Pine Bluffs Post - Serving all of Eastern Laramie County since 1908

By Gary Collins
Pine Bluffs Post 

Humphrey says goodbye to Burns town council; election winners sworn in


The refurbished Burns Town Council chambers was the witness last Tuesday night to the retirement of long-time council member and former mayor, Harvey Humphrey,

The meeting had been postponed to Tuesday due to the weather events of Monday, June 12, with the predicted tornadic activity.

With the official swearing in of Mayor Ralph Bartels to a second term, Dennis Bastian to another term on the council and the return to the council of former mayor and councilwoman Judy Johnstone, Humphrey exited his seat and found one in the audience.

During the public comment portion of the meeting, now Citizen Humphrey rose to address the council.

“The only thing I have is, and I was approached by three different couples over the phone and I even had one visit my house and I hate to bring it up about the fireworks that have been going off lately. It's raising heck with their dogs and everything,” Humphrey said.

Humphrey informed those citizens that he was not on the council any longer but promised to bring their concerns before the governing body. In addressing the council, Humphrey referenced the town ordinance governing the use, etc. of fireworks within the town, said ordinance signed into law July 5. 1990 by then Mayor Harvey Humphrey.

“Harv, I had offered to send some letters with a copy of the ordinance to the people that were setting off the fireworks, but nobody could confirm who was actually doing it,” said Town Clerk, Toni McNamar.

It was decided that a copy of the ordinance would be sent out with the utility bills and a copy would be put up in the post office, the bank and the library.

“That's all I got. I just wanted to bring that up because I told them I would and with that, Gentleman, I'm going to leave you. I want to thank you very much, for the privilege of working with you and for the town. I've enjoyed every minute of it, and I know the town's in good hands,” Humphrey said.

“It's been an honor to have been able to work with you for so long, Harv,” Johnstone said.

“It's all been enjoyable,” Humphrey said.

“I propose that we don't let him go,” Bastian said.

“Well, I'm goin',” Humphrey said. “Good night, guys.”

With those words Humphrey exited the chambers. He has, however, agreed to stay on as the town's fire marshall.

In other council business, two building permits were approved for a pre-built shed to be erected at 210 S. Main St. and a 10 x 10 storage shed for 222 S. Washington Ave.

The town's ambulance was reported, by the mayor, to be in need of repairs. It has become harder to start. The seal rings on the injectors and the injector pump need replacement. The estimate was almost $3,000 and the council voted to move ahead with repairs, as the mayor assured the council that at some point the ambulance may quit operating at all. The mayor emphasized his point.

“So we don't reach a point of having a patient aboard on the way to the emergency room and the ambulance quits. I don't think any one of us wants to see that,” Bartels said.

In her report, Town Clerk McNamar stated that a problem arose over graduation weekend where those renting the community center had been told to bring their own trash bags, there were no trash cans available for the use by the graduation parties.

“I had four families in there over graduation weekend and no one had garbage cans the whole weekend,” McNamara said.

It was resolved by the council that the garbage cans would be made available in the future.

The only point of disagreement in the discussion over the cans was raised by Councilwoman Betty Nussbaum. She believed that it was inappropriate for the town to charge a fee to use the center.

“On the community center, we just charge a rental deposit. We don't actually rent it out,” McNamara said.

“We just charge a damage deposit and they get it back if they leave it nice and clean,” Bastian said. “That's all, there's no rent,” McNamar said.

“I don't agree with it,” Nussbaum said. “If they sign for it, I think that would be enough.”

“They pay a damage deposit in case somebody in there would catch the carpet on fire, something like that.” Johnstone said. “It's their liability, not ours.”

“I don't agree with it, but whatever” Nussbaum said.

“Well, we've done it for years,” Johnstone said.

During the Utility Board report to the council, Johnstone stated Clerk McNamar had discovered monies that would enable the town to go through with and complete the A-3 well project. McNamar had located the monies in the 2008 sixth-penny funds that amounted to $430,000 which would be enough to complete the project with money left over. On an unanimous vote by the council this project can now move forward.

In the Mayor's report it was learned that Randye Bastian would be on the town's tourism board of directors. Further, the mayor made the following appointments: Betty Nussbaum is appointed as Town Horticulturist, Dennis Bastian will continue as the Cemetery Board Chairman, Judy Johnstone will represent the council on the Utility Board and will be the new Mayor Pro Tem and Rocky Stoner will continue to do Streets and Alleys and will also be the county emergency management representative.

In her report as town horticulturist, Nussbaum reported that the town paid for all the flowers and they were planted around town.

“You'll have to enjoy the flowers. They're really different and I think they all did a super job. The trees around the Main Street have all been trimmed, at the bottom and Harvey saw that the trees were all trimmed in the park along with the Veteran's Park, so that's looking good,” Nussbaum said.

The 2107-18 budget was approved in a roll call vote upon its third and final reading and the the second reading of the town ordinance for the cemetery passed on its second reading and will be read, discussed and possibly approved on its third reading at the next council meeting.

Four quotes for the four hallways in the town hall that are to be refurbished were approved by the council.

The town hall will be closed on June 26 and on the Fourth of July, the next meeting of the Utility Board will be at 6:00 p.m. on July 10 and the council will meet at 7:00 p.m. of the same day.


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