ILWACO - Starting off last week's Ilwaco City Council meeting, Mayor Ed Leonard reported that the state auditor's office had "expressed complete satisfaction" during its annual audit of the city, but suggested that the city "pay a bit more attention to detail."

Leonard said he would have had a copy of the audit for the members of the council but he had to send the report back to the auditor's office because it said "we were a city of 3,000, were located in Grays Harbor County and got the mayor's name wrong."

The Washington Department of Transportation told Leonard that a 3-inch top coat would be placed on Spruce Street. "After much coordination and discussion, primarily by Randy LaVold (the city's operations supervisor) on behalf of the city, we're told DOT will 'grind' the street down before paving," he said. "This will eliminate our concern that the street would have been higher than the sidewalks."

An item that led to much discussion by Ilwaco residents during past weeks has been resolved, Leonard said. Representatives of CenturyTel had said there wasn't enough money in their budget to remove the power poles on Howerton and put the lines in the new underground conduits.

"For reasons unknown," Leonard said, "we learned several weeks ago the money had been diverted to a different project and that the lines would remain on poles until next year. Milt Gudgell and (Port of Ilwaco Manager) Mack Funk took up the cause. I'm still not completely sure what they did but I received an e-mail Friday saying that CenturyTel has made arrangements to pull the cable into the conduits on Howerton Way." This means the cables will go underground and PUD will remove the poles. Leonard thanked Gudgell and Funk for their efforts.

Leonard reported that paving of First Street is slated to begin April 1 and "if the weather holds we should be able to have the Loyalty Day children's parade on First Street and Howerton." He added that the annual Black Lake Fishing Derby would be Saturday, April 26 from 7 a.m. to noon.

Leonard and Long Beach Mayor Dale Jacobson attended a judicial district reallocation meeting in South Bend two weeks ago, he said. "At the meeting it was resolved to recommend that the county commissioners consolidate the two district courts into one district with two divisions. This will simplify transfering cases between the two district courts should a judge be unable to hear a case."

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