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In March 17th Salmon City Council Roundtable discussions Councilman Jim Baker reported on Urban Renewal and Lemhi County Economic Development Association (LCEDA) board meetings he has attended.

He said the Urban Renewal Board has officially declared the south end of the lot across from City Hall a public parking area. The area is south of the Bear statue and west of the Century Tel building. Baker said the board approved paying half of the concrete costs for the upcoming sidewalk project on its property and it turned down a request to place equipment on the front part of the lot.

At the LCEDA Board meeting Baker learned one of the Salmon Valley Business and Innovation Center’s anchor tenants, Channel Blend, has moved out of the center and on to Idaho Falls. He said another telemarketing firm has taken its place however it is has only half as many employees. Baker said that next time the city is asked to support LCEDA’s professional program he would like to see an itemized report on numbers of people employed at the center and the amount of dollars generated.

Councilman Ken Gutzman said he has been going through his personal tax records and found that in 2004, city residents paid $1.73 compared to every $1.00 paid by county residents. In 2009 city residents were paying $2.10 for every $1.00 paid by county residents. Gutzman said, “Something has inflated over five years, 37 percent…and there will be further investigation as to why.”

A constituent’s tree removal request brought to the council by Jim Kluesner will be relayed to the city’s Public Works Department. The tree is at the end of Copper Street and is in a city right of way.

Mayor John Miller announced that the 2010 Census questionnaires have arrived and are being delivered by mail. He urged everyone to fill out the short, ten question form and return it in the envelope provided, as soon as possible.

During the Public Comment portion of the council meeting Jim Sustaire said he has been a resident of Augusta Avenue for 31 years. The street was a dirt road when he first moved there. Seventeen years ago it was upgraded to a chip seal surface but nothing has been done to it since. He said he has difficulty understanding why the city approves using city employees, supplies and materials to do new projects when, “…you won’t even take care of my street.” Mayor John Miller said he will talk with Public Works Superintendent Mickey Verbeck. Gutzman told Sustaire that street paving is a priority on the list of this year’s public works projects along with replacement of water lines. He said he will present the Augusta Avenue comments at the next Public Works and Safety Committee meeting which is scheduled for April 14 at 4:45PM in the Salmon Valley Center meeting room.

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