Keep checking your water temperature

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner, Perham Happenings | Posted on 13-03-2014

As it remains cold, I want to remind everyone to keep checking their water temperature in their homes. If it drops below 40 degrees, some action may be required.

If you live in Perham, call City Hall and ask what to do. We will give you a break on your sewer charge in Perham, but you have to call City Hall and let them know that you are going to let your water run.

A pencil-width stream is what is being suggested, but that can be vague. Take a 1-cup measuring cup and see how long it takes to fill it. It should take 45 seconds. Leave one faucet running at that amount – just one faucet in the home should be sufficient.

As it begins to warm up, continue to monitor your water. It is going to take a long time for the ground to warm up and the frost to get out of the ground.

On another topic, some people think they have the right to go through an area that is being blocked off by emergency vehicles that have their emergency lights on – not so.

The fire department was recently called to a report of a transformer on fire on a pole. The area was blocked off while waiting for the electrical company to arrive. This is done for safety reasons and nobody is to go in this area until it is found to be safe.

Well, someone decided that they needed to go through this area, and went around at least two emergency vehicles (I was in one of them) and then yelled some very unfriendly comments out the window toward us emergency responders.

This is very upsetting. Did they really think we were there just for fun, when it was very windy and very cold? I would have rather remained at the banquet that I was attending.

Please have respect for all emergency responders and people in uniform – you never know when you may need some help.

By the way, the license number was reported. I haven’t heard if the vehicle was found. This kind of action is not taken lightly.

Think spring!

Pray for warmer weather!

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner | Posted on 20-02-2014

The cold continues to linger in the area. Not a lot of good comes from being cold for long periods of time. Some cities are experiencing water line freeze-ups. One thing that we can do is run our tap water until it gets real cold and then take the temperature of the water.

If it is 40 degrees or lower, call City Hall at 346-4455 on what to do. It’s better to be safe than sorry. You will probably need to run your water with a stream the size of a pencil until it warms up, but call and someone will give you advice. The frost is going down deeper as the cold lingers.

Those of you who are burning wood, please check your chimney and make sure that it is clear of any buildup. Chimneys create some buildup when temperatures warm up and you can cut back and don’t burn as much wood.

Pray for warmer weather, everyone!

‘Forever proud’ of Perham firefighters

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner | Posted on 13-02-2014

Hi everyone. Enjoying the beautiful winter?

“Ha ha,” you all say.

I don’t really like it either, but when it’s 100 degrees this summer, we will probably be complaining then, too.

As the mayor of this great city, I am very proud of our firefighters and the great job and courage that they have all displayed during this cold weather. Battling an all-night fire at the potato warehouse and a trailer house fire during this cold period is not easy. All of you continue to hold your heads up high and are ready for whatever you are confronted with.

I am also grateful to be a member of this great team, and will forever be proud. I want to thank all of the area firefighters for all of your help during these and all events that we work on together. Mutual aid works great, and we all seem to work together very well. One reason that mutual aid works so great, in my mind, is the leadership that each and every fire department has.

There is snow in the forecast in the near future, and I want to remind everyone of the ‘No Parking’ ordinance in the city of Perham. Whenever it snows two or more inches, there is to be no parking on any city streets until they are cleared of the snow. Snow removal normally takes place in the early morning hours.

Parking tickets will be issued and excuses such as, “It wasn’t snowing when I went to bed,” will not work. The best thing you can do is not park on the street at night during the winter.

I want to thank those who decide to get a ride home from a bar if they have had too much to drink. But, have someone park your vehicle behind the bar or off the street somehow, or a ticket will be issued. We have to be able to get the streets cleared.

Think spring!

What would you pay for a Quiet Zone?

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner, Perham Happenings | Posted on 08-11-2013

Anybody want the train horns to stop blowing when they go through Perham? The subject is still on the table and being discussed.

Some proposals were presented at the Committee of the Whole meeting last Wednesday. It can be very costly in the amount of dollars it will take, or it can be less expensive but at the cost of closing a crossing (that crossing possibly being 2nd Ave. NW).

