Month: January 2006

January 24, 2006


January 24, 2006


CALL TO ORDER: Mayor Pro-Tem Wekenman called the Council Meeting to order at 7:00 PM.

ROLL CALL: Council members present were: Darcie Bagott; Mark Bailey; Mike Milano; Andy O’Neill; Norm Schorzman. Absent – Jeff Snook and Mayor Echanove. Also present were: Joyce Beeson, Clerk-Treasurer; Byron Hodges, Public Works Superintendent; Bev Pearce, Deputy Clerk; Caitlyn McGehee; Heidi Kite; Mike Bagott; Emily Bagott.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:   Mike Milano MOVED to approve the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of January 10, 2006.  Mike Bailey seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.


Mayor Pro-Tem Wekenman swore in new council member Darcie Bagott



  1.   Heidi Kite-Blue Grass Festival: Heidi asked council for permission to use Hayton Green Park for a Blue Grass Festival she is planning in July.  The dates she proposing are either Saturday July 22nd or 29th.  The hours would be from Noon to 9 PM.  She estimates about 8 or 9 bands.  She would like to have the parking lot near the bridge closed off to band crew only, as they will be moving in and out all day. Council Member Schorzman MOVED to allow a Blue Grass Festival in the Hayton Green Park on either July 22nd or July 29th.  Council Member O’Neill seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.


PUBLIC WORKS REPORT : Byron Hodges: Byron reported that three trees have been cut down in the cemetery this week and the debris and wood has been hauled away.  The city crew continues with maintenance and repair of equipment.  The new lawn mower is due to arrive this week.


POLICE DEPARTMENT REPORT:  Mayor Pro-Tem reported that Chief Neumann and Officer Wright had the opportunity to escort Paul Allen at the Seahawk football game.


BUILDING INSPECTOR REPORT: Dan Gladwill: Dan reported working on 20 permits.  He is on the phone several times a day with Palouse business and is in town 2 to 3 times a week.


JOINT FIRE BOARD AND EMS UPDATE: Fire Chief Bagott reported that he has received and completed the paperwork for the DNR grant.  He will be purchasing replacement and new equipment for the fire department.  Mayor Pro-Tem reported that the JFB has decided to merge the Equipment and Facility committees. This merged committee will began work on a 25 year plan for the Fire Department.  Chief Bagott reported that the AVISTA utility bill for the Public Safety Building was about $349 for the last billing period.  He checked on the old fire stations bill for the same period and it was at $490.  The Chief is extremely satisfied with the efficiency of the new building.



  1. Discussion of issues concerning closure of Main Street for events: Council Member Schorzman MOVED to put the discussion of Main Street closures back on the council table. Council Member Mike Milano seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.  Mayor Pro-Tem began the discussion by reading a letter from business man Will Thurman.  Will’s letter requests a specific traffic pattern to better facilitate parking in front of his store during the June 3 car show and future events.  Mayor Pro-Tem Wekenman also reported that the Palouse Tavern did a good business during the previous car show.  Heidi Kite, owner of the Open Eye, said that she had no bad effect from the car show.  When a customer purchased a large piece of furniture, Marc VanHarn and friends helped move the piece out of her store to the customer’s vehicle.  Council Member O’Neill suggested that the city needs better signage for events.  Mayor Pro-Tem reported that this has already been discussed with the Police Department.  Byron Hodges stated that 3 new signs were purchased prior to Haunted Palouse and one was stolen.  He agrees that bigger and brighter signs would be better.  He also pointed out that during Haunted Palouse some of the street lights were covered, which added to the traffic problem.  It was suggested that we partner with the Chamber of Commerce on traffic control issues.  Council Member O’Neill suggested setting up a traffic flow standard for all events on Main Street.  Mayor Pro-Tem suggested the chamber members in attendance tonight take this concern back to the chamber meeting.  Council Member Bailey suggested an event planning strategy for the city.  Treasurer Beeson stated that all street closures have to be submitted to the Department of Transportation through city hall or the police department.  Council Member Schorzman MOVED to allow Marc VanHarn to have his car show on June 3, 2006, with a one block street closure between SR27 and Beach St and the North half of Main St between Beach and Hall.  Mike Milano seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.
  2. Compression brakes- Byron Hodges reported that a no compression brake sign would cost $75 per sign and pole.  He checked with the Department of Transportation and found that for safety reasons, they do not like this type of signage.  The signs would need to be placed within city limits and a noise ordinance would have to be put in place by the Department of Transportation, it would take 90 days for the process.  If the state were to put up the signs it would be a city expense.  Byron pointed out that placing this type of sign within city limits would be too late of a warning.  Council Member Bailey reported that the state put in place a new stature which gives cities the right to ticket for using compression brakes and set the noise level to 80 decibels.   Council Member O’Neill asked if any one has contacted the offending truck drivers to ask that they not use their compression brakes.  Mayor Pro-tem suggested the Policy and Administration committee continue looking into this matter.  Council Member Bailey, chair of this committee, suggested going through a season to observe the situation.  Mayor Pro-Tem stated that the only business that might be affected by the noise of a compression brake would be Kramer’s Funeral home and perhaps should be contacted.




