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Council votes to replace bulbs in snowflake decorations

The Austin City Council unanimously approved the use of $2,500 from the City’s contingency budget to replace light bulbs in the City’s snowflake Christmas decorations during its regular meeting Monday evening.

The City has received comments from the general public regarding the condition of the existing Christmas decorations. The Council hoped to address the issue further; however, because the COVID-19 pandemic has caused uncertainty about the budget, the City’s Christmas decorations are not high priority.

The existing lighted snowflakes are in excess of 10 years old. City Engineer Steven Lang recommended the $2,500 expenditure with the goal of getting an additional five years of use from the decorations.

Council forwards vote on Nature Center goats

The Austin City Council approved a motion to forward a vote on allowing goats at the Jay C. Hormel Nature Center during its Monday evening work session.

If approved, the Nature Center would be allowed to hold a free trial use of goats for the purpose of removing woody invasive species. The goats would be kept in an appropriately signed low-voltage electric fence enclosure.

Austin Parks and Recreation Director Kevin Nelson asked the Council for approval. The Austin Parks and Recreation Board gave its approval for the trial run during its most recent meeting.

Nelson said the enclosure would not be a petting zoo.

The Council will officially vote on the measure during its next regular meeting on Sept. 8.