Winfield swims to the finish for pool funding

By Gretchen Teske, Mt. Pleasant News


WINFIELD ? Winfield citizens have been diligently raising money for their new swimming pool and are $35,000 shy of closing their funding gap. Mayor Chris Finnell spoke on the issue Wednesday, April 11, during the city council meeting.

The hearing for the Community Attraction and Tourism (CAT) grant the city applied for in order to fund the pool, was held in Sheldon on Tuesday. There is no word on whether or not the city was awarded the grant, but they are hopeful to finish fundraising within the next two months. ?One more big push as far as reaching out to businesses and the like, (and) we might be able to pull that in,? Finnell said.

Continuing with outdoor talk, it was reported ash trees in the area were becoming infested with ash bore. The cost to treat each tree is $0.50 an ounce which would average to around $60 a year for a large tree. The other option would be to remove the trees altogether, which would cost upward of $1,000 a tree. The council agreed to try and treat the trees first.

Keeping a clean town is also the concern of the Healthy Wolves, a 4-H group comprised of fourth- and fifth-grade students from the Winfield-Mt. Union Community School District. They have planned a, ?Clean up Winfield Day? on April 22 at 2 p.m. The group asked the council to provide gloves and garbage bags for their clean up and the council agreed.

Installing a sidewalk from the water tower to the nursing home has been in negotiations. The sidewalk would allow for grade schoolers to have a safe place to walk after school. The council will begin hearing bids during the summer months.

Providing a town with amenities for its citizens is also important to Winfield. Kristi Ray from the Mt. Pleasant Chamber of Commerce encouraged the town to continue working on tourist amenities. She has been working on bringing a grocery store to the area to no avail. Talks of bringing a Dollar General to the town have been in the works but 1,000 households in the area are needed for them to consider residence.

Bringing the conversation indoors, Judy Rawson, of the Winfield Historical Society, reported they will be replacing the carpet in the museum. The project will be completed by Marshall?s Furniture and Flooring, of Washington, and will cost $5,500. The historical society has put up $500.00 of their own money for the project and asked the council to match that. The remaining money will come from a matching funds grant they applied for earlier in the year. The motion was approved.

In other news, sewer rates have been re-established. The new minimum is $20 for the first 3,000 gallons and every 1,000 after is $5.50, up from $4.50. Water rates have also been re-established from a minimum of $15.50 to $17.00 for the first 1,000 gallons then $5.50 for every 1,000 after that, up from $4.50 last year. The new rates will take effect July of 2018.

The next meeting will be held Wednesday, May 9, at 5 p.m.