Meeting: Birdseye Council

The Birdseye Town Council met Thursday and:

”¢ Agreed with the Dubois County Contractual Public Library Board that Birdseye will be the government entity applying to the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs for a planning grant of up to $15,000 to study whether to continue existing library operations, expand the branch library at 100 State Road 145 or build a new library. Board President Kathy Tretter said the contractual library board would pay a $3,500 local match, which would cover the Indiana 15 Regional Planning Commission’s work administering a grant. The first step in the process is sending a letter of intent to the state, said Indiana 15 Executive Director Lisa Gehlhausen. A public hearing would be held prior to an actual application going in, Gehlhausen said, and a second public hearing would be held to present findings. Tretter said the Birdseye branch has been a “raging success” since opening last June. It has “programs galore” now and the contractual board wants to expand its hours, she said. Four new computers are also on the way. “The computer usage is, like, through roof over there,” Tretter said.

Ӣ Decided to begin searching for an engineering firm to design needed water system upgrades to pipes not addressed since the late 1960s. Once preliminary engineering is done, the town could apply next spring for up to $500,000 in Community Focus Fund money, according to Gehlhausen. A CFF grant would require a 10 percent local match. Recent repairs forced officials to turn off the water twice in the town during the last month.

”¢ Began drawing from a $162,000 disaster recovery grant from the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs to pay invoices for nearly complete demolition and debris removal at the abandoned old school and gymnasium that once stood at West Third Street. The added cost of dealing with a couple of unforeseen things — extra footers in the ground and brick debris uncovered in a 20-by-20 cellar area — led the council to approve change orders and seek a modification to increase the $70,000 contract with Knies Construction to $94,688. Midwestern Engineers, Loogootee, is seeking an increase from $4,000 to $5,000 to cover additional inspection services. Once the state approves the modifications, Gehlhausen indicated, there will be about 10 days more work required at the former school site.

Ӣ Received an update on a townwide yard sale set for Friday and Saturday, May 3 and 4, from organizer Bonnie Hackmann, a resident who is also a staff writer for the Ferdinand News.
Hackmann said yard sale ads can be dropped off at Birdseye General Store, 207 Ingle St. The $6 ads will allow for 20 words and will be published in the Ferdinand News and Spencer County Leader. All of the town’s ads will appear on a single page and will be accompanied by a Birdseye map. “We’re hoping it really turns out big,” Hackmann said.

Ӣ Learned the park board would like to have wireless Internet access, or wi-fi, available at the 41 E. State Road 64 park in the future. Options to make that happen will be researched, according to board member Brett Eckert.

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