Royal City to have two site visits in near future

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ROYAL CITY — The Royal City Council was informed by Royal City Public Works director John Lasen that the city is receiving two site visits. The Department of Ecology will be collecting data to renew the city’s sewer permit, while the other site visit will make sure the city is not using underground fuel storage tanks.

“They will be checking to make sure our insurance is up to date and that I am still the maintenance person,” said Lasen.

Lasen said that these inspections will continue to happen every three to five years until the city takes the tanks out of the ground. If the city ever decides to remove the tanks, they will need to find outside sources of funding. The removal process will involve not only removing the tanks, but testing the ground around them to detect if any leakage occurred while the tanks were in use. If leakage is found, then the contaminated ground will have to be removed.

“It’s something I’d like to avoid,” said Lasen.

Lasen also told the council that Avista will be using the area next to the Royal City park as a staging ground to replace poles damaged by the Highway 243 fire. The area will be watered down periodically to keep the dust to a minimum.

“I don’t want a dust bowl,” Lasen said.

Avista will be out of the area prior to Summerfest. Lasen reported that street repairs are continuing, but are going slowly.

“Street repairs are hard with three people,” said Lasen.

Lasen has been spending a large amount of time helping the Catholic Charities daycare. He said there was no way that only two people could do the project. The repairs will continue as he has time.

“We’ll keep chipping away until it’s done,” Lasen said.

The UV sewer treatment project has hit a bit of a snag. The manufacturer is potentially holding up the project by not sending the equipment and software.

“I told them that we put the order in months ago,” Lasen told the council. “They’ve had plenty of time to get it done.”

Lasen is hoping that this will not affect the installation timeline for the contractor.

Police Chief Darin Smith reported that he has returned to work for a few hours a day after breaking his elbow.

“It is a little sore and stiff,” Smith said. “I’m not driving. The guys are doing okay. The county is helping out.”

Smith also discussed the city’s police calls for the past few weeks. Two items were of interest to the council. One was an assault with a knife. It is currently under investigation, but at this point police aren’t sure if the report is true. The other was eluding a police vehicle. A van reportedly successfully fled from the city’s new police officer. The council gave the officer some slack however, as it was his first time in this situation. He was working alone at the time of the incident and was unable to call for backup.

Council member Tiffany Workinger mentioned that the walking path along Widmer Drive is difficult to use. Mayor Kent Andersen said that the path has been eroded over time by rain. He reported going to the area during a “thunder buster.”

“It was a stream,” Andersen said.

Workinger said that the path is used by children walking to school.

Rachal Pinkerton may be reached via email at

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