Town Of Fairview Sees Progress In 2023

Fairview Mayor Brian Bieber, who is in his second year of his second four-year term, is pleased with the progress the town has made over the past year, but there is always more to accomplish. Along with City Council members Patricia Rose, Gerald Baxter, Mike Shannon, Kevin Dahl, Betty Cherrey, and Brian Renville as well as town clerk, Faye Carlson and office assistant Mary Norgard, Bieber has seen many positive developments.

Phase II of the water main replacement project was completed in 2023, with just the asphalt patching left to finish up in the spring. That four-year project has now eliminated all the cast iron water lines in town. Next on the agenda is street and curb repair with the help of the Street Maintenance District, which was formed two years ago. The hope is to tie some of that in with the asphalt repairs while the crews are here. A sewer project needs to be done, as well, with some manholes and lines to be replaced. That will begin next construction season.

Bieber explained that the new water tower is still in the planning stages, but construction should begin in 2025. He said the process is a long one with building permits, environmental concerns, DEQ, engineering, and more. The new tower will be higher and just west of the current one. The increased height should provide 8-10 lbs. more water pressure for residents. With the cost of the project at $1.4 million, the town is looking for grants to help with the expense. "Now that our rates are up to where the state thinks are sufficient, we are eligible for some state money, but it will still cost the town a considerable amount," Bieber said.

Plans call for more sidewalks both around and through Sharbono Park to increase access for handicapped individuals. The town is looking into state grants to help pay for that much-needed project.

Because Fairview is a two state town, funds sometimes come from both Montana and North Dakota. McKenzie County paid for about half the new ambulance barn since Fairview provides service to Yellowstone Township. "They were very generous," Bieber said. "And Richland County was very helpful as well."

Like most small towns, Fairview is still looking to hire more police officers. The new hire, Jake Atkins, is currently at the academy and Whitney Hergert is serving as interim chief. "It's a nationwide problem," Bieber said. More EMTs are also desperately needed. "Waiting for an ambulance to come from Sidney can be really critical," Bieber stated.

The development of the Fairview website is exciting. Bieber said it's been a slow process but Faye (Carlson) has been doing a really good job with it along with her regular duties as town clerk. The addition of RTC is a positive development as well. They have been busy putting in fiber optic cable all over town and their new building should be completed soon. Both schools in Fairview are looking great with the East Fairview School having just completed their major remodel.

Other highlights in 2023 included the Warrior football team becoming state champions. "That was quite a feat," Bieber said. "We're all really proud of them." The annual Old Timers' Festival and the Lighting of the Bridge went well with people having a lot of fun at both those major events.

Bieber is proud of the town of Fairview. "Fairview is a good community. Everyone comes together and they help where they can. If there's something like a medical benefit, everyone contributes. You don't see that in a big city where people don't know each other. With everything going on in the world, Fairview is a pretty nice place to live."

 

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