Niland’s Café Manager Sandii Kelley plans to leave her position in the near future, possibly by the end of the calendar year. She informed the City Council last night so they can begin a search for another tenant. Kelley suggested that the council offer a room at the Colo Motel as well as employment managing the café to anyone interested. Kelley also mentioned that when she came on seven years ago, there were very few rooms booked, but now with the publication of books on both the Lincoln and Jefferson Highways, people from across the country and even around the world have booked lodging. The Colo Motel is the only lodging between Iowa Falls and Altoona and between Marshalltown and Nevada, so she thinks Colo has an opportunity to promote the city, along with the uniqueness of the Reed-Niland Corner being the only standing gas station/motel/lodging stop from the early highway era on either highway.
After discussion over the past several months, the council has decided not to pursue purchasing the Wilson Auction House on Main Street.
In fire department news, Colo Fire Department Chief Dennis Clatt told the council that it’s possible Story County may receive a grant for communications from FEMA, with most departments in the county desiring to be part of the grant. This could drop the city’s cost to around 10 percent of the original $85,000 estimate if the grant is not received. The county will find out whether the funds have been granted in the spring of 2019.
Colo Library Director Joanie Jamison told the council and public that a book sale will take place at the library on Nov. 1 and 2. Jamison and other area library directors will be attending a meeting with local police and fire department personnel to discuss safety at libraries, especially when there may be only one staff member working at a location.
Next Friday, Oct. 12, Coffee and Conversation will feature a readers’ theatre by fifth and sixth grade students of Colo-NESCO.
In other news, Story County Sheriff’s deputy Jordan Matthews told the council to be on the lookout for marijuana devices disguised as legal vape pens. These devices have been circulating at schools around the area. A West Marshall student will be working with City Clerk Amy Kohlwes on updating the city’s website. Council Member Rod Spalding apologized to whomever complained to the Iowa Department of Transportation about dirt on the streets, but there were no violations or tickets issued to the co-op as the complaint alleged.
Colo-NESCO Superintendent Jim Walker wants someone from City Council to be part of a committee to plan for hazardous situations that may/may not involve the school.
The next city council meeting will take place on Nov. 5 at 7 p.m.