By Roger Nichols
For the Sentinel 

City hears 'Wall That Heals' is coming


Roger Nichols

WALL ON THE WAY: Scott Robinson speaks to the City Council Monday night about the Traveling Vietnam Wall coming to the city next year.

The Wall That Heals is coming to Goldendale. That's the biggest news out of Monday's Goldendale City Council meeting, which mostly dealt with routine housekeeping measures. The Wall is a half-size replica of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C. that travels around the country . So far it has visited 400 cities. Scott Robinson told councilors that even at half size, the installation is 240 feet long, assembled from 24 panels. A specially modified 53-foot truck trailer also opens up into an interactive

museum that displays some of the items that have been left at the original monument, and has information about all the names that are on the memorial. Robinson said the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Committee that operates the traveling replica told him it would draw an estimate 4,000 to 10,000 visitors to a town like Goldendale. Councilors had no trouble authorizing $3,750 for half the cost of bringing the replica to town. Earlier, Klickitat County Commissioners had voted to cover the other half of the cost. Robinson told the councilors that it would be in town shortly after next year's

total solar eclipse, which could increase the traffic. He said arrangements have been made to set the exhibit up at the Klickitat County Fairgrounds. In other business, the Council held public hearings on the city's 2017 budget and on accepting the West Columbus neighborhood improvement project, each of which only drew one public comment. Ken McKuen asked what revenue the city collected from water charges and was told it was $1,178,000, and under the hearing for the project, Robertson commented "Looks nice." Under administrator reports, Goldendale Police

Chief Reggie Bartkowki said there had been a number of car prowls lately , including five on the night of Nov . 30, but that police had tracked down three juveniles who admitted responsibility , including the theft of the handgun used in the recent attempted shooting by the library . "We haven't had any reports of car prowls since," he said, "but we are also doing social media and contacting the radio and the newspaper just to remind people that this time of year you've got to make sure to lock those doors, and don't leave valuables where people can seethem. It's just very tempting for someone walking at night time to see something, especially if the door is unlocked, just to grab it." Councilors also approved a resolution to purchase a new copier for the fire department for $6,100, to sign a new two-year contract with the city's Prosecuting Attornery, Gwendolyn Grundei, including a $200-per-month raise, to accept the results of the West Columbus N e i g h b o r h o o d Improvement Project, to declare a house at 430 West Allyn Street surplus property and list it with a local real estate agent, and to accept a grant of $219,852 from the Transportation Improvement Board for an overlay project on South Columbus from downtown out to the intersection with Simcoe

Drive. It was also the first reading of the city's 2017 budget, which will be up for final approval on December 19. City Administrator Larry Bellamy said there had been no changes to what he called "a status quo budget" totaling $7,024,300 since preliminary figures were announced in October. It is a reduction from the 2016 budget of $8,824,600, and just a few dollars less than the $7,064,328.64 actually spent to date on this year's budget. And under public comment, Shonie Schlotzhauer, who was one of the people who showed up at an earlier meeting to protest the belief that the city was pursuing Nestlé for a bottling plant, said she was eager to help the city find good sustainable businesses to relocate to Goldendale. Mayor Mike Canon said he was in discussion with Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Dana Peck on setting up such a committee. Councilors are also held an executive session on real property and union negotiations following the regular meeting.

WALL ON THE WAY: Scott Robinson speaks to the City Council Monday night about the Traveling Vietnam Wall coming to the city next year.


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