Council Accepts Findings From Election Commissioner On Remonstrance Petition, Table Fence Request

WAYNE – A trio of agenda items took up most of Tuesday night’s regularly scheduled Wayne City Council meeting.

From the council chambers inside City Hall, City Attorney Amy Miller provided the findings from Wayne County Election Commissioner Deb Finn for the remonstrance petition to delay the sale of land for one year being lot 3 southeast addition (old rugby park).

Following a 40-day period allowing the county clerk to review the petition for validity, and after just verifying the signatures, it was determined the goal of 625 was not met. From the seven councilmembers present, all seven voted in favor (one councilmember no present) and accepted the findings.

A total of 625 signatures were needed. Of the 638 submitted, 27 signers were determined not to be registered voters or were not registered at the address listed on the petition or there was possibly forgery. That brought the number down to 611 signers being registered voters.

Remonstrance Petition Report Form

City Administrator, Wes Blecke said TIF meetings have been continuing for R. Perry Construction.

“Planning Commission recommended on Monday night to forward back to council the redevelopment plan,” said Blecke. “So, it will go to council the first part of July and then back to the CRA at the end of July to finalize tax increment financing if it passes those next hurdles.”

A City of Wayne resident, Joe Gubbels (712 Westwood Road) has three sides of his property surrounded by phase II of the trail. During the construction process, a tree damaged his chain-link fence. At the time the price was settled for $200 to be paid but Gubbels was going to be putting in a new fence. Gubbels was requesting more Tuesday evening providing information that he has been affected by the trail and that the City of Wayne should pay 25% not to exceed $1,500 for a six-foot wood panel fence.

Past council stated no money would be provided for fencing but would add hedging or bushes. Councilmembers voted to table the request, according to Blecke.

“Staff is going to go out and measure how much of his side yard he can put a fence in where shrubs wouldn’t be allowed or wouldn’t fit between his property and the trail proper,” Blecke added. “There’s a pretty narrow strip in there.”

A Bluestem Energy Solutions solar energy presentation highlighted the opportunity to allow for local generation. Mayor of Norfolk, Josh Moening works for Bluestem Energy and stated their 8.5-megawatt project will be going online soon.

Wayne Mayor Cale Giese mentioned solar energy bases pricing off peak demand which is in the morning to afternoon.

“You think when things get hot and everybody is running their air conditioners,” Giese mentioned. “That’s when solar energy is going to come in and cut that top of your peak off and get you a lower rate. You’re able to off-set that demand that you have to buy externally from producing your own solar.”

Wayne State College president Marysz Rames also spoke in favor of solar energy as the college is looking at the educational piece of renewable energy.

The current electric contract is through Big Rivers as the City of Wayne will be ending their power purchasing contract in the next few years.

No action was taken during the informational presentation, but Bluestem Energy Solutions found around 20 parcels of land at 17.5 acres where the 2.5 megawatt facility could be installed. A potential price would be the City of Wayne would pay six cents a kill-a-watt for 25 years through Bluestem.

The City of Wayne is peaking between 15 – 16 megawatts (8-10 mw in winter/12-14 mw in summer). The City of Wayne gets a portion (2.3 mw) of their power through a wind farm out of Blue Hill, NE along with some power coming from the Western Area Powered Administration (WAPA) (Hydro dams creating electricity) while the remainder comes from Big Rivers.

With a handful more home games remaining, the Wayne Baseball Association has put in a request to use city barricades to close off Windom Street between north 3rd and south 4th streets just to the west of Hank Overin Field in Wayne during Post 43 American Legion games. Council approved the request which has been made in the past during area and state tournament games.

Jennifer Sievers, Wayne First Impressionist with ALLO Communications gave an update as the Wayne-build is complete and approached the board about utilizing the old Riley’s parking lot (113 S. Main) for their open house. The request was approved for Tuesday, June 21 from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. (set-up at 10 a.m./3 p.m. tear down) where there’ll be free tacos and more information about ALLO.

Councilmembers accepted the bid from Kay Contracting, Inc. for $64,187.97 on the “2022 Golf Course Sewer improvements Project”. This labor only project (City of Wayne supplying the materials) would extend sewer closer to Wayne State College and HWY 15 along with residents at 1701 N HWY 15 whose septic is failing and who have been in city-limits since 1992. Kay Contracting, Inc. would start in mid-July (following Chicken Days) and be completed by September 1.

Closing out the meeting, councilmembers approved an updated interlocal agreement to share law enforcement resources between the City of Wayne and the Board of Trustees of the Nebraska State Colleges (WSC) while Mayor Giese appointed Brandon Mainquist to the LB840 Revolving Loan Fund Review Committee filling the vacancy left by Jim Frank, previous CEO at Providence Medical Center. Other current members include Angela Fredrickson and Galen Wiser.

No action was made during the executive session as council went through their evaluation process for City Administrator Blecke.

The next regularly scheduled Wayne City Council meeting will be on Tuesday, June 21 at 5:30 p.m.


Wes Blecke & Cale Giese 6-8-22 ‘View’