TRF receives housing rehabilitation grant

by April Scheinoha

    The city of Thief River Falls has received a $556,600 grant for the rehabilitation of single-family, owner-occupied homes. Community Services Director Mark Borseth made the announcement at the Thief River Falls City Council meeting Tuesday, May 3.
    About 22 homes will be renovated as part of the Small Cities Development Program grant. Those homes are bordered by Sixth Street on the north, railroad tracks on the west, Annie Street on the south, and an alley between Markley and Kendall Avenues on the west. Low to moderate income guidelines apply. A combination of grants and loans would be provided through the program, Borseth said. Each recipient would be required to secure the loans with mortgages.
    Letters to gauge homeowner interest were sent earlier. Borseth said those letters were logged in the order the city received them. The city will respond to the homeowners in the order the letters were returned to the city.
    Council Member Steve Narverud notified the public that potholes may be fixed as soon as possible within 10 days. However, the weather needs to cooperate.
    With regard to Davis Avenue, Narverud said, “The street itself is one big pothole right now.”
    Davis Avenue is among the improvements planned as part of the 2016 Streets and Utilities Improvement Project. As a result, the street will be milled and overlaid this summer.
    City Council held a first reading of an ordinance pertaining to departments, divisions, boards and commissions. The council is expected to consider the matter at an upcoming meeting.
    City Attorney Delray Sparby noted the ordinance amends city code to more accurately reflect current operations of the city. Among other items, the ordinance noted the city’s new organizational structure. In the recent past, city department leaders reported to the city administrator, who was their immediate supervisor. Now, the department leaders’ immediate supervisor is City Council, their council committee or the city administrator as delegated by the council or council committee.
    Mayor Brian Holmer informed the council that he had signed a proclamation for Long-Term Care Week, May 8-15. Thief River Care Center and Oakland Park Communities have provided long-term care in the community for many years.
    The proclamation noted that “the wellbeing and happiness of these residents depend in large part on the nursing staff, nursing aides and others who provide daily, conscientious, hands-on care.”
    The proclamation further noted that the week serves as a way to show “appreciation of the service to the seniors in our community and to express encouragement and appreciation for the service performed by these caregivers in the public good.”
    The council approved summary publication of an ordinance pertaining to licensed brew pubs, brewer taprooms and off-sale malt liquor. The ordinance was approved at the last council meeting. City leaders decided to make the change in the event someone wishes to engage in such operations in the city.
    Given the length of the ordinance, the council decided to publish a summary of the ordinance. Sparby noted that a full copy of the ordinance will be available at the Thief River Falls Public Library.
    The next council meeting is scheduled Tuesday, May 17 at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall.