Chris Belfield, Board member of Two Harbors Community Radio Station KTWH, spoke to the Silver Bay City Council on Monday to inform them of the station’s plan to expand from a low to a full power station. KTWH (99.5 FM) is a listener supported station and has been in service for around 8 years. They currently operate at 100 watts which gives the station a broadcast radius of 7 to 10 miles. The plan is to expand to 20,000 watts which will greatly increase their broadcast reach along the North Shore including Silver Bay and beyond. Belfield stated that KTWH encourages intergenerational, grassroots participation and provides its listeners with local news coverage, information about community and school events, emergency management information and opportunities for creative arts expression. The Station also offers training for people interested in learning about broadcast production and has had students from Two Harbors High School involved in production and broadcast activities. As KTWH is listener supported and funded, Belfield simply asked council members to help get information out to the community. KTWH will continue to operate in their current capacity while staff are researching grants to help with the costs of the expansion. When the expansion is complete the station will move from their current dial location of 99.5 FM, to 88.3 FM. Folks who live outside the station’s current broadcast area can listen in at ktwh.org.
A public informational meeting is scheduled for July 25th at 6:30 at City Hall. Development for Silver Bay’s downtown projects will be on the agenda. Some residents have questioned the degree to which development plans are geared toward tourism and are concerned about how that emphasis may impact property taxes and the cost of living in the area. Be that as it may, residents of Silver Bay are encouraged to be at the meeting on the 25th. Your understanding of and involvement in development projects is important.
Like cities all across the state, Silver Bay has aging sanitary sewers that likely need maintenance and may need replacement. The Council accepted a recommendation from Bolton & Menk to have Great Lakes Pipe Services inspect sewer lines. This will be done by video inspection which will allow for locating any damaged lines and will also help with cleaning roots and other obstructions from the system. Lead service lines are also going to be assessed. The Department of Health has ordered that all public water services in the state take inventory of their water systems. A grant from the Federal DNR will help cover the cost of this assessment.
The Silver Bay Library has received a $10,000 grant to aid in the current renovation project. The $1 million project will be funded almost entirely by grants and, when completed, will feature improved ADA accessibility, a new entrance and roof, improved parking and the addition of meeting rooms.
City Attorney Timothy Costley would like to have an attorney from the Twin Cities look over the documents pertaining to TIF funding for the Boathouse Bay development. Costley said that having an attorney who has expertise in TIF funding will help give clarity to city administrators moving forward. The Council approved Costley’s request.
Finally, Mayor Wade LeBlanc commended all of the city staff and volunteers for their efforts to make Bay Days a rousing success. He also commented on the great turnout for last week’s Music In The Park event. The next concert will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, July 21st and will feature the Tommy Bentz Band.
The next Council meeting is scheduled for Monday, August 7th at 7:00 p.m.