COMMUNICATIONS AND NEWS FROM THE WEEK: August 7th, 2020
Meetings and Announcements:
•The next City Council meeting will be held next Monday, August 10th. We will have an EDA Meeting prior to the City Council meeting. The EDA meeting will begin at 6 pm. There will also be a closed session for part of the EDA meeting. Watch for Mychal Fowlds call in phone numbers for the meetings on Monday.
•There will be a Special Council Meeting Friday, August 14th at 4:00 pm to canvass the primary election results
Here are the updates from various departments below.
Updates from Staff and Council:
LEAD (Leadership, Exploration and Development) Academy Graduation
On Wednesday, we celebrated the graduation of our first class in the LEAD Academy. The graduates include: Emily Burt-McGregor, Shawn Conway, Rich Dawson, Nick Franzen, Derek Fritze, Tammi Hays, Eric Kubat, Gina Kuchenmeister, Brian Micheletti, Joe Rueb, Kevin Schmitz and Molly Wellens. The training topics included- Strengths/Meyer Briggs, Maplewood Government, Candid/Difficult Conversations, Diversity and Changing Demographics, Managing Change and Servant Leadership and High Performing Teams. We will be sending out a survey to the participants to obtain feedback on the training topics. When the participants were asked what they liked the best, one common response is that they liked the connections they made with their co-workers; learning about their work responsibilities and about them personally. We will begin the second cohort in late September.
Here is a link to the Participants presentations: Vimeo Link (57m31s): https://vimeo.com/445360096/68bbe7ae74
Ramsey County has awarded 8 Small Business Relief Fund grants in Maplewood. The list is below. The next round of applications for business relief are due on August 18th. For more information on the Program, click the link:
Ramsey County SBRF- Maplewood Recipients
- Sunset Realty- $10,000.
- Benchwarmer’s Sportswear and Apparel- $10,000.
- Lashia Elderly Care Center, Inc- $10,000.
- Coris Kidz Childcare Inc- $10,000.
- Tanejo Maplewood, LLC- $10,000.
- Pho Lodge LLC- $10,000.
- Debbie Mishler dba Deb’s Hot Dogs- $7,400.
- Groceries and Nepali Kitchen, Inc- $10,000.
PARKS AND RECREATION
Annual Photo Scavenger Hunt
We had a record number of entries for our annual Photo Scavenger Hunt to celebrate National Parks and Recreation Month. People submitted photos of everything from ladybugs to lily pads and this year’s winner was Ananth Shankar (Commissioner with CDRB) with this beautiful photo of Geranium Park. The winner received a Parks and Recreation swag bag along with bragging rights on our Facebook and Twitter pages.
Sanitary Sewer Utility Division
The Sanitary Sewer Utility crew cleans 1/3 of all sanitary sewer mains annually. For preventative maintenance tracking and to meet the City’s strategic goal of cleaning 1/3 of the system annually the sanitary sewer system is divided up into three areas. With this year’s area being a bit smaller than the other two areas (45 miles of sewer versus 55 miles in the other two areas) the preventative maintenance is nearly completed. Having this large portion of annual maintenance completed this early in the year allows the Utility crew to start fall maintenance projects earlier and creates time to complete much needed manhole repairs throughout the city. Additionally, the Utility crew will also be working on a control panel replacement for the city’s largest sanitary lift station at 1035 Lakewood Drive.
The Sanitary Sewer Utility Division has been working with the company BevSo on Rice Street. This is the business that produces dairy products formerly known as Agropur and Schroeder Milk. Their sanitary waste is discharged into a large Maplewood sewer main flowing from the BevSo plant down to the intersection of Rice and Arlington where it enters a Met Council metering station. Due to the milk/cream based products that are discharged into the line, the sewer line builds up with grease in a short period of time. The City checks and monitors the meter station and line twice a week now since there was a sanitary back up in March of 2020. The City and BevSo have been working together to solve this FOG (Fats Oils and Grease) issue. BevSo has agreed to clean and inspect the City’s sanitary system from their property to the meter station three times a year. This was previously completed once every two years. The Sanitary Sewer Utility crew will be working with the BevSo contractor to get this project completed. The first cleaning is anticipated to take three to five days and should be completed the week of August 17th, 2020.
Fleet/Vehicle Equipment Maintenance Division
The Fleet maintenance crew consists of three full time heavy equipment mechanics. They are responsible for maintaining 120 Public Works vehicles/equipment along with many of the Police and Fire vehicles/equipment. In addition to all the preventative maintenance required for the vehicles and equipment they respond daily to miscellaneous break downs in the field. The mechanics are an integral part of keeping all of the divisions in Public Works functioning each day.
Part of the Fleet Division includes our fuel system and eight underground storage tanks. We operate five 600 gallon oil tanks, one 1,000 gallon waste oil tank, one 10,000 gallon diesel tank, and one 10,000 gallon gasoline tank. These systems are electronically monitored daily and have to be physically inspected monthly. The fuel system is used by all vehicle operations in the City. As some are aware the gasoline pumps were out of service for a period of time last month. The mechanics worked with the fuel contractor and had the gasoline pumps repaired in a very timely manner.
The mechanics also play a role in helping out other divisions and departments meet their goals. When another person and/or piece of equipment is needed for another department, they are always willing to help. A big thank you to this crew for all their hard work which allows other divisions to serve our residents.
These are the reports for this week. As always, please call if I can address any questions or concerns. I hope that you have a great weekend. Thank you. MC