To dish or not to dish, that was the question during Fountain's December city council meeting as members listened to a proposal from Craig Stortz of Stortz Satellite of Canton.

The city is considering satellite television as a replacement for cable since Arvig Cable Systems is withdrawing its services from the city due to low subscribership.

Stortz's proposal would bring high speed Internet and expanded television to Fountain via a connection made by relaying a signal from Preston's water tower to Fountain's.

The city would be responsible for a portion of hardware updates at a cost of approximately $10,000, maintenance and for billing, and Stortz would handle installing necessary equipment for an estimated $28,000 and purchasing the services to be relayed.

The city would be allowed to keep a percentage of the amount it charges Stortz customers - essentially, the city would charge Stortz's base amount plus a surcharge that would garner revenue.

A survey was distributed to all households and businesses in Fountain to gather input on how many people would be interested in television and Internet service and the council will review the results and inform Stortz.

2013 levy and bills

The council approved the 2013 final tax levy, then went on to discuss the commitment of capital improvement funds for the coming fiscal year. The council increased the amount allotted for the park department to $8,410, $15,000 for the street department and $12,600 for the purchase of a city tractor, totaling the amount spent on the tractor in the biennium at $27,600.

The consent agenda included approving the Oct. 4 meeting minutes, the treasurer's report, city monthly bills and fire department bills - with the addition of approval for the purchase of 20 new turnout coats for $90 to $100 each.

Garbage contract

The garbage contract with William Hanson of Chatfield was renewed for another five years, taking into account a 20 cent increase per customer per year.

The council has the option of notifying Hanson in August, or 90 days in advance, if it chooses to engage another hauler's services.

Councilors inquired about holding a citywide cleanup day, as Hanson has been employed to pick up waste in Chatfield on designated days using one truck and two employees to gather waste. However, Hanson advised Fountain's councilors to hold a drop-off day instead to save money since Chatfield's city-funded collection costs approximately $10,000 each year.

He pointed out that the waste collection is not for regular household garbage, but to assist residents in yard and garage cleanup, providing an opportunity for disposal of furniture, tires, computers and televisions, though disposing of tires and appliances will cost residents a fee that is smaller than what they would pay to haul it to a designated site on their own.

Police report

Fountain Police Chief Tom Mosher's November report regarded his radar watch on County Road 8 near the ball field, where he counted 40 cars, nine of which were traveling faster than 40-miles-per-hour in a 30-mile-per-hour zone.

"I wrote two citations - the fastest was doing 49 in a 30, and everybody was local. A lot of them were commuters trying to get to the bus going to Rochester, and I told them to spread the word to slow down on their way to the bus."

Finally, Mosher shared a resident's complaint about a neighbor's dogs getting loose - the chief notified the owner of the cavorting canines and asked that he keep a closer eye on their activities.