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Joseph Bodenbach/The Banner-Press 

After receiving their diplomas, David City High Schoo graduates turn their tassels at the end of commencement on Saturday, May 13.

Stitching Ulysses history

The Village of Ulysses celebrates 150 years on June 24 and 25. A group of Ulysses residents and some former residents recognized that a special quilt was needed for the occasion.

Organizer Rita Shipley said the ideas for a historical quilt came together more than a year ago, and it wasn’t long before the embroidery patterns were made from historical photos of the village’s landmarks. 

On Saturday, 12 of the quilt creators got together for a photo. They are hoping that the raffle of the quilt will help to draw a crowd to the celebration.

The Ulysses High School Alumni Association, the Ulysses Elementary School group and the Ulysses Recreation Committee are making plans for an all-schools reunion on Saturday, June 24 with a banquet at 1 p.m. at the Ulysses Recreation Center.

"We hope to invite all graduates of Ulysses High School as well as those who ever attended Ulysses High School, Ulysses Elementary School or any of the rural schools in the Ulysses area," Shipley said, a member of the organizing committee.

Invitations have been mailed, but if there is anyone who does not receive an invitation but fits the criteria for an invite, please call Carol Reznicek at 402-526-2274 or Greg Fiala at 402-376-7945.

The RecreationCenter will remain open the rest of the day, on June 24, for people to visit. Refreshments will be available. The evening performance of the Polka Dudes will be open to the public.

The Ulysses Volunteer Fire Department is also making plans for activities on the celebration weekend. More information about the celebration will be published in coming weeks.

City, Henningsen considering wastewater plant options

The May 10 City Council meeting revealed that the City and Henningsen Foods Inc. are making progress on plans to overloading of the city’s wastewater lagoons southwest of town.

The city must come up with a plan to address compliance issues at the wastewater treatment plant. It faces an October deadline with the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality. The proposed remedy is an extra lagoon to equalize incoming flows, with construction by next spring.

Costs for the lagoon would be split according to the load of waste coming in to the plant, with Henningsen producing the majority of the flow as it processes its egg products.             

The city sewer system has other problems, notably the infiltration of groundwater into sewer lines in the north part of town. The wastewater treatment plant also would undergo sludge removal at the plant’s lagoons.

When the costs for the threeproposed remedies are totaled, Henningsen would pay $2,577,586 or 60.9 percent, while the city would pay $1,651,914 or 39.1 percent.

At the City Council meeting, Henningsen vice president Mike Behrendt said that officials from the David City plant had met in Omaha with the corporate officials from Kewpie Corp., the plant’s owners.

“We are still gathering information from the Kewpie board in Japan,” Behrendt said. “We want to understand the whole scope of the project. We are making sure we are not going to be revisiting this in the next five or 10 years.”

If the City Council and Henningsen can come to an agreement in June, the city would present a plan to NDEQ in October.

Then the process of finalizing the project and finding a contractor would take place, with construction tentatively set for April 2018 and completion by May of 2019.

Craig Reinsch of Olsson Associates said that Henningsen has been working with the engineers.

“Henningsen has not given me any indication that they don’t want to do this at all,” Reinsch said.

Mayor Alan Zavodny said that with or without Henningsen, the city needs to be compliant.

Reinsch said that meeting the DEQ standards for ammonia release “has been a moving target."

Behrendt said that Henningsen understands the relationship between the company and the city as far as water and wastewater treatment goes.

“We understand we wouldn’t be going through this if it wasn’t for us,” Behrendt said.

The council authorized Reinsch of Olsson Associates to consult with the Water/Wastewater Advisory Committee (WWAC) for funding options for the proposed upgrades at the treatment plant.

Council ponders action on power plant

Zavodny said that he had hoped for a much shorter agenda for the meeting, partly because of one item: Discussion of closing the city’s diesel powered power generation plant on east E Street.

By keeping the plant in operating condition the city receives payments from Nebraska Public Power District. However, plant operator Eric Betzen ran into some health issues last year and the plant was not started up for a few months, as required by NPPD.

Zavodny noted that parts are hard to find for some of the plant’s older engines. The item was tabled until June in part because there scheduling conflicts that didn’t enable Betzen and Electric Department Supervisor Pat Hoeft to be present.

In other action the Council:

*Accepted the bid of Struck and Irwin Paving Inc. of Wisconsin in the amount of $153,652.24 to crack seal and slurry seal a runway at the David City Municipal Airport, contingent upon approval by state and federal authorities.

*Passed Ordinance 1263 on first reading to annex land on the west side of Nebraska 15, across from Aquinas High School. : The legal address is 3420 MN Rd. The property is owned by GDC Properties LLC.

*The Council discussed at length how to resolve the nuisance ordinance violation of 1070 North 8th Street, owned by Barbara Palik. Council members discussed giving the property owner until noon on May 11 to address the violations.