Residents living on and near Major Lake Drive have a desire to be proactive rather than reactive when it comes to the speeding that goes on in their neighborhood. J.R. and Shawna Bettelyoun, representing those who live on that road, spoke to the city council during the public comment portion of the meeting on Monday night asking for ideas to curb the speed of motorists using the Sunset Creek Estates development as a cut-across from Deerfield Road to East Main Street, Highway 16/385. The speed limit is 20 mph through the development.
“I was outside working one day between about 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. and counted nine cars going at least 35-40 mph.,” said J.R.
Shawna said she is often up by 4:30 a.m. walking her dogs and people are already speeding through the neighborhood. She said there are children and pets and this could really become a safety issue. J.R. said the leading cause of death for children under the age of 14 is accidents.
Speed bumps have been discussed but that does not seem to be a desirable solution due to the problems they create for snow-plowing during the winter months. Deputies patrol the area but they are stretched pretty thin according to Bettelyoun, making it difficult to adequately get on top of the problem. His suggestion is installing two stop signs along Major Lake Drive.
Councilman Jim Peterson, owner of Sunset Creek Estates development, said last year additional 20 mph signs were put up, but it has not changed the situation. Councilman Jason Gillaspie said the entire ty of Major Lake Drive needs to be examined, not just the areas through the development. Brett McMacken, city administrator, said the issue should be discussed and a recommendation given to the planning and zoning commission for further discussion.
Law enforcement reported on a smelly issue in Hill City that is being dealt with. The state trapper was called in to take care of a skunk problem, and according to Deputies Randy Harkens and Doug Kimball, in a 12-hour period, he trapped five skunks. They were not sure if this is the end to the problem or if continued trapping will take place. They also reported to the council that the Rally was fairly calm with only three arrests.
The only action item on the agenda for Monday night was the first reading of the 2018 Hill City Budget Appropriation. McMacken read the entire document, and summary of revenue and expenditures is as follows: Expected revenue in the General Fund is General Revenue, $1,515,470.18; Cemetery, $2,750; Library, $27,631. Projected General Fund expenditures are as follows: BID Board, $4,000; Board, Council or Commission, $41,276.77; City Administrator, $105,497; Finance, $151,358.83; Insurance, $48,000; Planning Commission, $15,063.50; General Government Buildings, $112,592.21; Law Enforcement, $118,809; Fire Department, $600; Development Services, $66,993.75; Highway and Streets, $308,466.65; Cemetery, $16,858.37; Ambulance, $16,000; Boys and Girls Club, $15,000; Parks, $152,002.17; Library, $125,388.93; Miscellaneous, $2,500; for a total of $1,350,407.18.
Revenue and expenditures for Triple B are expected to be $234,000; Water Fund, $300,359.15 and Sewer, $364,452.63. The second reading of the budget is scheduled for the next council meeting on Monday, Aug. 28.