Tough year in review

PHOTO BY BENJAMIN CHASE/PLAINSMAN Huron Mayor Gary Harrington speaks during the State of the City Luncheon held Thursday.

HURON — Mayor Gary Harrington presented the grim reality of what 2020 has been due to the COVID-19 virus in his State of the City address Thursday, but he was also positive in the opportunity moving forward.

“Previous economic stressors the city has experienced, they don’t compare to the pandemic,” Harrington stated. “However, our task force group has a saying of ‘stay positive, test negative’ and that’s what we have to focus on right now.”

To open the proceedings, Huron Kiwanis Club president Doug Pietz welcomed all to the event and led the pledge of allegiance before Huron Superintendent of Schools Terry Nebelsick led an opening prayer for the proceedings.

Mike Held, the chair of the Huron Chamber Governmental Affairs Committee, then emceed the rest of the proceedings. He recognized the legislators, candidates, and city and county commissioners in attendance among the crowd.

Angela Christianson introduced the 2020-2021 Leadership Huron class who were in attendance at the meeting.

Harrington did note that the budget went up primarily due to the new water and sewer treatment facility and the expenses related to that.

The retention of police officers was mentioned by Harrington. The incentive program implemented by the Huron Police Department to potentially give new certified officers a $10,000 incentive over the course of their first five years while on the force was laid out by the mayor.

The mayor also mentioned multiple projects around the city, including street projects and water main replacement that have been done throughout the city.

The State of the City luncheon was sponsored by the Huron Kiwanis Club and Huron Chamber Governmental Affairs Committee.

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