Phillips County News - One Nation, Under God

By Mark Hebert

Lawn care and gofers at Council


April 18, 2018

Since the sun has finally started to shine, and grass around Malta will surely turn green again at some point, steps were taken to hire new lawn care professionals to maintain city parks and other areas around the area to replace Ken Ulrich, who did the work for years but passed away last December.

The Malta City Council received three different bids by three different local companies for three different areas around town. After about 15-minutes of discussing the bids, the council ultimately decided to take no action and set up a work meeting to talk more about who will cut grass when and how often the grass will be cut before deciding about hiring crews. Of the three bids received, none was submitted to spray for weeds around town this spring and summer, and Malta Mayor John Demarais said the contract might end up going to TruGreen, a non-local company.

During new business, Marko Manoukian (on behalf of PhillCo Economic Growth Council) talked about obtaining a grant to finish the DEQ cleanup at the old airport south of town where a final document is needed to get the area a clean bill of health (for years, chemicals used to wash planes seeped into the soil, contaminating the area.) The grant application is due by June 15 and if awarded, money could be obtained as early as July.

In unrelated news, Manoukian said he would be willing to help the City of Malta Public Works Director Jim Truelove in his quest to purchase a machine which dispenses carbon monoxide to kill the gofers that are abundant around town.

“They are out, and they are out in pretty good force,” Director Truelove said of the varmints.

Director Truelove said that machine (the Cheetah Rodent Control Machine) allows the user to stick a hose down one gofer hole (other holes are capped during the process) and shoots 2,500 feet in about three minutes. The price tag is $1,370, and Director Trulove said the money could come from three different City funds; sewer, water, and parks, because the machine is needed in the three different departments. Manoukian said that he would contact the “state rodent control guy out of Lewistown” and see what he thought of the machine.

Director Truelove said that steel traps work well, but they are unforgiving if a child gets a limb stuck in one. added that the gumball approach to ridding the city of gofers didn’t work as well as had been hoped and

“The gofers ate a lot of gum last year,” he said.

A motion was passed to purchase the Cheetah Rodent Control Machine pending Manoukian’s findings.


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