Mt Pleasant News
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Neighbors Growing Together | Dec 10, 2016

Hangars, taxi lanes dominate city’s five-year airport plan

Nov 23, 2016

BY BROOKS TAYLOR

Mt. Pleasant News

If you want the funding, you have to complete the paperwork.

Mt. Pleasant, which has received millions of dollars in grants over the last decades, will be submitting its five-year airport capital improvement plan to the Iowa Department of Transportation following council approval Tuesday.

The plan must be submitted for the city to qualify for federal and state funding on the projects. Many of the projects receive 90-percent funding from the Federal Aviation Agency.

Mt. Pleasant completes most of the projects listed in the plan. The plan being submitted includes the following improvements to the airport: construction of a four-unit hangar (first phase); taxi-lane extension; taxi-lane extension for a 10-unit hangar; expansion of a four-unit hangar to 10 units (phase two); taxi-lane extension for the corporate box hangar; construction of a corporate box hangar; and a terminal area security fence. The projects come to a combined cost of just over $2 million.

“The Federal Aviation Agency’s (FAA) main priority is safety,” noted City Administrator Brent Schleisman. “The FAA and Iowa Department of Transportation are more apt to help us on safety measures.”

Council members approved the sale of property at 205 N. Pine St., following a public hearing on the sale, which drew no verbal or written remarks. The city acquired the property several years ago and spent $5,000 to demolish the deteriorating structure on the property.

Last year, Southeast Iowa Housing Inc., a component of the Southeast Iowa Regional Planning Commission announced that it would build a single-family spec house on the property. The house was the first funded by Southeast Iowa Housing, but since that time, the agency is in the process of building houses in Burlington and Wapello.

The city owned the lot and agreed upon the sale of the property, Southeast Iowa Housing would pay the city $5,000 for the lot.

Schleisman, who is president of the Southeast Iowa Regional Planning Commission Board of Directors, likes the program and said it benefits the city. “We will do anything we can to add housing in the city.”

A first reading of an ordinance granting partial industrial tax abatement for the expansion of Hearth and Home was passed by the council. Under terms of the abatement, property taxes on the value of the new construction will be abated 75 percent the first year; 60 percent the second year; 45 percent for the third year; 30 percent for the fourth year; and 15 percent for the fifth year. The tax abatement also qualifies as the city’s match for a state grant Hearth and Home is applying for.

The second reading of a rezoning request of property at 104 S. Iris St., from B-4 (highway commercial district) to B-3 (general retail and service commercial district) gained approval from the council. Paul and Barbara Anderson, who own a commercial business on the property, are requesting the zoning change so living quarters can be added to the site.

A 28E agreement between the city and county for reconstruction work on Winfield Avenue between the Highway 218 overpass and Grand Avenue was approved. Reconstruction will consist of a new concrete surface on the street and curb and gutter from Grand Avenue to Iris Street. The new concrete extending from Iris Street to the overpass, which is the county’s share of the project, will not include curb and gutter.

Under terms of the concrete, the county will pay 60 percent of the construction with the city picking up the remaining 40 percent. The two entities will evenly divide the cost of the construction plans and the county will pick up 100 percent of the inspection costs. The agreement has not yet been approved by the county board of supervisors.

Approval was given to the purchase of three pumps and hardware for the wastewater treatment plan on the south side of the city. Cost of the pumps and hardware is approximately $105,000.

“They (pumps) are still pumping, but we need to get these ordered,” Schleisman said. “It has been a slow process with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) but after pleading with them, they finally gave us approval.”

Councilman Kent White found the IDNR’s actions perplexing since the agency is requiring the city to update the pumps.

Finally, the city granted Main Street Mt. Pleasant to have an ice-skating rink Dec. 9-11 at the corner of Jefferson and Monroe streets as part of Main Street’s holiday promotion.

Council members will meet again in regular session Wednesday, Dec. 14, at 5:30 p.m., at City Hall.

 

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