treat night will be held on Halloween night, Oct. 31. The event will start with a parade at 1 p.m., followed by Cider Time at 1:30 p.m., then trick or treat through the town between 3:30 and 5:30 p.m.
Village Administrator Brent Richter said the construction on the new bike path will begin this week. He said the plan was to prepare the bed of the path so that they could use the grindings from the new resurfacing project set to begin next week.
Richter also said the EPA had extended from 36 months to 72 months the time that the village has to find ways to remediate chemicals coming from their wastewater treatment plant.
Council also approved several new resolutions to accept new funding to the village. Most significant was the establishment of the American Rescue Plan Fund. Amy Speelman, fiscal officer, said they can expect to receive $310,377.39 over two years. The money is to be mostly used for infrastructure projects and must be spent by Dec. 31, 2024. They also approved a fund for the National Opioid Settlement agreement. Speelman said they had applied for the funding but did not know if they will qualify. Another resolution was to set up a Sewer Capital Fund for future expenditures and a fund to be set up for special revenues for asset forfeiture.
A second reading was approved for CRA agreement with Mescher Properties for a future cold storage unit at the industrial park. Council also approved some changes to the zoning regulations.
Council than adjourned to executive session to discuss property. No action was taken when they returned to open session.
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.