Because the idea of a dog park within Mannel Park didn't sit well with nearby residents, the city will replace the state's contribution for the park's shade project and eliminate that component from the plan.
Tuesday night, the City Council approved a budget amendment to move $75,000 from the American Rescue Plan Act to the Mannel Park Shade Structure project. The project, including a dog par, was previously going to be funded by a grant from the state. But because of concerns from residents living nearby, the council removed the dog park from the project. Officials advised the city that the dog park was a main component and the reason for the approval of the funds. The council then decided to go forward with the project using other monies, dropping the grant funds from the project.
At their regular meeting, the council also gave a proclamation to the Shafter Striders, a local running club that includes children from age 6 to 18.
The group traveled to Knoxville, Tenn.. to compete in the AAU Cross Country National Championships. The teams participated in different age divisions, with a 6U team, 7-8 year old team, and 11-12 year old team. The teams placed second and third, respectively. There also were runners who won individual awards, with Ryan Gonzalez getting a top 25 finish, as well as Delilah Volkoff, who was a top 25 finisher in the 7-8 year old division.
Ezekiel Arguello won a top 25 position in the 6U division, as did Theo Loeza. And Roberto Rodriguez, in the 7-8 year old division, won an All-American Medal, as well as the team award.
The club practices and competes all fall, with regular competitions throughout the county and district.
The council also recognized former Planning Commissioners Ron Nunlist and Bob Wiebe. Both men decided to step down after their terms expired this past year. They were replaced with Lovedeep Joshan and David Puizer. Nunlist and Wiebe were thanked for their service to the community and their contributions in moving the city forward.
With the election of Gustavo Olvera to the Shafter City Council, his place on the Planning Commission was left open. City Clerk Yasmin Pallares said that Bob Wiebe had stepped up and offered his services for the remaining two years on that term on the Planning Commission. After little discussion, the council thanked Mr. Wiebe for stepping up and appointed him to fill the term.