  1. Resolution No. 2006-01: A resolution authorizing the establishment of a health reimbursement arrangement / voluntary employees’ beneficiary association (“HRA VEBA”) plan.

Treasurer Beeson explained that in 1999 the city approved a medical savings plan for its employees.  This resolution updates the past resolution.  The name of the plan changed and employees are given increased investment options.  Mayor Pro-Tem read Resolution No. 2006-01.  Council Member Milano MOVED to adopt Resolution 2006-01.  Council Member Schorzman seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.


  1. Changing a street name: Council Member Milano proposed to the council to name a currently unnamed street after Bill Wolf.   This was passed to the street and sidewalk committee for review.




Council Member Bagott reported that Muir Daud prepared documents, drawings and a cost estimate for the Whitman Street Renovation.  This was submitted as part of the pre-application process for funding of this project.  She also reported that an application for funding of chip seal on Fairview Avenue and the F St to Bluff St road was submitted.


FINANCE, PROPERTY & EQUIPMENT : Norm Schorzman-No Report


Treasurer Beeson reported that the city crew is pursuing bids to re-point the west and back walls of the city hall building.  This has already been approved and budgeted for.  She asked council if Marc Arrasmith could begin pulling out the shrubs on the west and east walls of the of Central Park at City Hall.  She asked the council to consider landscaping options for this area.  The council gave its general approval for the re-landscaping to begin.


PERSONNEL & POOL : Jeff Snook –Absent-No Report

POLICY & ADMINISTRATION : Mark Bailey- Reported under Old Business.

WATER & SEWER : Andy O’Neill-No Report

POLICE, FIRE & SAFETY : Rick Wekenman-He reported under JFB Update.

MAYOR’S REPORT : Mayor Pro-Tem reported that there will be a 10-year Flood-Free Party on Wednesday, February 8th 6 to 8PM at the Palouse Community Center. Hot dogs and drinks will be provided.  The citizens are asked to bring side dishes or desserts.  At the same time the EMS is considering a Blood Drive for the American Red Cross but has not yet been confirmed.  This event is sponsored by the Palouse Block Watch and the Palouse EMS.

ALLOW PAYMENT OF BILLS: Norm Schorzman MOVED that the bills against the city be allowed.

Mike Milano seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.


ADJOURN: Norm Schorzman MOVED to adjourn. Mike Milano seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 8:06 PM


The following vouchers/warrants are approved for payment:

Claims Paid                   Warrants:  # 11548      through # 11566               Payment: $9,870.79


APPROVED:________________________________   ATTEST:________________________________


January 10, 2006


January 10, 2006


CALL TO ORDER: Mayor Michael Echanove called the Council Meeting to order at 7:00PM

ROLL CALL: Council members present were: Mark Bailey; Mike Milano; Andy O’Neill; Norm Schorzman; Jeff Snook; and Rick Wekenman. Absent-Darcie Bagott. Also present were: Joyce Beeson, Clerk-Treasurer; Byron Hodges, Public Works Superintendent; Bev Pearce, Deputy Clerk; David Milano; Kathleen Milano; Tracy Milano; Edie Riddle; Dave Tharp; Marc VanHarn; Tony Wright.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:   Jeff Snook MOVED to approve the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of December 13, 2005.  Rick Wekenman seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.


