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Local News

Lee Hays, director of Hastings Department of Public Services Monday gave an overview of improvements planned for Tyden Park to the Hastings City Council.

A new gathering area is being proposed around the existing Civil War soldier's monument at the entrance to the park. A 40 foot by 40 foot area is planned with stamped concrete.

The project is expected to cost $15,000 with funding from the Park and Recreation Capital Improvements fund.

Hays said the work will be contracted out, and when completed, the veteran's monuments now on the Barry County Courthouse lawn will be moved to the new gathering area.

Hays is working with the Lawrence J. Bauer American Legion Post members on the project, and will come back to the council with a formal request for the addition.

Councilwoman Brenda McNabb-Stange drew the ire of Mayor Frank Campbell when she objected to the idea of a memorial as being a "surprise" without it being "openly talked about" and with "no proper process" to bring it to the council.

When Campbell said her use of the word "sneaking" the project in was "so far from the truth," McNabb-Stange agreed it was a poor choice of words on her part and apologized.

Campbell said he and others started work on the Tyden Park plan in 2010 when an idea to move the monument to the courthouse lawn was quashed.

They started the planning, but with the death of Mayor Bob May, the idea went dormant.

Campbell reminded McNabb-Stange that he talked about the memorial during his State of the City address. He asked the council to work to get the memorial in place before the end of this year when he will retire from public office.

"(Hastings) is the only city in the county, and it does not have a dedicated veteran's memorial...It's something we should have done 30 years ago. It's the obligation of Hastings to do this.

"They served their country, they deserve our respect. I want to see it done before I leave office and I hope I have 100 percent support from this council."

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