Sunday, December 21, 2014
   
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Surveys reveal BBQ challenge successful

Council votes to stay with same health insurance carrier

During the city’s first-ever Pony Express BBQ Challenge, April 26-27 at Lafayette Park, several competitors and judges said they were impressed by the event.

Surveys completed by competitors and judges back up those remarks.

At the May 7 meeting, Gothenburg City Council members perused evaluations that showed judges and competitors ratings on several questions, on a 1 to 10 scale, at 9.8.

For competitors, scores of 10 were given on adequate and reliable electrical power, quiet time and music at a satisfactory level and fun and their desire to return.

The highest scores for judges, 9.8, were responses to whether they had fun and will return and adequate communication regarding event judging.

One of the event organizers, Mike Eberle, said one complaint lodged by a competitor was that he needed better access for television reception for his camper.

Eberle said he was happy with the responses and noted that he’s recruiting already for the 2014 challenge.

Because of such positive feedback, Eberle said he could recruit up to 100 teams, compared to 48 this year, to come to Gothenburg if they opened up the Lake Helen area.

He added that some of the competitors spent a week in Gothenburg and others stayed at local motels and bought gas, food and other supplies in Gothenburg.

On other matter, the council renewed the city employee health insurance plan with Corporate Plan Management, the previous carrier, and voted to continue putting money into a side fund at 95%.

The side fund pays for the first $20,000 claims per employee after which the reinsurance (Corporate Plan Management) pays.

Local insurance agent Dan Yancy said the side fund currently totals $369,000 after dipping to $80,000 three to four years ago when employee claims were high.

Dan Yancy said premiums would increase only 1.6%

When asked how the new federal health care law would affect health insurance, Yancy said he didn’t know.

He did say that individuals or companies will be able to buy insurance from a state or federal pool or stay with a standard health plan.

In other business, the council:

approved the appointment of Mike Farr to the Gothenburg Volunteer Fire Department.

learned the dumpsters the city provides during Clean City Week in April were not as full as in previous year and the city had more control over what kind of refuse citizens brought thanks to city employees policing the area on weekends.

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