Month: April 2010

April 27, 2010

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING – DRAFT ONLY
April 27, 2010

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

ROLL CALL:   Council members present:  Darcie Bagott; Roger Marcus; Mike Milano; Norm Schorzman; Jeff Snook; Rick Wekenman; & Randy Zehm.  Also present: Public Works Superintendent Dwayne Griffin; Police Chief Jerry Neumann; Building Inspector Dan Gladwill; City Clerk-Treasurer Joyce Beeson; & Deputy Clerk Ann Thompson.  Public present:  Pete Hertz; Cameron Jester; Bekah Miller MacPhee.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:   Councilmember Zehm asked for the minutes to be changed under his committee report.  It should read “…to demolish the damaged portion of the building”.  Councilmember Milano MOVED to adopt the minutes as amended of the Regular Council Meeting of April 13, 2010.  Councilmember Schorzman seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

OPEN FORUM:
Alternatives to Violence of the Palouse (ATVP): Bekah and Cameron briefly explained what they do.  ATVP serves all of Whitman County; they will drive anywhere within the county to meet anyone.  They focus on sexual and domestic violence and offer legal advocacy for victims.  They have a 24-hour hotline 332-HELP (4357).  For those in a dangerous situation, there is a confidential shelter where they can be safely protected.  ATVP.  They don’t push services on anyone; they just want to be accessible to everyone.  Their business line 332-0552.

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT:   Supt. Griffin submitted a written report.
They finished putting the chips around the new playground.
The parts came in for well #3 so they will begin the repairs.

Councilmember Milano is meeting with the rep from Playworld to do a final safety walkthrough on the new playground equipment.  The Little People’s Park Project is going to buy a couple other small individual pieces to finish the project.  They also have enough funds left to replace the pea gravel with chips under the other older playground areas.

POLICE REPORT :

  • Last week we had our audit with the Dept of Commerce for the police motorcycle grant.  Everything was good and a report will be sent to us.
  • We had the annual UI/WSU cycling event throughout town.  The event took longer than anticipated but there were many great volunteers to help with traffic.
  • The yearly vehicle and handheld radar certification was done today and all our equipment passed.
  • With spring coming, the junk vehicles are becoming an issue again.  Keep in mind if you are going to work on a car in your yard/driveway, it’s limited to one vehicle.
  • The PD is going to begin an active approach in identifying non-licensed dog owners in Palouse in an attempt to get them to comply.

BUILDING INSPECTOR REPORT :  Dan Gladwill reported things are starting to pick up in Palouse.  He has come out a number of times to review people’s projects.  He checked out the city’s flathouse and discussed how that is to be repaired.  He reviewed the plans for the community center which he thinks will be a great addition to Palouse.
2008: 6 permits – $25,000 valuation
2009: 2 permits – $150,000 valuation (included a new house)
2010: 8 permits – $25,000 valuation
Regarding the abatement on Culton St – it is now out of Dan’s hands.  Councilmember Zehm is going to meet with his other building committee members to discuss this further.

JFB REPORT :  Chief Bagott got the news that they were awarded the $38,200 grant from Homeland Security.  This grant has a 5% match to be split between City and County.  That money will purchase about 24 new turnouts for the firefighters.  The ones we’re replacing are about 20 years old and out of current compliance.  The new ones are much safer and about 35% lighter.  We should have those by the fall.

Fire calls have been low; a few assists in the Potlatch area.  With a dry year expected it could be a high fire risk season.

NEW BUSINESS :
Discussion on w/s refund & adjustment policy:
Deputy Clerk Ann explained that w/s customers with one meter for multiple users, i.e. apartments, duplexes, trailer courts, etc., are on an honor system for reporting current occupancy.  It has been common in the past to allow a credit adjustment on one previously mailed billing period.  It is also the owners’ responsibility to notify the city when vacancies have been filled; not notifying the city could be considered theft of services.  The city will charge for uncharged months of w/s usage.  Councilmember Marcus MOVED to adopt a policy that states our position on w/s refunds and adjustments.  Seconded by Councilmember Wekenman.  Having a written policy will make it very clear.  Motion carried unanimously.  Councilmember Wekenman also thinks it would be best if landlords were responsible for w/s bills rather than the tenants.  It is believed that Moscow and Pullman both do that.

COMMITTEE REPORTS/REQUESTS: 

Parks, Cemetery, & Buildings-Randy Zehm, chair:   New playground dedication this Saturday, May 1, at 6 pm at the park. The Little Peoples Park Committee will provide hot dogs & burgers.

