Palouse City Council
Regular Council Meeting
January 27, 2015
CALL TO ORDER: Mayor Echanove called the Council Meeting to order at 7:00 PM.
ROLL CALL: Council members present: Doreen Hanson; Bo Ossinger; Mike Hicks; Senja Estes; Bev Pearce; Christopher Langsett. Councilmember Langsett MOVED to excuse Councilmember Wekenman’s absence. Councilmember Estes seconded and the motion carried unanimously. Staff present: Public Works Superintendent Dwayne Griffin; Police Chief Jerry Neumann; Clerk-Treasurer Mike Bagott; Deputy Clerk Ann Thompson. Public present: Donna Langsett; Teresa Baker; Chris Ricketts; Dick Styer.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Councilmember Pearce MOVED to adopt the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of January 13, 2015. Councilmember Hanson seconded and the motion carried unanimously.
PUBLIC WORKS REPORT: Supt. Griffin submitted a written report.
The last few days Public Works has been working on re-roofing the second picnic shelter at the park.
In regards to the issue with the new backhoe, the company said it’s how the new pumps and emissions run and we have to live with it; we’re not the only ones who have complained. It has a one year full warranty. We got it in March of 2014. A representative is supposed to stop by and look at it.
The front of the library needs to have the siding replaced or painted. The Xenodicans have offered to contribute funds towards the project. The existing siding was put up in the mid 90’s. Re-siding is more costly and labor-intensive so Supt. Griffin spoke with Moscow Bldg Supply and they carry a special primer and paint for siding. Public Works is going to move forward on that. Painting it is a low-cost solution to the problem and if it doesn’t last or work, something else could be done in the future.
Nuisance yard update: The tenants were sent letters in January and have made progress in cleaning up the yard. There is still a lot of work to do. They have until February 15th to complete a few more things. The property owners will be sent a letter on January 30th. It is ongoing.
The new police vehicle has been in service for a few days. We purchased a 2013 Dodge Journey with 28,000 miles on it. Chief is working on bracketing the sirens/light bar/& security screen. Awaiting the city decals on outside. This vehicle replaced the totaled ’04 Durango. Purchase cost of this vehicle was $20,400. Plus money for after-market add-ons including decal package, cargo box, brush bar, etc. is $2,000. So total we’re in about $22,500.
Regarding the ongoing issue with the ’07 Charger police vehicle. It’s unreliable. PD has roughly $18,000 left in vehicle reserve fund. That includes the $8,500 payout from the insurance for totaled ’04 Durango. Chief would like an additional $9,000 from the general fund for purchasing a new vehicle to replace the ’07 Charger. That should leave him, after vehicle purchase of approx. $24,500 with a reserve cushion of about $2,500. If that’s approved, he’d like to surplus the totaled ’07 Charger with a minimum bid of $1,500. If no bid received, then we’ll use that as a speed deterrent vehicle. And we’ll have to move forward with another special market condition vehicle purchase. The fund should re-charge by next year. The Chief’s 2007 Durango is still in good condition and he realistically expects it to run another 4 years. It’s only at about 65,000 miles. C-T Bagott said he doesn’t believe this will put the city in any kind of jeopardy or cash flow problems. This may however require a budget amendment later in the year. Mayor would like to hold off on the $9,000. Councilmember Pearce thinks it’s important to have dependable emergency service vehicles. Councilmember Pearce MOVED to accept Chief Neumann’s recommendations for purchasing a replacement vehicle for the ’07 Charger under special market conditions and allocating another $9,000 from the general fund. Councilmember Langsett. Councilmember Hicks would like to table it to see if it’s going to affect anything else. C-T Bagott said this is not an expense out of nowhere; if it’s not done today it will be done a year or two from now. Discussion ensued. Councilmember Pearce amended her motion to allocating $7,500 from the general fund to the police equipment reserve fund. Councilmember Langsett seconded the amended motion. Motion carried unanimously. Councilmember Pearce MOVED to surplus the ’07 Charger with a minimum bid of $1,500 and a closing date of Feb. 27. Deputy Clerk Thompson will get that moving forward. This will be sealed bid process. Councilmember Estes seconded. Motion carried unanimously. Councilmember Estes MOVED, seconded by Councilmember Pearce, authorizing C-T Bagott to put together a resolution to purchase another vehicle under special market conditions. Motion carried unanimously.
38 fire calls ytd. Rural calls to city calls were 3 to 1. But the one tavern fire was as costly as the rural calls combined. We need a parking upgrade at the Public Safety Building. They would like to place parking barriers between the parking lot and the embankment. They will research options and costs for parking barriers and also some better illumination. The expense should be minimal and fall within the current emergency services budget.
EMS had 83 calls YTD. The trend is higher call volume over the past few years but subject to fluctuation year after year. EMS is interviewing prospective EMT’s. But trainings aren’t available until this summer.
Our relationship with Pullman needs to remain strong. They don’t just transport; they help train us; they review our procedures, etc.
Updated attorney agreement: The prior contract is from 2002. The monthly contract is still for $500 a month: $400 from city and $100 from JFB. There is an hourly rate increase for services rendered outside the scope of normal work such as court services. The rate increase is just a reflection of modern economics. Councilmember Pearce MOVED to authorize the Mayor to sign the updated retainer agreement with Atty. Stephen Bishop and to send it to JFB for their adoption. Councilmember Hicks seconded. Motion carried unanimously.
Policy & Administration, Chair Hanson- Doreen might compare our junk car ordinance with Garfield’s and perhaps make them more similar.
Teresa Baker thanked the council and Chief Neumann for their efforts in getting that property more in line. She has noticed a big change. She really appreciates it.
Dick Styer would like council approval to keep 60 chickens which he has had for about 50 years. Mayor read aloud PMC 6.16.020 in its entirety. As per PMC 6.16.020, council may grant him permission. Chief Neumann has never smelled, heard, or received any complaints about Mr. Styer’s chickens. Mr. Styer has acreage and no abutting neighbors. Councilmember Estes MOVED to grant Mr. Styer permission to keep his 60 chickens. Councilmember Ossinger seconded. Motion carried unanimously.
Rick, Bev, Mayor Echanove, and Attorney Bishop met with the shoreline management consulting firm. Whitman County was mandated at the state level to do this. This firm represents 6 or 7 communities in Whitman County; Atty. Bishop represents half of them. He was a good voice at the meeting. He asked very good questions of the consultants. Mayor Echanove and Rick are going to take some measurements to compare to the map calculated measurements in the draft report presented at the meeting. The consulting firm will come back with another draft.
ALLOW PAYMENT OF BILLS: Councilmember Pearce MOVED that the bills against the city be allowed. Councilmember Hanson seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
ADJOURN: Councilmember Estes MOVED to adjourn. Councilmember Pearce seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 8:30 PM.
The following checks are approved for payment:
Claims Paid 12/31/2014 13th Month Ck. #6298 $915.37
Claims Paid 1/27/2015 Ck. #6299-#6315 $25,074.78
APPROVED: ________________________________ ATTEST: ________________________________