News Flash

City News

Posted on: February 1, 2024

Rus Leads City Street Care for 35 Years

A man drives large vehicle

No one knows the streets of Sioux Center like Harlan Rus. Sioux Center’s Street Department head is retiring after more than 35 years of ensuring clear and safe travel throughout the community.

Harlan Rus has been behind the controls of the City’s street sweeper, snow plows, motor graders, and other equipment for decades, responsible for upkeep and maintenance of the public streets and storm water system, along with the city’s yard waste compost dump, to which he made significant improvements. Rus began with the City in October 1988 and has seen a lot of changes, including the number of miles of city streets nearly doubling – from around 35 miles to the current 65 miles. 

“The biggest change I’ve seen is in the equipment,” Rus said. “Trucks are more powerful and heavier. There are more attachments and automated switching to change them. It used to take 2-3 guys and a couple hours to switch the payloader from the dirt bucket to the snow bucket. Now you flip a switch.” 

Today’s street sweeper uses vacuum technology, but until 1991 the City used a mechanical sweeper with brooms that would kick the debris back, where it was lifted into a hopper. 

“When there were leaves in the fall, that would fill up so fast,” Rus said. “At the peak of fall leaves, I’d have to empty it every 15-20 minutes. Now, in the same amount of time, I can go three times as far.”

One thing Rus won’t miss is getting up in the very early hours in the morning, including the middle-of-the-night decisions on plowing. At the City, he is known for brewing legendary double-strength coffee.

“I enjoy plowing snow – just not in the middle of the night,” he laughed. “If we could shut down all the streets and plow in the middle of the day, that would be nice!”

In his retirement, Rus is looking forward to traveling with his wife Carla, and enjoying time with his children and 4 grandchildren, including watching their ball games. 

Utilities Manager Murray Hulstein thanked Rus for his character and dedication to work with the city.

“Harlan has always had an attitude of caring about Sioux Center and the work he does. That’s one of the most valuable attributes you can have as a public servant,” Hulstein said. “Sioux Center is known for its cleanliness, and Harlan has been part of that, keeping the streets clean and in good shape.”

Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in City News

New commercial area in Sioux Center

New Commercial Area Opening in Sioux Center

Posted on: February 16, 2024 | Last Modified on: May 13, 2021
Image of Text: City Budget 2024-25

Council Looks to Decrease City Tax Rate

Posted on: February 9, 2024
Three groups of people hold large checks

Sioux Center Utilities Partner with Businesses for Rebates

Posted on: February 8, 2024 | Last Modified on: May 13, 2021
Two police officers

Two Officers Named Police Sergeant

Posted on: January 27, 2024
Audition poster

Sound of Music Auditions for All Ages

Posted on: January 8, 2024
paving crew works near pond

Sioux Center's New Pond Progressing

Posted on: November 21, 2023
aerial view of road construction

Highway 75 Phase 1 Project Awaiting Paving

Posted on: November 11, 2023
Two girls read a book

Library Receives State Accreditation

Posted on: August 3, 2023
Man in police uniform

Three New Police Officers Sworn In

Posted on: August 1, 2023
Group of people hold large check

SCMU Delivers Energy-Saving Rebate

Posted on: July 10, 2023
A man's face

Gabhart Shaped a Flourishing Mall

Posted on: June 29, 2023
A man's face and police badge

Koedam appointed Chief of Police

Posted on: June 26, 2023
Drawing of hotel exterior

Agreement Assists Development of New Hotel

Posted on: February 27, 2023
Concept of detention pond

New Detention Pond Will Benefit Community

Posted on: February 21, 2023
Map of road construction project

First Highway 75 Bids are Favorable

Posted on: February 2, 2023
Lifeguard watches pool from chair

All Seasons Center Rates Adjusted for 2023

Posted on: December 12, 2022
Concept for reconstruction of road

City Prepares for Highway 75 Replacement

Posted on: December 3, 2022
Man's face and drawing of buildings

Gonzalez Begins as Building Code Official

Posted on: September 1, 2022
top of tree

Local Response to Emerald Ash Borer

Posted on: March 3, 2022
Woman at table with three children

State Awards Grant for Childcare Project

Posted on: February 15, 2022
Inside an indoor turf dome

Indoor Turf Sports Complex Moving Forward

Posted on: November 24, 2021
Three adult faces

Sioux Center Elects Council Members

Posted on: November 9, 2021
Work crew preparing basement for cement

Heritage Village Begins Historic Move

Posted on: October 28, 2021
Fire station

Fire Station 2 Open House on Oct. 7

Posted on: September 24, 2021