Second Street options, Parks District concerns, and Pacific Northwest Trail discussed
By Chris Wetherell
On Wednesday May 16 the Troy City Council held a working meeting. Approximately 20 residents were in attendance and the council had a quorum, however Mayor Dallas Carr was not present.
The agenda included a discussion on the closing of Second street, a brief report from Troy Parks District representative, Alinon Arpin, and a brief presentation about the Pacific Northwest Trail by Rick Bass and Anthony South.
The Second Street closing issue was a brief discussion involving the City Council’s authority regarding public lands held in trust. They identified three options going forward:
pass ordinance number 2018-751 which basically allows city council alone to vote on closing Second street and granting that same authority going forward.
Hold a special ballot and ask County Commissioners to include district 7 and 8 in the voting process or only district 7.
Go to a vote in November with the County Commission deciding on which districts to include.
Although no decision was made, Chuck Ekstedt said he preferred a vote and that it should include everyone that has a 295 prefix on their telephone number. The other members seemed to agree, and each felt that the first option needed more research.
Next, Arpin took a few moments to thank the city for their help with the ice skating rink and inquired about the flooding issue of the field in the park. Members acknowledged that the field is a flood plain and that it has been an issue for a long time. They were not sure what ,if anything, could be done to fix it.
Arpin then requested that the city investigate the possibility of taking down the baseball back stops in the fall to avoid snow damage. The council said that new backstops were on the way and were going to be installed by the manufacturer and would include an upgrade to prevent collapse due to snow load. Council indicated that the installation was a few weeks out.
Anthony South and Rick Bass made a presentation regarding the Pacific Northwest Trail system modification/ relocation of the existing and purposed trail. The current trail is routed through the northern portion of the Yaak. It is very remote and does not have the views or access to local waterways that the new trail would. The trail purposed will begin near the Flathead, continue to Eureka, and then follow along Lake Koocanusa into Libby. It would then cross over to the south side of the Kootenai River and then into Bonners Ferry.
South provided an excellent explanation of the purposed route explaining that it was on public land but that it would allow hikers access to towns along the way to purchase good and services. Bass added that these changes would need congressional approval and that Idaho is working for congressional approval. Bass felt that if the purposed trail system in Idaho was approved, then Montana would follow with support for the proposed trail.
The meeting concluded after the City Council announced that the city auditor had sent her engagement letter outlining her tasks as an auditor and other information.