NICHOLS, Iowa–At the March 11 Nichols City Council meeting, the Council approved the City’s fiscal year 2022 budget. Of particular interest, the City approved the West Liberty Public Library as their City’s Library for the next year. After investigating the cost to switch to Musser Public Library, the Columbus Junction Public Library, or the Lone Tree Community Library, they concluded that the West Liberty Public Library still offered the best value for citizens. They also negotiated the annual rate to $8 per capita down from $12 per capita.
Giving an update on the Community Development Block Grant, secretary and treasurer Aeneas Schmitz shared that 137 out of 143 households had responded to the survey, giving them an approximate 95% response rate. Of those responses, 54% qualified as low or moderate income, allowing the City to apply for the grant. Schmitz reported that he will contact the representative from V&K and begin working on the grant application.
During the public forum, resident Cherie Howes shared her concerns about parking near intersections on Ijem Avenue, which turns into Highway 70 outside of town. Howes had observed that people parking near the intersections of Ijem and other smaller streets made it difficult to see well while pulling onto the road, which has led to several near miss accidents. Howes suggested either placing no parking signs at each intersection or painting the curbs near each corner with yellow no parking paint, which the City could purchase from Menards for $25 per gallon. The Council seemed receptive to the suggestion, as many of them had observed potential accidents themselves. However, they cautioned that they would have to check with the Department of Transportation before putting up any signage, as they needed to determine if those parking decisions fell within their right of way or not.
In preparation for mosquito season, the Council unanimously approved having Bosch Pest Control come and spray monthly throughout the summer to reduce the mosquito population. They also approved treating standing water with insecticide tablets to reduce mosquito breeding.