Riley Dam Catwalk
The Union City Village Council approved an engineering plan through Lawson and Fisher Associates to repair the catwalk and piers on the Riley Dam. Significant cracking and exposed rebar was noted on the 97 year old catwalk, which is used by Village employees to raise and lower the gates. The items do not pose a threat to the overall stability to the dam, but is imperative for employee safety and necessary for the overall function of the Riley Dam. The Village is targeting this fall to begin the repair work, and it may require lowering the lake 2-3 feet, and once the engineering work is complete Officials will have a clearer picture of what will be required.
The Village council accepted a donation of $5,000 from FireKeepers Revenue Sharing board to the Village and opted to move the donation to the Senior Center Project. Council Trustee Steve Searls, the Senior Center Chair, noted to the council that the physical work on the building has largely been paused due to Covid concerns, but funding efforts are continuing. This includes receiving a grant through the Union City Rotary Club and more will be announced on that at a later date.
Wolverine Power Cooperative
The Village approved a 14 year energy contract with Wolverine Power Cooperative. Village Manager Chris Mathis noted to council that this will satisfy the State requirement to have all of the electric capacity being from a Michigan source. This also gives the Village more energy independence as this contract is not tied to other organizations, such as the Michigan South Central Power Agency (MSCPA) and American Municipal Power (AMP). Mathis noted the 14 year contract will give Union City a stable and fixed energy price, build Union City's energy independence, and move our energy sources to Michigan. "This is an important step for us in the right direction", noted Village President William Avery.
Village Office status
The council discussed the status of the Village Office during the Covid-19 situation. It was noted that the office remained closed to the public due for the foreseeable future. This is due to an employee testing positive and that the small customer lobby does not allow for distancing between employees or customers.
"With over 2,000 customers that have the same bill due date and one employee taking the majority of those payments in a small lobby, it does not present a safe environment. Our number one goal remains providing full services in a safe environment for customers and our employees" noted Village Manager Chris Mathis.
He noted they will accommodate customers if they have a special need and have been able to provide full services throughout the situation.
Riley Dam Emergency Action Plan
The council approved an updated Emergency Action Plan for the Riley Dam. It was noted that the Riley Dam will also be inspected this year by the State of Michigan and it is anticipated that will take place in July.
Park Board to resume meetings
It was noted that the Park Board will resume meetings at the Riverview Park starting on July 15, and meetings will take place the third Wednesday of the month at 9 a.m. in the outdoor setting to allow for distancing.
The Village has not resumed Planning Commission meetings or Senior Center Committee meetings as of this time.
The next council meeting is scheduled for August 10 at 6 p.m. Agendas, meeting minutes, and electronic meeting details, if necessary, can be found on the Village's website at www.visitunioncity.com