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Atwater City Council continues to discuss public library locations

ATWATER -- The Atwater City Council is continuing to look for a different building to house its city library. At its meeting Wednesday, the council agreed to gather information about potential locations and rental costs and bring it to their next council meeting Feb. 22.

Once the data has been compiled, the council will hold a community forum to gauge public sentiment on where they would like to see the library located and how much city money they'd like to spend, said Councilman Dale Tagtow.

The council wants to "put the numbers out to them" and "get some input," said Tagtow.

One possible location is the old Tom Thumb building on U.S. Highway 12. A liquor store is in half of the building, but the other half is available. Tagtow said it's possible the $800 monthly rent could be lowered. The council will be inquiring if empty classrooms in the Atwater elementary school could be used. The old Hotel Atwater is another possibility. The owner of the historic hotel has been invited to the Feb. 22 council meeting, said Tagtow. He said the council is eager to find a solution to the library problem. The current building has exterior problems, including bricks that have fallen from the facade. A city fund already exists to fund the demolition of the old library, but first a new home, whether temporary or permanent, needs to be found.

In other action the council:

- Approved a request from the Atwater Go-Kart club to allow camping in town June 10 and 11, when a sanctioned international event will be held in the community.

- Scheduled a board of appeal meeting for 6 p.m. April 6 for residents to discuss their property valuations.

- Was informed that Mayor Bruce Baker will attend a workshop Feb. 21 in Montevideo to learn about a potential grant for cleaning up polluted areas. The city is looking for funds to offset asbestos cleanup in city buildings.

- Accepted an offer by Kandiyohi County Commissioner Harlan Madsen to attend a council meeting to discuss county and statewide issues. Madsen will attend the council's March 15 meeting.

Carolyn Lange

A reporter for 35 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.

(320) 894-9750