The Mayor swore in new council members: Mike Milano, Position No. 1; Mark Bailey, Position No. 3 and Andy O’Neill, Position No. 7.



  1. Dave Tharp-compression brakes on Hwy 272 coming in from Potlatch

Dave is concerned about the noise compression brakes make when used coming into town.  He said that 98% of the truck drivers do not use them; it’s the 2% that concerns him.  Tony Wright, who lives on Myott St also is concerned, he referred the council to RCW 46.37.395 a state law prohibiting the use of compression brakes.  Both Tony and Dave feel that the city should consider a stronger ordinance then the state requires.  The Mayor moved this issue to the Policy and Administration committee for review.


  1. Marc VanHarn-June 3 Car Show

Marc offered to the council a proposal for his second car show on June 3.  He expects more vendors and entries to the show.  He received good feedback from those who attended and wants to put the show on again.  He has already submitted to the city a street closure request.  Council Member Milano pointed out to Marc that the Department of Transportation requires more signage when streets are closed, he will meet with Marc to go over the details.  Marc also requested camping at the city park for this event.  Council Member Schorzman stated concerns of closing two blocks of Main Street because of the impact of parking. Marc said that he has already addressed this.   Council Member Schorzman MOVED to table the discussion until he gets feedback from the businesses.  Council member Bailey seconded the motion.  Council Member Wekenman stated that perhaps all the business owners affected should come to a council meeting to discuss this.  The motion carried with Council Member Wekenman opposed.



  1. Review and award lawnmower bid

Byron submitted to the council two bids for a new lawnmower.  1. Arrow Tractor – $2584.80 with trade-in

  1. Columbia Tractor-$2149 with trade-in. Byron pointed out that the lawn mower models have changed for 2006.  These bids are for new 2005 models.  This allows the city to continue using all the attachments on hand.  Next years lawnmower model will be different and either replacements or modifications will need to be taken into consideration.


  1. Review and award tree cutting bid

Byron submitted to the council two bids for falling three trees in the cemetery.  He stated that in the past the city has always been able to handle the tree maintenance in the cemetery without any damage to grave markers.  These particular trees need equipment that the city does not have.  The bids are: 1. Wilson – $969.30 w/tax; 2. RC – $1507 w/tax.  Wilson will receive the bid.

Council Member Schorzman MOVED to accept the bids from Columbia Tractor and Wilson Tree Service. Council Member Snook seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.

Byron updated the council on the city crew’s work: clean up gravel that was put down for snow and ice, all storm drains have been cleaned, one plugged sewer on Bridge Street worked on.  Marc has been painting tables, digging in new sprinklers at the park and completing the construction of the barricades.  The crew continues to work on vehicle and equipment maintenance.



The Mayor stated that Bagott Motors is working on finding a used vehicle for the police department.  The city has in its budget $25,000, with $10,200 of that being the grant that former Chief Zehm has acquired.  Council Member Wekenman wants some type of public announcement to inform the citizens of Palouse of the purchase and upgrades to the vehicles of the police department.





Council Member Bailey had an update on the issue of Jo Johnson’s road.  He had spent some time with Tom Boone, original developer of the property in question.  Mark said that it is very difficult to determine the boundaries of this road because there are so many stakes around the area.  Byron said that he would like to walk the road with Mark to further explain the situation.  He also continued to state that if the surrounding property owners would pitch in an equal amount to bring the road to city specification, the city would then take over the road.  Council Member Bailey asked if there are any letters or other documentation on this issue.  Treasurer Beeson said yes, letters were sent to all involved parties.  The Mayor reminded the council that the city would not accept the road unless the situation went through our city attorney first.  The Mayor did ask Byron to plow the road as needed for snow removal.  This would be a courtesy to the residents on the road.



  1. Discussion of Ecology process for assessment of Brownfield’s

The mayor discussed with council a program that the Dept. of Ecology administers regarding Brownfield properties.

