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Ronan mayor signs up for another term

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RONAN – Mayor Kim Aipperspach put up his right hand during the Ronan City Council meeting on Monday and was sworn into office by the police chief.

Aipperspach took his first seat on the council as a board member in 1989 with a desire to help the community. He became the mayor about ten years ago, halfway through an existing term, so he is on his third and a half term. 

He hopes to see construction on U.S Highway 93 eventually completed, but he said the state is working with a tight budget, so he doesn’t expect the project to start anytime soon. He said construction on a section between Dairy Queen and Pablo might start in 2020, but the section through town towards the Ninepipe National Wildlife Refuge might not start until 2028.  

Aipperspach thanked everyone for allowing him to serve as he took his seat at the head of the council table saying it will be another four years. The position, along with three others, was uncontested so an election wasn’t needed.

Noel Lance Hames was sworn in next as the newest board member on the seven-person board. Chris Adler and Marlene Melton were also sworn in during the meeting.

The newly organized board addressed the town’s water filtration system project by approving a bill for $4,309. Public Works Director Dan Miller said the entire project is estimated to cost about $1 million and will be paid for with loans and forgiveness loans. 

Miller said the town is under a state and federal requirement to put in the filtration system, and the town will be fined if they don’t comply. The project will filter surface water coming down from the mountains that is already cleaned with ultraviolet light and chlorinated.

The project is slated for completion in 2018.

“It should be up and running this time next year,” Miller said.

As snow starts to accumulate, Miller reminds people not to pile snow on street corners, as it’s difficult for people driving in cars to see around them.

Ronan Police Chief Ken Weaver said the Ronan Parade of Lights was a success again this year, but he would like it to be coordinated with other events to prevent problems for next year. 

As it was, a basketball game was also going on and people ended up parking on Main Street, which isn’t allowed during parade times. People were also trying to get to another holiday event in town right after the parade. “It was a mass exodus both ways,” he said. 

Chief Weaver added that no one got hurt but he would like to see more time between holiday events.

Mayor Aipperspach closed the meeting by saying another year was finished for the council. The next meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 8.

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