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ORTONVILLE SCHOOL WELCOMES FIVE NEW TEACHERS for the 2016-2017 school year. Pictured in front, left to right, are Nicole Homan (4th grade) and Kylene Nelson (Kindergarten). Back row, left to right, are Bob Ross (Health, PE and Head Football Coach), Tom Walsh (Industrial Technology) and Jason Blanshan (junior high and 9th grade Social Studies).

Five file for school board, six for city council and mayor

Filing period for candidates of the Ortonville School Board and Ortonville City Council ended on Tuesday, Aug. 16.

School board candidates whose terms end on Jan. 1, 2017 include Mike Hamson, Kathi Thymian and James Nelson. These three seats will be for a four-year term. Candidates who have filed for these positions include Kathi Thymian, James Nelson, Ashton Conroy, Jessica Larson and Brett Kaye.

City council members whose terms end on Jan. 1, 2017 include Mayor Steve Berkner and council members Mel Reinke, Kim Sykora and Jim Hasslen. Candidates filing for these seats are for a four-year term.

Filing for the office of Mayor are Steve Berkner and Gene Hausauer. Candidates filing for a seat on the city council include Mel Reinke, Kim Sykora, Jake Dorry and Dustin Roggenbuck.

The general election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 8.

Council approves engineering report on selected city streets

The Ortonville City Council approved the hiring of Apex Engineering to do preliminary engineering reports for various streets and the county courthouse alley retaining wall at their regular meeting on Monday, Aug. 15.

The proposed streets that will be included in this report include:

• Jefferson Avenue from Wood Street to 5th Street NW.

• Wood Street from Jefferson Avenue to Madison Avenue.

• Pacific Avenue from 2nd Street NW to 4th Street NW.

• South Minnesota Street from 3rd Street SE to 2nd Street SE.

• Alley from Jackson Avenue to Lincoln Avenue behind the Big Stone County Courthouse.

The preliminary report will be to make improvements to the sanitary sewer collection system, water distribution system, storm sewer collection system, street, curb and gutter, sidewalk, retaining walls, and adjoining driveways, and to assess the benefited property for all or a portion of the cost of the improvement, pursuant to Minnesota Statues, Chapter 429.

Apex Enginnering will report back to the council with all convienent speed, advising the board in the report as to whether the proposed improvement is necessary, cost-effective and feasible, and whether it should be made as proposed or in common with some other improvement, and the estimated cost of the improvements as recommended.

Bob Schlieman of Apex Engineering also discussed some areas of sidewalk within the downtown district that should be considered for upgrading and that an inspection of the water tower that will be completed this fall to determine its condition and need for upgrading.

Council member Mike Dorry asked why there have been no crosswalk markers put on Main Street. Kent Novak of the City reported that many of the markers had been damaged by motorists. The markers have been used to alert motorists that pedestrians have the right of way in the crosswalks on marked areas across Main Street.

A motion was made by Dorry and passed to  spend up to and not exceeding $1,000 to purchase four crosswalk markers.

In other business, the council approved authorizing payment to Big Stone County of $1,000 for additional drainage near the Archery Range.

Council members approved the second reading of of a Ordinance ordering installation of stop signs near Fairway View. They also approved the second reading for the sale of property formerly owned by Royal Flush located near Pro Auto.

The next meeting of the Ortonville City Council will be on Tuesday, Sept. 6, at 5 p.m. in the Media Center of the Ortonville Library.

Coaching, Art contracts approved by school board

The board approved three football contracts for the upcoming season at their regular meeting on Monday, Aug. 15.

Kole Mastel will serve as an assistant varsity coach, Nolan Lind as ninth grade coach and Patrick Eustice as junior high coach. With the approval of these contracts, all the fall sports teams are now covered.

An art contract with the Wheaton School District was approved. Ortonville and Wheaton Schools will continue to share an art instructor as in previous years.

The board approved the resignation of Carin Schmitz as cook and thanked her for her service to the Ortonville School. The board then revised the contract of Mary Karels, moving her into the cook’s position.

The board approved the Student, Activities and Teacher Handbooks, with noted changes for the 2016-2017 school year.

Changes to the student handbook included:

• students who earn a Gold Card will be able to use the card for a free pass to co-curricular ativities.

• two unexcused tardies are allowed each semester.

• when a student arrives 10 minutes late for class it shall constitute an unexcused tardy.

Changes were also made for graduation honors. Superior honors will range from 3.8 and above, high honors from 3.5-3.8 and honors from 3.2-3.5. Valedictorian and Salutatorian will be the #1 and #2 students with the highest GPA.

In the Activities Handbook, the changes include the Activities Director compiling a list of all F and Incomplete grades starting in the third week of each quarter. Also, upon being released from class, students are not allowed to leave school grounds.

Superintendent Jeff Taylor reported on the work done at the Ortonville School during he summer. He stated that the yearly waxing floors, painting, cleaning carpets and getting the building ready for the new school year keeps the staff busy for most of the summer. Major projects this summer were: Karr Tuckpointing completed work on the gym, skylights and middle portion of the building; new scoreboards were installed by Daktronics; carpet replacement in two elementary classrooms and baseboard molding replaced in the gym/locker room areas.

In other business, the council approved a resolution and notice of general election to elect three school board members in the November election. They then approved a resolution and notice of special election for the November Referendum vote.

Board members discussed the referendum election. Superintendent Jeff Taylor asked the board to consider any changes they thought may be needed for the brochure that will be sent to voters in the school district. Organizational meetings will be held to inform the voters about the referendum in the upcoming weeks.

The next meeting of the Ortonville School Board will be held on Monday, Sept. 19 at 7 p.m. in the Library.

Lindsay Plathe
The Ortonville Independent banner
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