The Belmond Public Works Department has six regular full-time employees and four part-time employees who are responsible for a multitude of services to the community. There are six divisions which include: Airport, Cemetery, Parks (see separate Parks web page), Sanitary Sewers & Wastewater Treatment Plant, Streets & Storm Sewers and Water Treatment & Distribution.


The employees are assigned primary tasks but can find themselves needed in another area. Pitching in and helping out wherever and whenever needed is necessary to keeping the taxes as low as they are in Belmond. Below you will find a description of each of the divisions and the tasks to be carried out in order to serve the public.

There are a couple of services provided to the citizens that are not necessarily assigned to any one division. For instance, the city sponsors/provides the brush/limb and grass/leaf piles as an extra service to the residents to collect yard waste. These areas are
monitored closely because the Iowa Department of



Natural Resources (IDNR) has specific rules about how such public yard waste collection areas can operate. The slightest of violations will cause the IDNR to fine the city and close down the collection site. IDNR would then determine if the city would be able to make necessary changes to open the facility back up or close it down permanently. So please follow the rules we have established so that the collection facility can remain open.


Airport

The Belmond Municipal Airport is identified by the Iowa Aviation System Plan as a Basic Service II airport. The airport serves the general aviation needs of northeast Wright County and does not offer any fixed-base operator (FBO) services with a hangar for storage of four aircraft, which was built in 1979. The airport does not have fuel available. The main use of the airport is for emergency medical use and medical transport.

The airport has one turf runway: 17/35, which is 3245 feet in length and 95 feet wide. Low intensity edge and threshold lights are in place. There is a lighted, paved helipad and lighted wind indicator. There are also two tie-down spaces on an unpaved surface.

Airside Facilities

Existing

Airport Reference Code

A-II

Primary Runway Length

3,245 (turf)

Primary Runway Width

95'

Taxiway

Exits

Approach

Visual

Runway Lighting

LIRL

Taxiway Lighting

No

Approach Aids

No

Visual Guidance Slope Indicators (VGSI)

No

Runway End Identifier Lights (REIL)

No

Rotating Beacon

No

Lighted Wind Indicator

Yes

RCO Facilities

No

Pavement Strength

Turf

Landside

Existing

Covered Storage

4

Aircraft Apron

Turf

Terminal/Admin Building

No

Auto Parking

Unimproved

Fencing

No

Storage

No

Fuel

No

FBO

No

Ground Transportation

No

Food Services

No

Phone

Yes

Restroom

No

Pilot Lounge

No


While no one employee is assigned to work at the airport, there is maintenance to be done in the form of mowing, clearing snow and changing light bulbs. The city has also been put on notice that new Homeland Security measures seemingly enacted for larger airports apply to the Belmond Municipal Airport and must be enforced. The city currently contracts with a local turf management firm for the mowing of the runway. For further information call City Hall at (641) 444-3386.

Cemetery

History

In 1857, as Belmond was being developed on the east side of the river, a two-acre plot of land was purchased near Franklin Grove for a cemetery. This was established in the name of the Belmond Cemetery Association.

Fifteen years later, in 1872, two more acres were purchased. From time to time more acres were added, two acres at a time.

Each time additions were purchased, old fences were torn out and new ones were built. The Cemetery Association built an iron fence in 1889 with donations of money and labor. Later in 1894 a tool house was built on "a solid foundation".

The Association collected $1 per year for weeding and mowing. Neglected lots of non-residents were cared for by the Cemetery Association beginning in 1898. Forty Cypress Trees were planted on the outer edge of the cemetery property that year as well.

More land was purchased in 1916. In 1920 the Cemetery Association was asked to furnish the grading and gravel for a sidewalk that would lead from town to the cemetery on the west side of the road (now call Luick's Lane). One citizen donated the construction of the sidewalk while another citizen gave the gravel and hauling.

A Cemetery Aid Society was established in 1922 to "beautify the cemetery". Through the Society, cemetery roads were paved, iron seats and urns were purchased and brick gate pillars were erected for the entrance driveways. The driveways were widened and entrance pillars were removed in 1949 and 1957 to allow for the wider vehicles.

On May, 5, 1952 the Belmond Cemetery Association turned over its assets to the City Council. Under the City's ownership another 2.2 acres was purchased in 1956, a new tool shed was built in the 1960s and 4.5 acres were purchased in 1983.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Auxiliary built a Veterans Memorial display in the cemetery as well.

Five additions have been made to the original cemetery, which now totals 17.5 acres of land.

Present Activities
The duties relating to the cemetery are split between a number of employees.

Two part-time workers are hired from roughly April through November to maintain the cemetery, primarily providing grounds keeping such as mowing, weed-eating, seeding and overseeing a contractor to level stones and complete minor repairs. The Deputy City Clerk in City Hall sells the lots, process the deeds and files the paperwork with the Iowa Insurance Division. The city is currently selling lots from only the Second Memorial Addition. All six Public Works full-time employees take turns digging graves and filling them in after burial.

If you should have any questions, the best place to start is in City Hall at (641)444-3386.

Sanitary Sewers and Wastewater Treatment Plant

Sewer Maintenance As well as operation and maintenance of the Wastewater Treatment Plant the Sewer division maintains approximately 28 miles of sanitary sewer, and 4 lift stations throughout the City of Belmond. Catch basin and manhole repair, jetting, flushing and cleaning the lines are also part of this division's tasks. The division also contracts for televised inspection of lines.

