Month: August 2015

August 25, 2015

Palouse City Council
Regular Council Meeting
August 25, 2015

CALL TO ORDER: Mayor Echanove called the Council Meeting to order at 7:01 PM.

ROLL CALL: Council members: Doreen Hanson; Bo Ossinger; Mike Hicks; Senja Estes; Rick Wekenman; Bev Pearce; Christopher Langsett. Staff: Public Works Superintendent Dwayne Griffin; Police Chief Jerry Neumann; Clerk-Treasurer Mike Bagott; & Deputy Clerk Ann Thompson.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Councilmember Pearce MOVED to adopt the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of August 11, 2015. Councilmember Hanson seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT: Supt. Griffin submitted a written report.

POLICE REPORT:
Regarding the clean-up at the house on Alder Street: The owner came to town and has made noticeable improvement. A lot of the junk was hauled off, vehicles moved, etc. Chief and Officer Merry viewed the progress and will follow-up in a couple weeks.
There have been three arrests in last couple weeks: an assault; an attempting to allude; and one false impersonation.
The bike rodeo is this Thursday on Whitman Street near the PD.

JFB REPORT:
This report covers June & July as there was no meeting in July due to lack of quorum.
Things are on target financially. The 2016 budget was reviewed, voted on and approved.
There were 6 fire calls in July, 21 YTD. 2 EMS calls in June, 9 calls in July.
Using donated funds, wireless headsets & intercom units were purchased for the brush trucks.
Nine Palouse firefighters spent a total of 28 hours at the Potlatch fire station on August 14 and 15 while Potlatch personnel were fighting the Big Lost fire near Harvard. They took the pumper tanker and a brush truck so they could respond to structure or wildland fire calls if necessary. Fortunately, no additional calls were received during their time at the station.
The burn ban is still in effect.
Palouse had a couple of small fires during harvest but considering the conditions we’ve been lucky. Fires were contained quickly with help from farmers using tractors to plow fire breaks.

CLERK-TREASURER REPORT:
CT Bagott got the TIB application submitted last week for west Whitman Street project. The total for the entire project is $700,000: $30,000 from DOT for railroad portion, $19,500 from city, $280,000 from the legislature and the rest is what we requested from TIB. We’ll find out in November if it is awarded. CT Bagott and Mayor met with Gloria Bennett from TIB and Bob Westby from WSDOT. WSDOT may be putting in additional money to replace/repair the entire line from Mill Street all the way to the grain growers.

NEW BUSINESS:
Resolution No. 2015-11 – Authorization to go out to bid for 1-Ton for Public Works: Mayor Echanove read aloud the resolution in its entirety. Resolution authorizes the solicitation of bids for the purchase of a 2016 Dodge Ram 3500 4WD Cab & Chassis for the Public Works Department. Finding something used has been fruitless. Supt. Griffin is looking for a regular cab, gas not diesel, non-luxury features, low miles, etc. The current 1990 1-ton has been on its last leg for a long time and we need to act before we’re desperate. The old service box will go on the new vehicle. This will be a secondary plow truck; we’ll still use the Ford to plow. Anticipated total cost is under $36,000 and funding is available in the 2015 budget. The truck, as specified, will most likely have to be ordered from the manufacturer as opposed to being purchased from dealer stock; anticipated turnaround time is two to three months. Supt. Griffin’s five-year payroll history was used to determine the % split amongst budget funds for this purchase: 22% streets; 43% water; 18% sewer; 16% current expense; .68% cemetery. Councilmember Hicks MOVED to adopt Resolution No. 2015-11. Councilmember Wekenman seconded. Motion carried unanimously.

COMMITTEE REPORTS/REQUESTS:
Water & Sewer, Chair Ossinger- committee met 8/24 to discuss the rates to hook water and sewer into the city’s system. The city is grossly undercharging and losing money at the current rate. Committee will gather more information and continue to look into this.