The most expensive way, and the safest, will cost in the neighborhood of $2.5 million, with a $21,000-a-year maintenance fee. Close that 2nd Ave. crossing, which is our most dangerous crossing, according to the railroad, and the cost drops to an estimated $200,000 – quite a difference.

The railroad wants to close 25 percent of its crossings nationwide, and we have a high number of crossings for the size of our city. Though there is not talk of it at this time, I have a feeling that in the future, the railroad may pick crossings themselves and close them, with cities receiving nothing in return.

I am keeping an open mind on this subject and am open to all options. In the end, it will have to be paid for by the taxpayers, or another option would be fundraising, which was brought up to me by a group that would love to quiet the trains.

We have lived with trains for a long time and have gotten used to them, but there are more trains every day, and the decibel level of the horns has risen. The horns are annoying, and I would love to quiet them as we have been discussing this for three years now. But at what price?

I would appreciate any comments. Email me at tmeehl@cityofperham.com.

Thank you and stay safe everyone.

Hey kids, ever wonder what it would be like to be ‘Mayor for a Day?’

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner, Perham Happenings | Posted on 03-10-2013

The League of Minnesota Cities is holding a ‘Mayor for a Day’ essay contest. Mayors across the state, including me, are charged with spreading the word about it.

Organized as a part of the League’s centennial year celebrations, the contest challenges kids ages 7-12 to think about what they would do if they were in charge of their city for a day.

The winning essayist will win $100 and have his or her essay published in “Minnesota Cities” magazine. Entries must be handwritten and submitted by November 1. For more information, visit www.lmc.org/mayorforaday, or call 651-215-4035.

Next Wednesday, Oct. 9 will be International Walk to School Day. Perham schools and this newspaper will be putting out more information about the local walk.

Construction continues on 3rd Ave. S.W. and also the parking lot behind the Post Office all the way down to Photo Magic. October 25 is the target completion date for these projects. In the meantime, the parking situation may result in some of us having to walk a little further than we may like. Please have patience.

The October Perham City Council meeting will be held on the 14th, as this is the second Monday of the month.

Construction on the wastewater ponds is in the final phase. Everything will be online by the end of the month.

The fall harvest is in full swing, which brings out slower-moving farm machinery. We all have to pay attention to ensure that this busy, enjoyable time of year will be accident-free and a great success.

Have a great week, everyone.

Have a happy and safe 4th of July

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner, Perham Happenings | Posted on 03-07-2013

The next city council meeting will be Monday, July 8 at 5:15 p.m. in the council chambers.

Your concerns can be heard at the beginning of the meeting; please keep it short and to the point. Any action on your concern may not take place immediately but will be looked into.

Please be careful on this 4th of July weekend if you are handling fireworks. One small grass fire has already been reported here in Perham.

Work continues on the wastewater ponds. Be patient with us as this will be ongoing all summer. At times the smell can be very frustrating, but negative comments on social media and to people from outside the area really do not do anybody any good. Six million dollars is being spent on improvements but it is going to take the rest of the summer and into the fall to complete.

Did you know that we have another walking/bike path in town? The path goes out along County 34 and turns left down toward the hospital and winds around the hospital campus and on down 9th Street S.W.

Wildflowers will be planted this fall, making it even more beautiful in a few years as they become established. It is in the very early stages, but plans are being looked into for a trail that would extend from Perham all the way to Pelican Rapids. Stay tuned.

Have a great 4th of July.

Yellowjacket colors represent all Perham students, not just some

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner, Perham Happenings | Posted on 12-04-2013

Spring is trying to spring into action.

I want to thank Otter Tail County for patching the streets that lead into town, hopefully it stays in place. On the city level we are waiting for it to warm up and dry out.

I would like all of you to come out this Saturday evening for the “Dancing With the Stars” event at the Perham High School auditorium at 7:30 p.m. This event is aimed at raising money to fight cancer, which is a monster.

Cancer strikes many people and can strike at any time. We all know of someone who is fighting this dreadful enemy. To me this is not about me showing what I can do, it is for those who are suffering from or have died from and hopefully to protect those of us who may develop this ugly monster.

