By Jean Doran Matua, Editor
The City of Kimball has a new, full-time clerk: Nicole Pilarski. Chris Jeppesen will continue as the part-time deputy clerk. Eileen Thomes has served as a temporary clerk and is now training Pilarski; it is anticipated that Thomes will stay on part-time, as needed, for up to about five hours a week.
Police Chief Jim Frilstad announced the hiring of a part-time police officer, Ashley Capes, at the council meeting Monday night, Dec. 7. Capes received her criminal justice AES degree at Rasmussen College, and completed her law enforcement training at Central Lakes College through Hibbing Community College. Capes is a 2005 graduate of KAHS, and is the daughter of Terry and Bonnie Capes. Capes will complete the necessary evaluations and hands-on training while on the job in Kimball before she can go solo. No work hours for the Kimball police department are expected to be added; Capes will fill in shifts where others are not available. The current roster includes two full-time officers (Jim Frilstad and Chris Langness) and three part-time officers.
Much of Monday's four-and-a-half-hour council meeting was taken up with the 2010 city budget. Anticipating a cut in LGA (local government aid) by the governor, and facing a proposed budget that was 12.65 percent higher than the 2009 budget, the council worked hard to curb anticipated spending next year.
The council certified the 2010 budget for $369,990 in 2010, a mere 1.46 percent above this year's budget.
One of the ways the council will save money next year is to meet less frequently. Instead of twice monthly, council meetings will alternate between once and twice a month. (They will meet twice in January, once in February, twice in March, and so on.) This will reduce cost for personnel, including council members.
In another matter, it was announced that Knife River has agreed to replace sidewalks and aprons along Linden Avenue and elsewhere in Kimball that were laid a year ago with a bad batch of concrete. The offer is contingent on Knife River being released from warranty on other materials used by them in Kimball projects. The replacement work would carry the customary warranty.
Clearwater River Watershed District is looking into grants and projects to help the city of Kimball with stormwater runoff. The two entities will meet often to coordinate goals and strategies.