OPEN FORUM:
Will Hume, on behalf of the Viola Community Center and operating under the Palouse Caboose’s liquor license, is seeking council permission to set up a beer garden during Palouse Day (Sept. 19) on south Beach Street for the music venue. Same set up as last year. The only egress and ingress is a 10’ area in the front and the rest is completely fenced. There will be I.D. checkers on Main Street going into the venue. Beginning at approximately 4 pm and ending at 10 pm. There are no police concerns from Chief Neumann. Councilmember Hicks MOVED to allow permission for Will Hume/Viola Community Center/Palouse Caboose to use south Beach Street for Palouse Days beer garden. Councilmember Langsett seconded. Motion carried unanimously.

MAYOR’S REPORT:
The city needs to start looking at funding opportunities for Varela & Associates for 2016 because we are required to deliver a plan to DOE by end of 2017. USDA Rural Development and CERB both have grants opportunities that CT Bagott will be researching. The CERB grant is due at the end of September.

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

ADJOURN: Councilmember Ossinger MOVED to adjourn. Councilmember Pearce seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 8:13 PM.

The following checks are approved for payment:
Claims Paid 8/25/15 Ck. #6826-6847 $6,193.15

APPROVED: ________________________________
ATTEST: ________________________________

August 11, 2015

Palouse City Council
Regular Council Meeting
August 11, 2015

CALL TO ORDER: Mayor Echanove called the Council Meeting to order at 7:01 PM.

ROLL CALL: Council members present: Bo Ossinger; Mike Hicks; Senja Estes; Bev Pearce; Christopher Langsett. Council members absent: Doreen Hanson and Rick Wekenman. Councilmember Langsett MOVED to excuse their absences. Councilmember Pearce 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.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Councilmember Pearce MOVED to adopt the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of July 28, 2015. Councilmember Hicks seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT: Supt. Griffin submitted a written report.
To follow up on the drinking fountains and slide issues from last council meeting: The fountain by the library is working fine. Supt. Griffin ordered parts for the fountain at the park. The bottom of the slide portion of the toddler slide wiggles because it isn’t secured to the ground. Supt. Griffin said perhaps a weight limit is in order because it’s meant for small children.
Public Works finished metering the cemetery. That leaves only the Lions Club park left to meter. The whole city is required to be metered by 2017. This will be awesome for our water use efficiency report.
PW has about one more week on the Wall Street water line then they’ll move to working on the actual street.

POLICE REPORT:
The city received a few inquiries/complaints about a suspicious bad odor in a neighborhood on the north hill. Upon investigation, a residence was discovered with four pigs, roosters, and a lot of chicken waste. Pigs were removed immediately and roosters were removed within 48 hours. The smell has subsided.
Equipment is working fine.
The air conditioning in the PD went out last week. It was repaired by Redinger.
Kids’ Bike Rodeo is coming up August 27. New helmets will be distributed. The hope is if the helmets look cool, the kids will want to wear them.

CLERK-TREASURER REPORT:
CT Bagott received the May sales tax revenue report from Dept. of Revenue. He was very encouraged by what he saw for the one day in May the Palouse Caboose was open; it should be a sizable impact on sales tax revenue.
Representatives from Berk Consulting and the Watershed Company are coming for a meeting next week with CT Bagott and Deputy Clerk Thompson to discuss the Shoreline Management Plan procedures.
CT Bagott attended a Palouse RTPO meeting in Colfax on 7/31. Mike will look into how the RTPO interfaces with Palouse and how the City can benefit.

