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City water tank in bad shape

WALSENBURG- The Walsenburg City Council discussed the need on Tuesday night to repair or replace the City’s water tank, perched high above the town.  First installed in 1964 primarily for fire suppression, the 1.5 million gallon tank is the victim of time and neglect.  A video of a recent inspection of the tank alarmed all the members of the board who saw it, and who urged the others to watch it.  “This is something you need to see,” said Councilman James England. “Ugh,” groaned Mayor Edi Sheldon.  “I don’t think I want to…” “Well, it’s something you should take the time for,” chimed in Councilman Lou Taylor.

    The cost to replace the aging tank is estimated to be around $1.5 million, which does not include the cost of demolishing and hauling away the old one.  It was stressed that the current tank is not in danger of bursting.

    Finance Chairman Larry Patrick told the Council that because of lower than expected gas sales, due to the warm weather, he is recommending the City hold off making any new major purchases of equipment for the next sixty days, unless it has already been voted on.  He also noted that the roof of the train station- now being used by the Walsenburg Chamber of Commerce- was in need of repair or replacing.  The cost for repair is estimated to be around $3,000 to $5,000.

    Bruce Quintana, reporting on Parks and Recreation, said a group had approached his committee about building a new skate park in town. “They want to take the bull by the horns and get this park going.  I think we should back their effort.”  Quintana also reported the committee is still analyzing data on Walsenburg Wild Waters, and should have  new pricing to present by next City Council meeting, and hopefully begin hiring for the summer.

    In other business, Rosa Lopez of Rosa’s Cantina pled no contest for selling alcohol to minors, and has agreed to a 30 day suspension, with 12 days closure and 18 days in abeyance.  The liquor license for Loaf ‘N’ Jug was approved.

    Re-1 superindependent Mike Doyle and Gaye Davis asked the council for equipment assistance in lifting concrete bases off of trucks at the new sports complex on the north edge of town.  This was approved.

    Police Chief Larry Baldonado was asked questions by Council about a 2008 crime statistic report that was just published.  Criminal trespass and burglaries are up, but overall, crime is down.