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(Neb.)- Chadron City Council Approves Funding For Dowtown Plaza, Softball Field

By: Jeremy Anderson Posted at: 07/02/2019 07:58 AM

(Story Courtesy: Kerri Rempp, Chadron Record)

(Chadron)- Visitors to the Downtown Plaza and Hampton Field will notice improvements to the facilities after the Chadron City Council Monday approved grants from the city’s LB 840 Community Development Funds.
Just over $9,105 was awarded to the Chadron Community Foundation, which will provide an additional $4,500 in funding, to construct new fencing along the northern border of the city’s Downtown Plaza and to purchase and erect shade sails above the plaza.

Northwest Nebraska Development Corporation Director Deb Cottier, who serves on the Downtown Plaza committee, said the group has been working to determine priorities for the plaza. Fencing and the shade sails will be a visible cue to residents and visitors that the plaza is available for use and hopefully build momentum so the city can continue its development.

The shade sails, which have a four-year warranty, will be taken down in the winter, said Building and Zoning Administrator Janet Johnson. The columns they are attached to will remain in place, but the sails themselves are not rated for snow loads and will be removed each fall.

The second grant was awarded to the Chadron Girls Softball Association. The softball organization requested $3,382 to install additional fencing at Hampton Field. The new fencing will create bullpens, providing a safe place for pitchers and catchers to practice and warm-up during games, said Tom Menke, the president of the association.

It will also allow teams to have pitching and fielding practice simultaneously, said Chadron High School softball coach Jodi Hendrickson. Currently, those practices have to split time on the field.

A third application for LB840 Community Development Funds was denied by the council. Head Start requested funds to repair a door in a shared space with Chadron Public Schools. The review committee recommended denying the request for just over $3,000 because its members did not believe it fit within the parameters of community development or improvement of public spaces. Councilwoman Cheryl Welch advocated for granting the funding anyway but was the only council member to vote in support of the grant.

In other business, the council approved a special permit for Lyle McKinnon to discharge fireworks July 13 from 8:30-11 p.m. at 247 North Morehead St. The council approved the permit in a 3-2 split decision, with Vice Mayor Keith Crofutt and Welch voting in opposition. Both voiced concerns about the impact fireworks would have on neighbors and pets.


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