HARRISON – In Mayor Dan Sullivan’s Aug. 7 report to Council, he noted the passing of Ken Hills, whom he described as a major force in the Harrison-Leota Snow Riders snowmobile club. Sullivan also advised care along Oak Street at the post office, as new people coming to town to frequent the new business in the former bank building may not realize it’s a one-way street, and he’s had reports of people going the wrong way.
After adoption of the July 24 Council meeting minutes and the bills of Aug. 7, attention moved to the Visitors portion of the agenda. Visitors included a local group of avid pickleball players, many of whom are “snowbirds.” They sought support for their sport from Council and suggested the installation of a pickleball court in Harrison City Park. They informed that pickleball is the fastest growing sport in America and has landed in Harrison.
It was noted the group has more than 50 active members who usually play on Hayes Township’s courts, and on any given day they will see 18-20 players participating. As the two courts there accommodate only eight people, many are left sitting out awaiting their turn. Their solution has been to shorten the game length, but that hasn’t solved the root problem of courts shortage.
The group has offered free lessons to beginners, including certified instructors who came from Mount Pleasant to give lessons. People were also expected the following week to give lessons for beginners and intermediate players. It was said interested people had come from Lake, Farwell, Lake George, Clare and Midland.
Essentially, pickleball is played on a half-tennis court, and Council was informed that the cracked/broken asphalt at the City Park is unsafe and ruins the balls. The group’s goal of the evening was to request the City resurface its tennis courts, as well as consider the possibility of indoor courts.
Justin Cavanaugh, city manager/clerk, informed that a park renovation grant plan which had been developed earlier in the year had included pickleball courts, although that portion of the grant had been weeded out in favor of more ADA compliant elements. He said pickleball “is on the radar” but that surfacing alone would cost $80,000 which was what was “standing in the way.” Cavanaugh urged pursuit of community fundraisers as community support for a project is always a plus for grant consideration.
Cavanaugh informed of a Zoning Plan update survey which will be sent to residents, the goal for which is 5% participation. A hard copy of the survey will be available at City Hall, as well as posted on the city’s website along with links on social media. He expected the surveys to be ready for distribution at Street Fair.
Fire Chief Chris Damvelt reported 242 runs year-to-date, adding that other than one house fire the previous week and an abundance of vehicle accidents, things have been quiet.
Old Business included the second reading of Ordinance No 2023-04, Hazardous Material Spill Cost Recovery, the goal of which is “to ensure that the City of Harrison can recover costs associated with responding to hazardous material incidents, thereby protecting the City's resources and residents' well-being.” The ordinance was approved unanimously.
Under New Business, Council moved to:
-Adopt Resolution No. 2023-11, approving the sale of the lot at the corner of Fifth and Oak streets with Harrison Realty.
-Adopt Resolution No. 2023-12, approving Mid Year Budget Adjustments
-Approve the expenditure of $5,849 with I-Deal for maintenance sealcoating of the City Hall and DPW parking lots.
Council meets next at 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 21st Harrison City Hall, 2105 Sullivan Drive.
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