Wastewater Treatment Plant History
The existing wastewater treatment facility was originally constructed as a trickling filter plant with anaerobic sludge digestion in 1956. It was upgraded in 1981 with the construction of two primary clarifiers, rotating biological contactors (RBCs), additional final clarifier and aerobic sludge holding basin. The trickling filter was abandoned and demolished in 1981.

The plant was improved again in 1995 with the construction of additional RBCs for nitrification (ammonia removal) and an additional anaerobic sludge digester. The old digester was converted to a digested sludge storage tank.

While minor renovations or improvements are made to the plant as funding is available the plant is operating near the rated design CBOD capacity and is consistently in compliance with the discharge permit limits. The city has made extensive renovations to the plant including replacing the RBCs with Activated Sludge for the main processing of waste along with aeration basins and new final clarifiers.

One employee is assigned to the wastewater treatment plant to maintain the entire plant and the four lift stations on the system. In addition to the preventative maintenance and repair duties on the plant, this employee is held responsible for performing all sampling, testing and reporting requirements as directed by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Streets & Storm Sewers

History

On September 12, 1917, the Belmond newspaper reported the new Wilson Highway from Des Moines to Minneapolis would be marked. The mark was to be painted on telephone poles and would be a white background over which a red letter "W" was to be painted. Belmond was on this highway, later renamed Highway 15. Prior to this roads were maintenance by "Belmond's street commissioner" and funded through poll taxes, automobile license fees and fuel taxes.

Roads have changed through the years as well as the funding for them. Gravel roads were a luxury in the 1920's. The Belmond City Council approved the paving of several of Belmond's streets 13 years prior to the paving of Highway 69, in 1920. The paving of 40 blocks was completed by October 24, 1920.

The original street names for Belmond were changed in 1921.

More street construction began on July 8, 1940 when some of the streets were widen. Throughout Belmond's history sidewalks were as big a concern as the streets. New sidewalks were a park of the 1940 project along with new street lighting.

Additional improvements were made to Main Street in 1964 while 50 blocks throughout Belmond were paved in the summer of 1968. Main Street received another coat of asphalt in 1978. In 1992 the city did a complete reconstruction of Main Street in the business district.

In recent years the city has finished the re-construction and replacement of underground utilities on First Street NE from River Avenue N to 3rd Avenue NE; First Avenue NE from East Main Street to First Street NE; First Street SE from River Avenue S to 4th Avenue SE; and, First Street SE from 800 block of First Street SE to Luick's Lane S.

Future projects will include (but not be limited to): the intervening part of First Street SE, Third Street NE, 4th Avenue from 5th Street SE to 3rd Street NE; and, 3rd Avenue NE from the alley north of East Main Street to 3rd Street NE.

Three employees are assigned to do the work in this area on a regular basis.

Street sweeping

Parking lines painting

Equipment maintenance and repair

Trimming trees overhanging the right-of-ways and removal of dead or diseased trees in the city right of way

Maintain the storm sewer collection systems

Snow removal

Signage repairs, updates and additions

Surface maintenance of streets and alleys

Assist all other divisions with maintenance issues and emergencies


The Street Department facilities are located at 519 2nd Avenue SE.


Water Treatment and Distribution

The city has built a new water plant in west Belmond, on “the hill”. It is a plant capable of producing finished water at a rate of 1150 gallons per minute. It is again a lime softening plant which Belmond has had since 1911 with alum added as a coagulant aid. Chemical addition includes sulfuric acid for pH control, chlorine gas for disinfection. Built into the new plant is water storage of 330,000 gallons of water. This gives Belmond fire water capacity of 830,000 gallons. The plant is built with much added processing capacity to easily handle a major industrial user.

The processing includes a backwash reclaim tank. The backwash water is settled with the clear water returned to the system, and the sludge pumped to waste. The lime sludge is hauled by truck to a city owned lagoon. The lagoon has significant capacity with no need for dredging and land application of sludge anticipated by staff within the next ten years.

Water is supplied to the plant by two 700' deep wells and has a capacity to pump 16,500,000 gallons of water per day. All of the water pumped through the plant has natural fluoridation for dental health in the raw water.

The City has two elevated storage tanks. One of the elevated tanks, known as the west tower, has a capacity of 200,000 gallons while the second elevated storage tank known as the south tower has a capacity of 300,000 gallons. The west tower was constructed in the 1960's and the south tower in 1976. These towers have epoxy coated finish with no known issues of lead paint. Both towers are inspected annually with major repairs and painting completed in 2007.


The City of Belmond has a distribution system consisting of ductile iron and PVC water main. A majority of the water main is of the 4" size, but 6" and 8" are present. The industrial park in the City of Belmond contains 12" and 14" water main. The water distribution system is maintained by the city.


The city has replaced residential and commercial water meters with radio read meters. These meters have resulted in more accurate water usage records for all users.

One employee works in this area. In addition to the work relating to the maintenance and operations of the water treatment facility and distribution system, the employee also responds to and makes appropriate marks for Iowa One Call and other locates and performs all sampling, testing and reporting requirements as directed by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the Environmental Protection Agency including the Annual Consumer's Confidence Report.