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City Council OKs entrance signs

The Worthington City Council approved funding for three new entrance signs Monday night. (Submitted photo)

WORTHINGTON — In the final meeting of 2013, the Worthington City Council approved three new entrance signs, to be placed leading into town.

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The three signs will come at a cost of $73,547 and will be purchased from Fullerton Building Systems, Worthington.

The edge of the sign will be a brick veneer, with the middle made of Dryvit.

One of the pillars on the side is designed to be taller than the other, a point mayor Alan Oberloh raised a question.

“We wanted to be asymmetrical, we wanted it to look sort of like the pillar we have here on 10th Street,” council member Scott Nelson said.

Of the total, the city has allocated $50,000, $25,000 a year ago, and matched that again for 2014. The remaining amount will be raised by the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce.

“We’re going to do fundraisers for the final $25,000,” Nelson said. “The issue is how you front the money for the project.”

Only $9,062 is required at the time for a security deposit. Because it’s a city project, no sales tax will need to be paid if purchased after the first of the year.

Bob McCuen has volunteered his time for the foundation work and Susanne Murphy has donated the time from Worthington Excavating for the dirt work.

“We appreciate their contribution to the project,” city administrator Craig Clark said.

The group working on the signs — Brenda Hurlbut, Cindy Penning, Zuby Jansen, Murphy, Nancy Vaske and Nelson —identified three locations for the signs.

The first is at a site along Minnesota 60 north of town and east of the Blue Line travel plaza. The second is also on Minnesota 60, south of town near the intersection of County Road 10. The third sign is proposed on U.S. 59 north, past the existing sign past Airport Road.

Oberloh asked the signs not be placed in a ditch.

“I can’t think of another town where the signs are in the ditch,” he said.

The three signs come at a cost of $45,312 with Harvey Signs, Worthington, doing the illuminated portion of the sign with a cost of $18,735.

“We have all local participation in the whole sign,” Nelson said. “We did look at some others for a bit.”

The city is still working on the possibility of using solar to power the signs.

The warranty for the brick veneer is five years, while the Dryvit has a 10-year warranty.

“I’m quite confident that stuff will last much longer,” council member Rod Sankey said. “I worked for Fullerton for three and a half years and it lasts longer than five years. It’s pretty durable stuff.” The project will begin in the spring.

In other business, the city approved an on-sale beer license for Tacos Lupe, on-sale beer, on-sale wine and on-sale liquor licenses for Mini Market Lupita, on-sale beer and on-sale wine licenses for BenLee’s and an off-sale beer license for La Morenita.

The council heard a summary of performance evaluation of the city administrator, who “got a favorable review,” Oberloh said. “There are a couple work items he’s been asked to do.”

A resolution authorizing transfer of Worthington Police Department K-9 Laika to pet status was also approved. She will become the family pet of Randy Liepold, who is her partner. There will be an open house for Laika and the K-9 unit from 10 a.m. to noon on Dec. 31 at the Fire Hall training room.

The Buffalo Ridge Task Force has been awarded a grant for continued funding for 2014-15 through the Department of Public Safety. The council approved the resolution to authorize Director of Public Safety Mike Cumiskey to enter in an agreement where the city will continue in its role as the fiscal agent.