So please come on out and let’s fill the auditorium. The cost is only $5 at the door. There will be a People’s Choice as well as a Judge’s Choice award. The People’s Choice will be determined by how much money is put in a jar for each couple, so bring a few extra dollars.

Congratulations goes out to all of those students who participate in extra-curricular activities. I attended the 549 Gala this past weekend. All across the state there are talented students, and here in Perham we have many students who participate and develop their talents. It also takes special people to bring those talents out, and that is our teachers and the volunteers who help out in the schools. Congratulations to all of you.

If you have not seen the custom-built motorcycle that was built by a group of students with the assistance of the great group from Lil’ Evil, then folks, make it a point to see this. It is magnificent. So when the water tower on the south side is painted in Yellowjacket colors, it is to recognize all students, not just a select few.

Go Yellowjackets!

Check heating systems, sewer vents to stay safe in winter

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner, Perham Happenings | Posted on 31-01-2013

Recruiting for volunteers to help out with our museums is taking place. If you would like to know what positions are available or how you can help out, stop on down at the ITOW Veterans Museum on Wednesday, Feb. 6 at 6 p.m. There will be an information session along with some great food.

Check out your heating systems everyone, and especially if you are using a wood burner, either in your home or your shop. Make sure your chimney is clean and not building up with creosote, which can ignite and cause a chimney fire, which could become a disaster if not caught in a timely manner. Even if you cleaned your chimney before the season started, please check periodically.

I noticed the other day that the water level in my toilets was not staying at the normal level. I went outside and looked at the sewer vents on the roof to see if there was ice building up. Sure enough, they were frosted over. I poured a little water down them and now the water level is staying where it is supposed to be. Sewer gas can be very deadly and I seem to have caught mine in time, so look and check or have someone look for you.

Some of the intersections can become very icy as conditions change from day to day and hour to hour as temperatures rise or fall. Please pay attention when approaching an intersection and slow down. A few extra seconds is better than a wrecked vehicle, or an injury. Spring is coming, but for now take your time.

Uffda, what about those gas prices? Had to tease us below $3 for just a short time, but here they go again, up, up, up a lot faster than down, down, down. Makes you wonder.

Have a wonderful week, everyone.

Consider one of Perham’s volunteer opportunities

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner, Perham Happenings | Posted on 17-01-2013

Be careful outside, everyone. As you know, it is very icy and the ice may be here awhile until it can melt off. The side roads, especially in the country, are very icy, as are some of our side streets.

I am going to give a few tips that may help.

If your vehicle is sliding on the street and will not turn, let off the brake and put the vehicle in neutral. Lightly brake and let off and lightly brake again. If you can’t make your corner or turn, just keep going and go to the next turn-off. Always wear your seat belt. The biggest factor is to please slow down.

Do you have some free time on your hands and would like something to do? How about volunteering? There are plenty of opportunities out there.

One in particular is with our museums in town, the History Museum and the ITOW Veterans Museum. If you or someone you know might be interested, contact myself or the museums.

ITOW is looking for a director and being able to pay a big wage may be tough. Maybe someone out there would be interested, or two or three people could team up and help out.

The museum’s board of directors are open to ideas on how to raise money to fund the museums, and they are looking for people to serve on the board.

The group that currently is on the board is very involved and working very hard. If you have any ideas at all, please come forward, because any idea is a good idea.

Be careful out there and have a great week.

Be safe this holiday season

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Posted by Tim Meehl | Posted in Mayor's Corner, Perham Happenings | Posted on 19-12-2012

I want to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Treat every day as a special one as we never know when it may be our last on this great earth. Please remember those who were tragically taken from us this past week in Connecticut.

A lot of you will be traveling this coming holiday week, please be careful. With the world of cell phones and all the technology we have, we may sometimes overlook some safety features.

Put together a winter survival kit of some sort including a flashlight, extra blanket, cap, gloves, water and some snacks. There used to be kits that you could buy with candles and things, check around – maybe they still do.

Another safety item that I suggest is a reflective safety vest. Buy one of these and store it in your vehicle just in case you have trouble on the roadway and may have to work on your vehicle, such as changing a tire. This will help people see you and possibly save your life.

Love your neighbor, love your family, and better yet, love everyone.  Happy holidays.