City: Take the survey

By Jason Ferguson

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If you live in the city of Custer, or even outside the city limits, but still call Custer home, city officials want your help in guiding the future growth and development of the city.

The city is updating its comprehensive plan and invites the public to participate in the crafting of that update by participating in a survey. Responses to the survey will ensure the comprehensive plan reflects the needs and preferences of the community.

City planning director Tim Hartmann told the Custer City Council at its Dec. 3 meeting that the survey has been finalized and that it’s time to spread the word to the community with hopes that as many people as possible will give feedback.

“The more input, the better,” he said.

The survey is available online at both custer.govoffice.com and at plancuster.com. Paper copies of the survey may also be obtained at city hall.

One on the council suggested taking copies of the survey to the senior center for distribution, while Hartmann said he plans to work with Custer High School students to get the youths’ perspective on the town, as well.

There are other ways to participate in crafting the update of the city’s comprehensive plan. For more information, visit plan

custer.com or contact Hartmann at 673-4824.

The council heard from public works director Bob Morrison, who said the deer management program is a go, as the city was granted 75 deer tags by S.D. Department of Game, Fish and Parks.

The reduction of the deer in town will run until Dec. 20  and will see sharpshooters kill antlerless deer in strategic areas around town, including Rocky Knolls Golf Course. The deer will be taken to Top Pin Archery, where they will be processed at a cost of $40 each. The deer will be tested for disease and the meat will be given to The Storehouse to be distributed to those in need.

In other news from the Dec. 3 meeting, the council:

• Approved the second reading of an ordinance for designated wetland maintenance, as part of its requirements for the West Dam project.

The designation won’t be a major expense, but it must be done to satisfy the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Environmental Protection Agency permit requirements. Some wetland space will be removed from West Dam and added to another area. The  maintenance will entail inspecting the wetland area and reseeding it if needed.

• Approved a resolution accepting the warranty deed for the former hospital and clinic land, called Tract Hospital and Tract Clinic, subject to restrictions in the deed, and transfering the clinic land to Custer County.

The transfer allows for the county’s search and rescue and emergency services to use the property. If the county stops using the building for those purposes, it will return ownership to the city.

• Renewed its animal control contract with Battle Mountain Humane Society at the same cost of $1,000 per month. The city’s general government committee investigated other proposals for animal control, but none materialized. Mayor Corbin Herman said Battle Mountain meets the needs of the city, per the contract.

• Approved the first reading of a $123,200 supplemental appropriation for 2018.

• Approved the Custer Area Chamber of Commerce’s request to hold the Christmas parade Dec. 6 at 5:30 p.m. downtown, with the lighting of the Juanita Fish Memorial Tree to follow in Way Park. 

• Approved submitting an application for and paying a fee for a Conditional Letter of Map Revision (CLOMR) and Letter of Map Revision (LOMR) in preparation for improvements to West Dam. The review is necessary for proposed improvements that affect the hydrologic or hydraulic characteristics of a flooding source or when proposed improvements are in a regulatory floodway. West Dam is located in a regulatory floodway on French Creek and improvements will revise the hydraulic characteristics of the creek crossing.

The CLOMR will cost $6,500, while the LOMR will be $8,000. The CLOMR is done before the project and the LOMR goes into effect once it is complete.

• Put a 3 percent cost of living adjustment in the 2019 budget for city employees.

• Learned a replacement for the Veterans Memorial flagpole has been ordered. 

• Appointed Michael Francis to the Custer Cruisin’ committee.

• Approved a resolution to dissolve the city’s Tax Increment Finance District No. 1, as the city’s obligation for the district, Boot Hill Ranch Subdivision, has ended. The TIF was created in 1999. The property tax dollars from that development will now go toward the entities that receive money from property tax, including the city, county, school district, etc., rather than toward paying off the city’s obligation to the TIF.

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