HJ/EDMay 22, 2006

New Germany clerk resigns

By Dave Cox
Staff Writer

The New Germany City Council reluctantly accepted the resignation of City Clerk Shelly Quaas during Wednesday’s council meeting.

Council members initially joked with Quaas about not letting her leave, but ultimately said they understood her reasons for moving on.

“It was one of the most difficult decisions I have had to make,” Quaas said.

Quaas was hired as New Germany’s city clerk in November 2000.

“It has been a wonderful experience, but I am just burned out,” she said of her six years as clerk.

Prior to accepting the job in New Germany, Quaas worked for the City of Minnetrista for seven years.

Quaas said that she plans to stay and train her replacement, but urged the council to begin the recruiting process immediately.

“I won’t leave you hanging, but I am not going to stay around forever, either,” Quaas commented.

Planning commission member Pete Pederson said that Quaas has been doing. “about five jobs, and much of what she has to deal with is negative.”

Council Member Steve VanLith agreed that Quaas has had to spend a lot of time listening to complaints, and said that people who have complaints should bring them to the council, rather than complaining to the city clerk.

Pederson said there are many good things going on in the city, and people should focus on those things.

“We need a positive attitude in New Germany,” Pederson commented.

“This is an exciting time,” VanLith said. He mentioned Black Forest Estates and other developments that are being planned in the city.

“There will be some headaches, but it is an exciting time for the city.” VanLith said.

Warning siren

The council heard a presentation on an outdoor warning siren by Tom Green of Frontline Plus Fire and Rescue.

Green said his company has been selling outdoor warning systems for more than 20 years.

The company sells Whelen warning sirens, which are unique because they have all electronic components, Green said.

This is an advantage in the case of a power outage, Green said, the siren can still be activated because the system uses two 12-volt batteries.

The life expectancy of the batteries is four to five years, according to Green.

There is an optional charging system that includes two 80-watt solar panels, making it possible to install the system in locations where electricity is not available.

Green said that he sells some sirens that have a public address capability, but the unit he is quoting for New Germany is a tones-only model because of cost considerations.

The sirens can be activated either locally by the fire chief or other designated person, or remotely, from the county.

Green stressed that these sirens are outdoor warning devices, and said that residents may not be able to hear them when they are indoors, especially if they have windows closed and air conditioners running or music playing.

The council did not take any action on the siren, because it has a presentation from another company scheduled for the next council meeting.

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