A Brownfield is defined as real property, the expansion, redeveloplement, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.   He and Joyce had the opportunity to meet with EPA officials last October and discussed possible projects in Palouse.  The EPA explained that there are three main points to their program: 1.) property assessment   2). clean up   3). reuse of the property.  Generally Brownfield’s are old gas stations or other type of business sites that used chemicals in their business.  These types of properties are often located on prime real estate locations such as Main Streets.   Currently 2 types of assessment exist with the costs being covered by the EPA.   After the assessment is made, recommendations are reported.  The Mayor has spoken to a possible property owner about this program and the property owner had no initial objections to continue to explore this program.  The Mayor pointed out that the Department of Ecology has some previous assessment work in Palouse and that he was sent an abbreviated version of those records.  The Mayor would like the council’s blessing to continue researching this program.




FINANCE, PROPERTY & EQUIPMENT : Norm Schorzman-No Report


PERSONNEL & POOL : Jeff Snook-No Report


WATER & SEWER : No Report

POLICE, FIRE & SAFETY : Rick Wekenman-No Report


MAYOR’S REPORT : The Mayor began by assigning chairs to the committees: Policy/Admin – Mark Bailey; Finance, Property, Equipment-Norm Schorzman; Park, Cemetery & Buildings-Mike Milano; Water & Sewer-Andy O’Neill; Streets & Sidewalks-Darcie Bagott; Police, Fire & Safety-Rick Wekenman (this chair would also be on the Joint Fire Board).

The Mayor informed council members that in addition to serving as a chair they must also choose three other committees to serve on.  Stating there are many exciting projects for the city in 2006, RV parks, the  Fisher’s Addition sewer project to name a couple.  Council Member O’Neill asked if he could meet with Byron and the city crew to see daily operations.  The Mayor informed council of the Whitman Street project, between Hwy 26 and Hall Street.  This road is a disaster and it needs a total rework.  The Mayor said that the city will spend 2006 looking for funding and in 2007 the construction will begin.  Joyce and the Mayor have met with TIB and WSDOT already to discuss the project.  Munir Daud has already drawn up preliminary drawings for the pre-application that was sent in last week at no charge.

Council Member Wekenman stated that the railroad lines future is in question.  No one can afford to ship with the railroad anymore. The Mayor said that the design work must be done now not later.  The project will proceed as if the rail line were still there.  This is a frequently used street in Palouse.

The Mayor stated that Byron and the city staff worked on an application for funding to chip/seal Fairview Ave and the F, 4th D, 3rd, E St road on the South Hill.  The application was sent to the Small City Pavement Preservation program.  Treasurer Beeson requested that the F, 4th D, 3rd and E Street and a road off of the Potlatch be renamed.  These multi named roads pose a problem for the 911 system as well as documentation for other sources.

Other projects going into 2006 are the relocation of the Police department into the old fire station, and the 40 x 100 foot lot on Main Street available for development.  The remaining CDBG funds from the Mary Street house sale are still available.  The amount is about $25,000 and the council may use it for community development initiatives.

County Commissioner Partch met with the Mayor, reminding him of two positions open on county committees:

  1. .08 committee   2. Palouse Economic Development Committee, private citizens and council members are welcome.

The AWC will be holding the City Legislative Action Conference on January 25 and 26 in Olympia.  Council Members Snook and the Mayor are planning to attend.  The Mayor pointed out that the next city council meeting is the same day they will be leaving.  He asked what the council members would like to do about the council meeting.  Council Member Schorzman MOVED to change the council date to January 23, Monday.  Council Member Snook seconded the motion.  The motion carried.  Clerk Beeson stated she would check with attorney Bishop about the legalities of changing meeting night since it is set in city code.  The Mayor reminded council that they must elect a Mayor pro tem.  Council Member O’Neill MOVED to elect Council Member Wekenman as Mayor Pro Tem.  Council Member Bailey seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.

A liquor permit renewal for Thurman’s Market has come before council, with no objects the permit is approved by default.


ALLOW PAYMENT OF BILLS: Norm Schorzman MOVED that the bills against the city be allowed.

Jeff Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.


ADJOURN Jeff Snook MOVED to adjourn. Mike Milano seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 8:45 PM


The following vouchers/warrants are approved for payment:

Claims Paid                   Warrants:  # 11489      through # 11502          Payment: $11,405.46

Claims Paid                   Warrants: # 11503       through # 11522           Payment: $8,882.13

Claims VOID                 Warrants: # 11487       through # 11488

Payroll Paid                   Warrants” # 6039         through # 6061              Payment: $28,456.62


APPROVED:________________________________   ATTEST:________________________________