NEW BUSINESS:
Authorization for Mayor to sign the TIB application for West Whitman Street: The application for the West Whitman Street Project is due next Friday. Mayor Echanove requested engineers MD&A freshen up the numbers from last year’s estimate. Last year MD&A estimated $360,000 for the TIB portion: road bed, sidewalk, curb, gutter, and lighting. It will probably be a little higher this year due to inflation and the economy overall. Numbers aren’t firm, just ballpark. The legislature pledged a firm $280,000 for the project. DOT pledged $30,000. The city will be requesting approximately $375,000 from TIB to reconstruct and improve West Whitman Street, including railroad, sidewalk on one side, remove both existing street sections and RR tracks that bisect the street. There will be drainage pipe collection system and possibly two LED standard street lights, and ADA ramps. The City contribution to the project is estimated to be $21,000 for a $700,000+ project. If everything comes together, this project will begin next summer 2016. DOT wants to hire their own engineers and contractors for the railroad part. DOT is ready to begin engineering right now. They’re also doing some work by the Palouse Grain Grower elevators so DOT is proposing fixing the railroad all the way from the funeral home to the grain elevator. So the city stands to gain a whole bunch of new rail line with this project. TIB awards in November. There are approximately five property owners who will be directly affected so once the city knows if we get this award, a letter will go out to them. Councilmember Hicks MOVED to authorize the mayor to sign the TIB application for West Whitman Street. Councilmember Langsett seconded. Motion carried unanimously.

COMMITTEE REPORTS/REQUESTS:
Water & Sewer, Chair Ossinger-
The city received three letters of interest for the Citizen Advisory Group for the wastewater discharge process and WWTP upgrade: Bruce Baldwin, Tony Wright, and Carie Saunders. Mayor hereby appointed all three to the Citizen Advisory Group. Councilmember Ossinger MOVED to ratify the Mayor’s appointment to the Citizen Advisory Group. Councilmember Pearce seconded. Motion carried unanimously.

Streets & Sidewalks, Chair Hicks-
We’re considering putting a bid out for a new one ton. CT Bagott thinks the money can be there for the purchase if the price comes in where he suspects. DG forewent extra summer help so he has extra funds for this purchase. CT Bagott is trying to get fairly solid numbers and specs.
DG still wants to look into a new locator too.
Councilmember Hicks is still working on drafting the sidewalk letter.

Personnel & Pool, Chair Pearce- Pool is closing August 20th.

Finance, Property, & Equipment, Chair Langsett-
Councilmember Langsett attended the DOE meeting regarding the river and the dissolved oxygen levels, etc. He was very disappointed in DOE’s attitude regarding the financial end for the City of Palouse. The DOE rep’s attitude was basically “just get a loan” for $5 million every twenty years for a new sewer plant. Is today’s 20 year plant going to only be good for 10 years tomorrow? Councilmember Langsett did some research; this is a global issue all because of global warming. Increased temperatures and lower dissolved oxygen content is affecting ALL bodies of water. Mayor Echanove, Waste Water Treatment Plant Operator Myott, Clerk-Treasurer Bagott, and Dana Cowger from Varela spoke about the City’s concerns. The City just received another award for having one of the top performing plants in the state; we aren’t changing what we’re doing; they keep changing the rules. Our plant is only 20 years old. The city is proud of the fact that we have very little debt; but that may be a negative when looking for grant funds. Local cattle producers are also dealing with DOE water quality mandates. Debbie Snyder, representing local cattle producers, contacted City Hall to advise that they are collecting river data and will be happy to share their data with ours to see how it compares to DOE’s. The City has roughly two and a half years to deliver to DOE our plan. Last year, Palouse’s median income was too high and the sewer rate was too low to qualify for grant funding. Dana Cowger is going to go to the DOE funding meeting next week to see if funding thresholds have changed or there are any new funding opportunities. We will also be looking into planning funding from the Community Economic Revitalization Board (CERB).

OPEN FORUM:
Phyllis Montgomery. Can anything be done about her neighbor’s nuisance weed and trash infested yard. Mayor asked Chief Neumann to follow-up on that. Perhaps the city can send a letter to ask him to address these concerns.

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

ADJOURN: Councilmember Hicks MOVED to adjourn. Councilmember Estes seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 8:20 PM.

The following checks are approved for payment:
Payroll Paid 7/31/15, 24 employees Ck. #6767 – #6794 & EFT $49,638.59
Withdrawal 7/29/15 Ck. #6766 $ 500.00
Claims Paid 8/12/15 Ck. #6795 – #6825 & EFT $21,205.50

APPROVED: ________________________________ ATTEST: ________________________________