NC Council turns down beautification proposal

Julie Davis
Nebraska City News-Press

It’s back to the drawing board for the Nebraska City Flower Committee.

The Nebraska City City Council failed to pass a resolution during its Aug. 2 meeting that would have approved the use of $64,000 in Nebraska City Economic Development Plan Growth Funds over four years to beautify and maintain the downtown bumpouts along Central Avenue.

A grant agreement submitted to the council by the Nebraska City Flower Committee called for the expenditure of $10,000 this year, and subsequent dispersements of $18,000 in January 2022, January 2023, and January 2024.

The council’s decision came after a public hearing on the matter, during which Doug Grimm of Grimm’s Gardens outlined the bumpout work he has conducted so far this summer.

He told the council he was looking for a “wow factor” for downtown pedestrians and motorists, which he believes can be provided by annuals, which “look beautiful from the day they are planted until they freeze out.”

Grimm said the bumpout project got a late start this summer and “we got what we could and did the best we could with what we had.”

DeAnn Michel of the Nebraska City Grimm’s Gardens location said she had both visitors and residents stop and talk to her about the bumpout project at different times she has been working on it this summer.

“It’s just another thing that makes Nebraska City special,” she said.

While council members did not question the overall improvement in the look of downtown with the refreshed bumpouts, there was some question about the project’s cost.

Nebraska City Parks and Recreation Commissioner Patrick Wehling asked what happened to a plan discussed during the May 17 Nebraska City City Council meeting to have downtown business owners take over the maintenance of the bumpouts.

Nebraska City Public Works Commissioner Paul Davis questioned the planning process for this year’s bumpout care and noted that the price tag “was a little bit hard to swallow.”

During the meeting, the council also instructed staff to continue drafting an agreement form for animal impound services between the city and a local veterinarian.

The next regularly scheduled Nebraska City City Council meeting is set for 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 16, in the Gary White Memorial Room of the Rowe Memorial Public Safety Complex, 1518 Central Ave.

The Nebraska City City Council failed to pass a resolution during its Aug. 2 meeting that would have approved the use of $64,000 in Nebraska City Economic Development Plan Growth Funds over four years to beautify and maintain the downtown bumpouts along Central Avenue.