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A grateful Culver Town Council bid a fond farewell to Town Manager Michael Doss last week, as he prepared to leave Culver for his native West Virginia immediately following the April 26 meeting.
Doss told the Council and audience, â€śI canâ€™t say how much this town has meant to me over the last couple of years, personally and professionally.â€ť
Noting Culver residents and Council members were â€śvery welcoming to meâ€ť when he first arrived in Culver, Doss praised the Council and Town Clerk, among others.
â€śEverybody has a really good head on their shoulders, and we made some really good strides here. Iâ€™ve learned something from you and I think youâ€™ve learned something from me. I will take that with me. I really appreciate that.â€ť
Just prior to the close of the meeting, Council members took their turns to praise Doss.
â€śItâ€™s hard parting with people,â€ť said Council President Ginny Munroe, â€śbut we canâ€¦celebrate the accomplishments he gave to the town. Heâ€™s raised the standard for the kind of town manager we hire. We have a really tough job ahead of us (replacing him)...we are so proud of what you did in two yearsâ€™ time, and grateful.â€ť
Council member Ed Pinder said he â€śabout criedâ€ť when Doss announced his impending resignation.
â€śIâ€™ve told you before its been enjoyable working on the Council,â€ť he said, â€śbut doing so with Michael was even better.â€ť
Council member Ralph Winters echoed Pinderâ€™s comments, adding, â€śHe taught me a lot -- Iâ€™m going to miss him.â€ť
Member Sally Ricciardi expressed appreciation for Dossâ€™ handling of some of the townâ€™s legal work, among other things. â€śI really appreciate that and wish him all the best,â€ť she said.
Council business included a vote to cease sewer billing to Culverâ€™s Inn by the Lake bed and breakfast in a manner consistent with a hotel or condotel, rather than as similar bed and breakfasts are billed in town.
The vote was a follow-up to the previous meeting, in which Inn owners Nick and Gina Hnatusko challenged the fairness of the billing. Council members noted the Innâ€™s sewer line has a 3/4-inch line and should be billed as similar properties. Besides voting to change the billing, the Council also agreed to reimburse the Gnatuskos for the extra fees charged them since the increased rate took effect last summer.
A resolution was also adopted deeming the observation in Culver of Arbor Day on April 29. Tom Kearns, of Culverâ€™s Tree Commission, told the Council 25 new trees have been ordered for planting in town this year, including redbud, maple, and honey locusts. Several trees have been marked for removal or trimming around Culver, he added, noting not all will be replaced since some are too close together. Planting will likely begin by June, said Patty Stallings of the Commission.
The Council approved a new agreement with the engineering firm handling its downtown streetscape improvement project which will increase the cost of the project from $76,000 to $89,200 (of which the town will pay 20 percent). Winters suggested the Council be â€śextra vigilantâ€ť with the project, noting the move made him â€śquestion the competenceâ€ť of the firm, for not discovering the need for historical compliance and other matters which led to the increased cost.
Passed on final readings was an ordinance to place a four-way stop sign at the corner of South Ohio Street and Hawkins Court, as well as funds for 1,100 square yards of paving (at $8.75 per yard) to complete a strip of paving on South Main Street between Davis Street to just south of Tampa Street, where water and sewer are being extended west for the Garden Court senior living facility being built there.
The Council approved purchase of a parcel of land near Culverâ€™s wastewater facility, from Marshall County at the cost of one dollar. $4,576 was approved for replacement of a backup pump at the Madison Street sewer lift station.
An interim salary was discussed for Street Department head Bob Porter, to help compensate him for the addition of many hours of certification. Munroe said the town receives â€śmany letter of compliment because Bob is who he is in that role. Heâ€™s really been a gift for all of us.â€ť