A fundraiser may make it possible to begin fix up of the popular path; ensure its future use
By Lynda Jensen
The popular bike path running between Dassel and Cokato was the subject of a meeting March 31, with city, school and township officials attending it to discuss needed maintenance of the path.
Dassel Mayor Mike Scanlon reported to the Dassel City Council that he and City Administrator Myles McGrath attended the meeting.
The path needs to be resurfaced, which is estimated to cost in the neighborhood of $75,000 to $80,000 for a one-inch overlay, and $122,000 for a thicker overlay, Scanlon said. These figures were confirmed by DC Supt. Jeff Powers.
Others who attended the meeting included: Cokato Administrator Don Levens and Mayor Bruce Johnson from the City of Cokato, Dean Mahlstedt from Cokato Township, Karl Townsend of Dassel Township, and Supt. Jeff Powers and Kevin Dahlman of the DC School Board.
All the five entities involved expressed support for the project, Powers noted. However, the townships reported the lack of funds and need for more time to budget for the project. Cokato Township may have funds available in 2011, according to meeting minutes taken by Powers.
In the original language of the agreement, the entity that had the bike path run through its vicinity was fiscally responsible for it, but this probably won’t keep the bike path going, Scanlon said.
Powers confirmed Thursday that this was what was written in the original language.
“Ninety percent of it is (located) in the townships or school,” Scanlon said during the council meeting. “It’s used by everybody.”
During the bike path meeting, a five-way split of the two townships, cities, and school at the Dassel council meeting was proposed and accepted. The officials attending decided on a united front, to work cooperatively together to ensure the future of the bike path.
Scanlon presented this idea to the council Monday, saying it was the best way to ensure that the bike path continues to be enjoyed by all, he said.
At the bike path meeting, it was decided to get a private contractor to bid on it, and start up a fundraiser project towards it.
Fundraising efforts are being considered for those who would like to see the bike path continue.
Anyone interested should contact Jeff Powers at the school, (320) 286-4100.
When is the next meeting?
The next meeting to discuss bike maintenance will be 7 a.m. Tuesday, April 28 at the Grounds in Cokato.
Anyone interested in helping with the effort to secure the bike path’s future is welcome to attend.
Anyone with questions may call Supt. Jeff Powers at (320) 286-4100.
Bike path meeting minutes
The following minutes were recorded by Supt. Jeff Powers during the bike path maintenance meeting March 31.
A joint meeting was conducted recently of several entities at the Grounds in regards to bike path maintenance.
The following topics were discussed:
1. Activity since the Dec. 2 2008 meeting: A request was made of Representative Dean Urdahl to pursue stimulus money as a way to fund the bike path overlay. Ron Mortensen, Meeker County Engineer, developed project specifications and costs which were submitted to Representative Urdahl.
Because there is an agreement in place stating that the five represented entities will maintain the bike path, MnDOT will not include the bike path overlay as a project for stimulus money.
Safe Routes to School is another grant-based program, but the results will probably be the same because MnDOT is also involved with this program.
2. We have two prices for the project. The one from Ron Mortensen is specific and includes a 1.5” overlay, along with rebuilding low spots. The cost estimate is $121,674. Karl Townsend (Dassel Township) has a rough approximation of $70,000 to $80,000 that includes a one-inch overlay and no rebuilding of any part of the trail. We need to get a specific cost for more minimal effort than Ron Mortensen’s project specifications.
3. Currently, the representatives from each entity expressed the following positions regarding the project:
a. City of Cokato, supports the project, and can find the funding.
b. Cokato Township supports the project, but no funding is available until fiscal year 2011.
c. Dassel Township supports the project, but is low on funds.
d. Dassel City supports the project, but low on funds.
e. DC Schools support the project and can budget the money for next year
4. The group discussed how to divide the cost, and decided that an equal five-way split was appropriate and that a united effort was neededt.
5. Dean Mahlstedt will contact Mid-Minnesota Hot Mix to get a specific idea of what they think should be done and how much it will cost.
6. The group is going to make a fundraising effort with the following initial contacts:
a. Karl and Jeff - Rotary
b. Cokato Lions - Jeff
c. Kingston Lions - Kevin
d. W-H Round-up funds - Kevin
e. Cokato Chamber - Dean
f. Red Rooster Board - Mike
g. Corn Carnival Board - Dean and Jeff
h. Stockholm Township - Kevin
i. Collinwood Township - Karl
Each representative will keep their board up-to-date on our progress and plans.