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City to apply for grant to upgrade Arvig Park; Improvements would make the park accessible year-round

After a moment of silence in memory of councilwoman Harriet Mattfeld, who died Monday, Mayor Timothy Meehl, call the March 13 council meeting to order.

On the agenda was a resolution to apply for a $250,000 outdoor recreation grant from the Department of Natural Resources to make improvements at Arvig Park on land the city owns. The improvements would include upgrading the bathroom facilities for year-round use, according to Jonathan Smith, city manager.

The grant would be a matching grant, which the hockey association has said it would provide.

"They already have most of the money available," Smith said. The city would provide project management services as well as maintenance for the park.

Other improvements would include adding a sheet of ice and moving the ice from the Perham Area Community Center to the park, a storage shed to house the Zamboni and cross country equipment and other upgrades to allow for winter activities, Smith said, suggesting broomball and snowshoeing as possible options.

The council also heard an update on the Third Street reconstruction project from City Engineer Jade Berube. With the uncertainty of state funding—the legislature has yet to bring forth a bonding bill—two funding alternative will be sent to the state, he said to allow the project to meet bid and construction start date deadlines.

Bid A would take into account state money received for the project should a bonding bill get passed this session. A second bid option provides an alternative budget should the city have to fund the project.

"We're sending in (the two alternatives) so in case something happens, we can continue with the project," he said. "By submitting it in this way, we can compare apples to apples."