By Michael Schaffer - Managing editor
The Centerville City Council voted 5-0 Monday night to allow the Iowa Department of Natural Resources to conduct an aerial survey of the deer population in the city.
The city will pay half of the $1,500 cost with the DNR paying the other half.
An aerial survey ensures an accurate count of deer in the city and will be used to determine if a bow hunt inside the city limits is needed to combat what some have called a deer population problem.
"It would be a benchmark count so we know what our resident deer herd is," Councilman Rob Lind said. "We'll have a much better idea for, if we should go ahead with an in-city archery hunt."
Mayor Marsha Mitchell said a DNR aerial survey is not required in order for a community to do a bow hunt. But the survey gives communities a better understanding of what needs to be done.
One Centerville resident who attended the meeting spoke and cited a Des Moines Register article he said shows where the deer population in Iowa was in decline.
Mayor Mitchell acknowledged to Jim Senior she too had read that story.
The city presented a humanitarian award to street department employee Tom Carson for his assistance early in the morning of Feb. 3. Carson while plowing snow found a disoriented citizen who was outside in the extreme cold and snow with little clothing on following a fire in his house.
"Tom was able to get him in his truck and kind of got him warmed up and even gave him his coat," Police Chief Tom Demry said prior to presenting the award. "And he also noticed the smoke coming from the house and notified the fire department."
Demry said it was his belief the man would not have survived had Carson not found him.
In other action:
• The city will hold a public hearing for the fiscal year 2011-2012 budget at the next scheduled council meeting at 5:30 p.m. March 7 at City Hall.
• The council decided to allow Pastor Brad Dittmer the use of City Park Saturday, April 16 to hold an Easter egg hunt. Dittmer said nine-10,000 plastic eggs will be spread about the park.
• The council accepted the resignation of Michelle Moore from the Airport Commission and appointed Pete Lind to fill the vacancy on the Library Board following the resignation of Janet Johnson.
• The council voted 5-0 to waive $251.25 in sewer charges for a rental property at 412 N. 10th St. for the month of December. The council waived the sewer charge after they learned the property had a water break in the basement but the water was pumped out and did not exit the building through the sewer.
• The council voted 5-0 to begin negotiating an engineering services agreement with Hall Engineering for infrastructure improvements to East State Street, West State Street and 10th Street.
Not on the agenda but Street Department Superintendent Ron Creagan talked briefly about the condition of alleys and roads in the city. Now that the frost has come out, alleys are in terrible condition and potholes are starting to show up in city roads.
Creagan asked residents to refrain from using alleys.
"The more travel we have in the alleys the worse condition they're going to get in," Creagan said. "And if they get to bad, our only option at this time is going to be to close the alleys. We already closed one the other day."