Personnel & Pool-Jeff Snook, Chair :  Jeff spoke with Pool Mgr. Annie Manning.  They’ve received about nine applications.  They are going to interview lifeguards the week of May 17th.  There is going to be a staff meeting with city staff, Annie, and the pool committee.  Jeff still wants to purchase the safety steps for the pool (it’s about a $2,000 item).  It will be money well-spent.  The steps allow the elderly, disabled, injured, and very young a safe entry and exit from the pool.  Councilmember Wekenman MOVED to authorize Jeff to spend up to $2,500 to acquire the new industrial safety steps for the pool.  Seconded by Councilmember Marcus.  Motion carried unanimously.

Jeff read aloud the letter to be emailed to residents and posted about town regarding the pool opening June 25th.

Water & Sewer-Roger Marcus, Chair :  Meeting with Andy O’Neill on May 3 to discuss the progress being made on the water use efficiency.

Finance, Property, & Equipment-Mike Milano, Chair :  The Q1-2010 budget looks good, with no apparent issues.  Joyce developed the first narrative report and hopes it helps people better understand.   A budget amendment for the FD grants for the turnouts will be presented at the next meeting.  Mike Milano stated he would read the narrative report and get together with the finance committee.

MAYOR’S REPORT :
“Honor Them Foundation” Mayor’s trophy golf tournament.  4-person teams are encouraged to participate.  The Honor Them Foundation is a Colfax charity that supports local returning servicemen and servicewomen and their families.

So far 79 chipper/compost permits have been sold.  When PW chipped last week it cost the city $260 + their time + the backhoe.

Mayor is meeting with the WSU landscaping class tomorrow for their presentation on landscaping along the Brownfield site in Palouse.

Mayor read aloud a letter of resignation from Councilmember Darcie Bagott effective tonight, April 27th, 2010.  She will be a huge loss and big shoes to fill.  Councilmember Milano MOVED and Councilmember Snook seconded to reluctantly accept Darcie’s resignation.  Motion carried unanimously.  We will have an open call to members of the community to fill the position.  It is the council’s decision to select.  Signs will be posted about town and emailed out inviting people to apply, due by May 25th.

The AWC conference is in June this year in Vancouver.

ALLOW PAYMENT OF BILLS:   Councilmember Zehm MOVED that the bills against the city be allowed.  Councilmember Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

ADJOURN:   Councilmember Schorzman MOVED to adjourn.  Councilmember Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.  The council meeting adjourned at 8:23 PM.

The following checks are approved for payment:
Claims Paid     Ck #2221 – #2235       $3,039.33

April 13, 2010

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING – DRAFT ONLY
April 13, 2010

CALL TO ORDER:   Mayor Echanove called the Council Meeting to order at 7:02 PM.

ROLL CALL:   Council members present:  Darcie Bagott; Roger Marcus; Mike Milano; Norm Schorzman; Jeff Snook; & Randy Zehm.  Absent:  Rick Wekenman.  Also present: Public Works Superintendent Dwayne Griffin; City Attorney Stephen Bishop (7:20); Police Chief Jerry Neumann; City Clerk-Treasurer Joyce Beeson; & Deputy Clerk Ann Thompson.  Public present:  Tom Wolny, Pete Hertz, Jeslyn Lemke.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:   Councilmember Bagott MOVED to adopt the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of March 23, 2010.  Councilmember Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT:   Supt. Griffin submitted a written report.  Additionally, they are doing the ground work for the new playground equipment.  They also planted four of the new trees at the RV Park.

POLICE REPORT:   Chief Neumann submitted an activity log.  Additionally, Chief is working with Marc Van Harn regarding the Rat Rod show and street closure.  He is requesting Main Street from Bridge St. to Hall St. be closed June 5, 2010.  The detour will be Hall St. to Whitman St. to Bridge St.  Chief is meeting with Marc Van Harn this week to go over the P.D.’s expectations and to make sure all bases are covered.  Their goal is to make this a family-friendly venue and generate business for Palouse.  City staff will get all the paperwork into the Dept. of Transportation requesting approval for this street closure.  Councilmember Zehm commended Chief Neumann on his work with Van Harn and the plans for this event.

NEW BUSINESS :
Interlocal Agreement with the City of Garfield for renting their chipper .  This agreement gives the city another option for chipper rental.  An agreement has already been signed for use of the County chipper.  Garfield charges $20/hour run time based on the meter on the chipper.  Councilmember Schorzman MOVED to authorize the mayor to sign the agreement with Garfield.  Councilmember Zehm seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.

