Eagan officials are seeking public feedback on what should be done with the Sperry Water Tower, a longtime fixture on Towerview Road near Pilot Knob Road.
The tower, built in 1967, hasn't held water since 2009 but produces about $150,000 a year in revenue from several cellphone providers that rent space on it for their antennas. The City Council learned last May that the tower needs repairs that will cost $500,000 to $600,000.
The council wants to decide whether to preserve and repair the tower or demolish it and build a new tower at a lower cost that could be used by the cellphone companies. The issue is complicated by some residents' views that the water tower, the first constructed in Eagan, is a landmark.
Eagan residents and employees of Eagan businesses are asked to take a short survey at www.surveymonkey.com/s/WBVRHFW. The survey will be open to the public until Feb. 4, and the council will review the results Feb. 11.
City will look at ways to shore up quarry reservoir
Burnsville plans to spend as much as $100,000 from its storm water utility fund to study the ways it could reduce the potential for hazardous materials spilling into the city's surface water intake reservoir at Edward Kraemer & Sons limestone quarry on Cliff Road.
Underground water rises to the surface during the quarrying process, allowing the city to pump 4 million gallons a day for city use. The quarry water is combined with water from 17 municipal wells and treated for drinking.
In 2013, Burnsville pumped about 1.2 billion gallons of water from the surface water reservoir — about a third of the total water used by the city — and it's considered a critical source of water for the future.
The goal of the study is to identify what might be built to reduce the risk of spills entering the water.
The city plans to use consultants for about half of the project to help identify options and design construction plans for the solutions selected.
Donations to pay for benches, ballfield work
Several private donations to the city of Burnsville were accepted by the City Council last week.
They include five donations in the value of $650 for benches at the Burnsville Performing Arts Center from the Burnsville Visual Arts Society, the Ed Delmoro family, Dick Manley, Pete Schulte, and the Burnsville Noon Rotary.
The Burnsville Baseball Association donated 5,000 for the renovation of Alimagnet Ballfield.
Trails by Candlelight event is Feb. 8
More than 1,500 luminaries will light the way for nighttime activities at the Trails by Candlelight event from 6 to 9 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 8, at Lebanon Hills Regional Park, 860 Cliff Road.
The event features candlelight hiking, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing and an illuminated sledding hill. Schulze Lake will also be lit with candlelight for ice skating.
Cross-country skis and snowshoes will be available for rent. People must bring their own sleds and ice skates.
Nine bonfires will be burning throughout the evening. Hot concessions will be available for purchase from The Tot Boss, RA MacSammy's, and Sandy's Grill and Italian Ice.
The cost for the event is $8 per person if registered by Feb. 7 or $10 per person at the door. The event is free for children age 5 and younger.
Lebanon Hills, 860 Cliff Road, Eagan, will have free on-site parking. There will also be free off-site parking at Woodcrest Church, 525 Cliff Road, Eagan, with a complimentary shuttle to the park starting at 5:45 p.m.
Volunteers are needed to help light candles before the event and perform other tasks during the event. Volunteers receive free admission and a hot meal. To learn more about volunteering, visit www.signupgenius.com/go/60B054CA9AF2CAA8-trails.
For more information or to register to attend, see www.dakotacounty.us/parks and search Trails by Candlelight or call 952-891-7000.
Tax preparation help available at libraries
The Dakota County Library is offering programs to help with tax preparation for adults who earn $52,000 or less a year.
Tax assistance is available to seniors, adults and families. Sessions will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursdays from Feb. 6 to April 10 at the Burnhaven Library, 1101 W. County Road 42, Burnsville. Registration is required; call 952-891-0300.
At Galaxie Library, 14955 Galaxie Av., Apple Valley, assistance will be offered from 2 to 6 p.m. Feb. 13 and 27 and March 6 and 13, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 8 and 22 and March 1. Registration is not required for the Galaxie sessions. They are are provided on a first-come, first-served basis.
For more information, see www.dakotacounty.us/library and search "tax preparation" or call 651-450-2918.
LAURIE BLAKE and SUSAN FEYDER