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RANCHESTER — With half the streets in Ranchester chip sealed last year, members of Ranchester Town Council voted Tuesday to chip seal the remaining streets this year in order to keep roads well-maintained and avoid doing the work piece-meal over several years.
Crews will chip seal 34,300 square yards of streets including Aspen Court, Heather Lane, Brook Street, Halbert Street, Hardin Street, Main Street, Coffeen Street, Middle School Drive, Trail Drive, a portion of Coffeen Street near Town Hall and a portion of Railway Street between Town Hall and the fire hall.
The project will use Capital Facilities Tax funds.
The Council also voted on who to hire as the design architect for the Main Street Mercantile, which will be located across from the Ranchester Information Center and is proposed to include three retail spaces, a covered, outdoor space for events like farmers markets and a parking lot with approximately 30 spaces.
Dale Buckingham Architects out of Sheridan was selected to design the mercantile. It is expected the designs will be finished by May 1 and the project bid in July, with construction to begin in August, Ranchester Mayor Allan Moore said.
Town Clerk Teri Laya received permission from the Council to advertise for two seasonal, part-time positions for the Ranchester Information Center, which is usually open from May through September or October.
“It’s hard to keep volunteers on a regular schedule,” Laya said.
Laya had tried to contact past volunteers but was struggling to get firm commitments. Council members expressed a desire to better utilize the information center to catch the interest of tourists passing through town and promote local attractions like the Black Diamond Trail and Connor Battlefield. It is hoped the center will be open six days per week.
The council heard from Senior Center Executive Director Carmen Rideout and Tongue River Valley Community Center Executive Director Erin Kilbride, who both thanked the Council for its support over the last year and asked for continued Optional One-Cent Sales Tax support for the upcoming fiscal year. Rideout requested $6,000 and noted that the Senior Center served 741 congregate meals and delivered 1,800 home delivered meals in Ranchester in the past year.
Kilbride requested funds to support the Ranchester TRVCC and noted that the center saw 9,000 visit in 2013, up 1,500 from 2012.
The Council also voted to hold a budget workshop at 6:30 p.m. next Tuesday.
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