Sealed Bids for old playground equipment removed from City Park :  Councilmember Milano MOVED , second by Councilmember Zehm to surplus the old seesaw spring rider.  Motion carried unanimously.

Resolution 2010-05 :  open a Public Funds Now account with AWB.  Mayor read aloud the resolution in its entirety.  This savings account gives the city a little better rate than what we are currently getting at the investment pool.  It may also reduce the number of wire transfers to and from the investment pool, which cost $10 each.  As stated in the resolution, AWB is approved by the Public Deposit Protection Commission and the balance of this account shall not exceed the maximum amounts insured under FDIC.  This isn’t anything we’re locked into; it’s just a savings account that we can be close at any time and the balance sent to the investment pool.  Councilmember Milano MOVED to adopt Resolution 2010-05 authorizing Clerk Beeson to open a Public Funds Now savings account with AWB.  Councilmember Snook seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.

Ordinance 868 :  Amending the 2010 Annual Budget.  Mayor read aloud the ordinance in its entirety.  This ordinance amends ordinances No. 865 & 866.  Current Expense, expenditures:  add a new line item for the chipper operating rental with a budget of $6,000 and decrease ending balance.  Arterial Streets, Revenues:  increase beginning balance and Highways and Local Programs to reflect actual grant revenue from the completion of the 2009 H Street Project.  Expenditures:  increase Sidewalks line item for the completion of the 2009 H Street Project and decrease ending balance.   In writing the 2010 budget, it was thought that only the retainage would be left to pay.  The final payment and retainage were not paid until 2010 to Motley-Motley.  Councilmember Milano MOVED , and Councilmember Zehm seconded to adopt the ordinance as written.  Motion carried unanimously.

COMMITTEE REPORTS/REQUESTS: 

Parks, Cemetery, & Buildings-Randy Zehm, chair:
It took about 90 minutes for approximately 25 volunteers to plant about 360 trees at the Palouse River Walk.
Randy spoke with Steve McGehee about the Culton Street building abatement.  Steve McGehee still holds the contract.  A few weeks ago, the current owner did receive a bid to demolish the building.

Streets & Sidewalks-Darcie Bagott, Chair :  Darcie has been speaking with Bev Fox regarding the “Safe Routes to School” Grant.  Darcie met with her and gave her a compilation of suggestions to make the traffic/pedestrian flow safer and better.

Personnel & Pool-Jeff Snook, Chair :  Jeff is going to write a small report to distribute to residents explaining why the pool is opening later this season.

Water & Sewer-Roger Marcus, Chair:   Roger met with Andy O’Neill from RCAC.  They discussed the state’s requirements on the water use efficiency report.  We will present updated info on gallons used and the amount of waste we have.  Palouse is at 90% efficiency which is remarkable.  Some cities are at 50%.  We will need to hold a public meeting at the 5/11 council meeting.  Councilmember Marcus MOVED , second by Councilmember Zehm to hold a public hearing for input to define the City of Palouse goal for water use efficiency.  This hearing is set for May 11, 2010, at 7:00PM.

CLERK-TREASURER’S REPORT: 
Joyce will be meeting with Mary Estes from the Planning Commission to discuss R1 setbacks.

MAYOR’S REPORT :
The Mayor has been busy meeting with different officials to discuss city affairs:  Met with Dick Waters from SEWEDA; met with Steven Dunn from the Public Works Trust Fund; and met with Jim Darling of MFA, our Brownfields consultant.

There was a misunderstanding at City Hall and a check was issued to the school for $2,100 instead of first to DOE for approval.  DOE only approved $600 of the $2,100.  It was not our intent for the city or the school to pay that.

The city received a Public Records Request (PRR) March 23.  It was completed March 25.  In all, there were 284 pages copied for a total of $28.40 worth of photocopying due to the city.  The requestor was notified by email and over the phone that the PRR was completed.  It has yet to be picked up.

ALLOW PAYMENT OF BILLS:   Councilmember Snook MOVED that the bills against the city be allowed.  Councilmember Zehm seconded the motion.  Councilmember Bagott abstained due to conflict of interest.  Motion carried unanimously.

ADJOURN:   Councilmember Bagott MOVED to adjourn.  Councilmember Zehm seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.  The council meeting adjourned at 8:09 PM.

The following checks are approved for payment:
Payroll Paid                 Ck. #2160 – #2179 & EFT       $39,723.45
Claims Paid                 Ck. #2180 –  #2220                 $31,276.88
Check Voided             Ck. #2191