A number of capital equipment has been ordered and received, the largest being the new vacuum/sweeper truck which was delivered last week. This item alone has an interesting story that needs to be told. When I visited the DPW garage to view the new vacuum/sweeper truck, representatives from Fredrickson Supply came up to me to say thank you to the city and to also share an observation. The observation they shared was this: In all their travels around the state, they rarely, rarely see a DPW garage as clean and as organized as the City of Coopersville’s. They said the trucks and loaders are clean, the workshop is spotless, the floor is free from dirt, and more of the same. They continued commenting on how much the crew cares and takes ownership of the city and that can be seen in the physical condition of the DPW site and the city at large.
I’m sharing this with you as another example on the caliber of our employees. It has taken time to assemble this group, but we have a special team of individuals that bring more than just skill sets and talent; they bring commitment and they bring a personal desire to do the best they can because they care. I felt very proud of these men especially when visitors from outside of the city, and without prompting, share their thoughts. Nicely done gentlemen!
Monday night, we have the usual bills that need to be paid. We also have a recommendation from the Planning Commission regarding the city’s Master Plan. We’ll also start discussions on goal setting as mentioned by the Mayor at the July 11 council meeting. We might even have a special visitation by a certain red and white vac/sweeper truck Monday night. Continue to enjoy these precious days of summer and wherever your travels take you, be safe out there.
Wastewater Treatment Plant
The spare blower motor has arrived, finally. I believe it came from Brazil. We will have this motor tested and “tuned in” before we install. Our goal is to have four functional motors be available for the three blowers. Aeration is a critical and extremely important function in processing wastewater. Our goal is to provide reliable redundancy in the aeration treatment side of the WWTP and to accomplish this goal sooner than later. I will keep you updated on progress made.
Water Project Phase I
I stated in the last memo that we would have something for council in terms of information on bonding for the July 25th council meeting. I’m sorry, but I have to push that out again another two weeks as other more pressing issues moved up the priority list. As always I urge everyone on council to contact me if have questions or would like to provide comments regarding this project.
Ottawa County Technology Collaborative
Jonathan Seyferth and Anisa Williams have recently started attending a group that meets to discuss ways of collaborating for cost savings on technology and IT services such as hardware purchases, phone systems, off site data storage and other numerous and similar items. The group consists of a few local governments such as Grand Haven, Zeeland, Holland Township, Ottawa County, and the Ottawa County Central Dispatch and others. Coopersville is now a part of this group and our goal is to find ways to reduce technology costs and partner with others when appropriate and feasible.
National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES)
Significant progress has been made for our new NPDES permit from the MDEQ. As has been stated recently, the city is requesting a new permit that will allow us a couple of options to upgrade the existing WWTP. The latest draft was sent us yesterday. We need to respond before August 3 with any comments or proposed changes. For the record, I want to compliment the MDEQ for their timeliness and cooperative spirit in assisting the City of Coopersville in this latest phase of upgrading the WWTP. As always, I will keep you informed of future progress.
Strategic Planning – A Reminder
For the last few months, the below text was included in your packets. These words still remain as a reminder of future tasks we as a group will ultimately embrace. Some areas you may want to begin thinking about, but certainly not limited to, are:
b.Future recreation facilities
c.Utilization of Deer Creek watershed that runs through the city
d.Future of utility expansion
e.Issues of aesthetics for new construction, parks, and gateways into the city
g.Long-term vision for sidewalk maintenance and new construction
i.Road Maintenance and Reconstruction Policy
The arrival of our Assistant City Manager Jonathan Seyferth has allowed more attention and time to revise the City’s Master Plan (Comprehensive Plan). I would like to begin exercises in strategic planning from the City Council as to how we want to control the city’s future. Yes, the Planning Commission does extensive work and drafts the Master Plan, and will perform professionally in that task. But the City Council must take action on the approval/disapproval of that plan. According to the ICMA (International City/County Management Association) and Gerald L. Gordon PHD, strategic planning is:
“…a means of understanding change, forecasting change, and setting a course of action to manage the expected implications of change. Even in the most negative situations in the life of a community, strategic planning is a positive means of moving forward.”
City Council must begin a conversation of where you want the community to grow and what our future will look like in the next five, ten, and twenty-five years. More information will come in the next few months.