April 24, 2018

Palouse City Council

Regular Council Meeting

April 24, 2018

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

ROLL CALL: Council members present: Chris Cook; Tim Sievers; John Snyder; Rick Wekenman; Mark Wilcomb; Bob Stout. Absent: Councilmember Slinkard. Councilmember Sievers MOVED to excuse his absence, Councilmember Wilcomb seconded and motion carried. Staff present: Police Chief Jerry Neumann; Police Officer Joe Handley; City Administrator Kyle Dixon.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Councilmember Wekenman MOVED to adopt the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of April 10, 2018. Councilmember Cook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT: Supt Griffin submitted a written report. New roof is looking good on Whitman St shop.

POLICE REPORT: UI/WSU bicycle race had 80+ riders. A few minor concerns with motorists but all ended up ok. Volunteers for the race were up from previous years.

First aid training for officers has been completed.

Officer Anderson and Reserve Officer Snead completed impaired driving/DUI training course.

AED’s (automated external defibrillators) have arrived for police vehicles. Special thanks to McGregor’s, Palouse Grain Growers and Palouse Chamber for donated funds to make this possible.

Sgt. Lee Reed of Mabton Police Dept passed away this morning. He served with the Palouse Police Dept from 1995-1997. Chief Neumann was grateful for his service to our community.

JOINT FIRE BOARD REPORT: 1 fire, 8 EMS calls in March. Joe Handley has completed his national EMT certification. EMS unit will be participating in crop duster training in June, river rescue in July and will train at the grain growers site in May.


1ST Q Treasurer’s Report – No concerns. PD incurred some extra expense with new officer hire but nothing that should require a budget amendment.

CA Dixon, Councilmembers Slinkard and Wekenman, wastewater engineers Varela & Associates met with land owner at city hall to discuss a site the city is looking into for potential development for wastewater treatment. Dixon submitted a grant application to Whitman County Commissioners to develop walking trail/green space on recently donated land between shady lane and Palouse River. BRATC (Blue Ribbon Advisory Task Committee), committee charged with providing recommendations to Commissioners regarding available funds, have recommended an award of roughly $32,000 for this project. Commissioners will announce final awards on May 7th. Dixon will organize a follow-up Brownfields committee meeting in May once contract with Maul Foster (environmental engineers) is finalized to provide ongoing consulting services through the completion of property transfer. Dixon will be at State Auditor workshop on Wednesday to finalize city’s 2017 annual report. Dixon and City Attorney Hanson discussed next steps the city will take if owner of Palouse Arms building does not comply with order to address concerns previously indicated by council.


TD&H water-tower update: Final cultural report was completed by Plateau and submitted to DAHP. Remainder of process to finalize application to USDA will be completed upon finalization of de-obligation of area of cemetery. If city proceeds with project, water system update will be included.


Proposal from Parametrix for annexation into Fisher’s Addition: Mayor Echanove outlined the annexation policies and procedures. Angela Taylor from Parametrix, representing the owner of the property, outlined their plan to annex and develop ten platted lots into Fisher’s Addition. Development outlined construction of 9 triplexes, or 27 units, to be zoned into R1 low density residential with a conditional use permit through the Board of Adjustment to allow for said triplexes. Angela took questions from council and the audience. Arguments in favor included increased tax base, boost for local business, affordable housing, among others. Arguments against included concern about population density given the surrounding neighborhood, increased traffic, city services, among others. Extended discussion ensued. Councilmember Stout MOVED to reject the preliminary proposal for annexation. Councilmember Cook seconded. Motion carried. Councilmember Wekenman voted against.


Personnel & Pool, Chair Cook- Working on different strategies to hire lifeguards. Councilmember Cook is looking at avenues to incentivize applicants. Discussed bumping wages and reimbursements for lifeguard certifications. Councilmember Stout MOVED, seconded by Councilmember Wilcomb to increase entry level lifeguard wage to $12.00/hr and provide $100 lifeguard certification reimbursement upon successful completion of summer lifeguarding season.

Finance, Property, & Equipment, Chair Stout- Councilmember Stout sits on Palouse Community Action Center board. He is impressed by how they operate and Palouse could benefit from some ideas they have about how we can provide smart growth to our city.

MAYOR’S REPORT: Mayor and CA Dixon attended a conference in Cle Elum to present success of Solar Farm.

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

The following checks are approved for payment:

Claims Paid 4/24/18 Ck. # 9133-9149 & EFT $13,573.64

ADJOURN: Councilmember Wilcomb MOVED to adjourn. Councilmember Stout seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 9:10 PM.

APPROVED: ________________________________ ATTEST: ________________________________