August 23, 2011

DRAFT ONLY. Without council review or approval.
August 23, 2011

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

ROLL CALL: Council members present: Cecil Floyd; Tim Jones; Mike Milano; Jeff Snook. Absent: Connie Newman; Norm Schorzman; Rick Wekenman. Also present: Public Works Superintendent Dwayne Griffin; Police Chief Jerry Neumann; Clerk-Treasurer Joyce Beeson; & Deputy Clerk Ann Thompson. Councilmember Newman is on family vacation; Councilmember Wekenman is working harvest; and Councilmember Schorzman is working. Councilmember Milano MOVED, seconded by Councilmember Snook to excuse their absences. Motion carried unanimously. Public present: Katrina Shelton

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Under Brownfields Update, change wording as follows “….EPA has presented the opportunity for 100% financing…..” Councilmember Floyd MOVED to adopt the amended minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of August 9, 2011. Councilmember Jones seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT: The stop sign at Bridge and Main has been extended out and the tree trimmed to improve visibility. Pool is closed. Chip Seal project on Church St. and Bridge St. went well. Have repaired some water leaks and replaced some valves.

Approval to apply to TIB Small Cities Pavement Preservation (SCPP) for Chip Seal in 2012. Supt. Griffin put together an application for a 0% match grant for $49,876 for three segments of chip seal next year. The county confirmed that they would do the work, which will improve the economy of scale. Councilmember Snook MOVED, seconded by Councilmember Jones authorizing the Mayor to sign the application to the TIB SCPP Application. Motion carried unanimously.

POLICE REPORT: Will increase morning and afternoon patrols to get drivers back in the mindset that school is in. We’re hoping to begin the work on the PD by the end of August. We’ve put off the purchase of the replacement vehicle until January. The Mohr Street house is now sold and the former residents have moved away.

JFB REPORT: Councilmember Snook submitted a written report. The 2012 budget was discussed and approved. EMS expenses are high due to items with a limited shelf life. The federal grant program opened and Chief Bagott is working on a proposal for wild land turnout gear and structure fire helmets for a total of about $20,000 with approximately $2,000 match. 3 Fire calls in July, 10 ytd; 5 EMS calls in July, 30 ytd. They’ve been very busy with trainings.

Resolution 2011-10: Authorizing the direct receipt of a portion of the general property tax levy in the Street Fund. Mayor read aloud the resolution in its entirety. Authorizes the receipt of 35% of the general levy directly into the Street Fund (101) where it can be appropriated to all other functions within the Street Fund. We’ve always done this but the auditors wanted to see it formalized as a resolution rather than part of the budget cycle. Councilmember Milano MOVED to adopt Resolution 2011-10. Seconded by Councilmember Jones. Motion carried unanimously.

OPEN FORUM: Katrina Shelton requested the speed limit on Union Street be dropped to 20 MPH. Councilmember Floyd MOVED, seconded by Councilmember Milano to continue discussion on this topic. Motion carried unanimously. Discussion ensued. The stop sign at Wall and Union has helped. During the PD’s emphasis patrols in the area, there haven’t been any documented excessive speeds, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen; it’s just not possible to be there 24/7. They are narrow streets with no sidewalks so pedestrians should also be using common sense. We’ve also received complaints of children playing in the streets. Options discussed: lowering speed limit, giving tickets, more signage, speed bumps, sidewalks. This will go to the street committee for review.


Parks, Cemetery, & Buildings-Tim Jones. Chair:
Reminder that we’re having the Palouse Native Plant Walk dedication and river clean up this Saturday.
YTD we’ve sold 186 nights at the RV Park for a gross of $4,650.00. It’s on track at netting 60% for the general fund.
Discussion about the city shed. It’s 100 years old and beyond repair. Another problem being that it’s in the flood plain. Chairman Jones will look at the whole picture with Supt. Griffin.

Streets & Sidewalks-Cecil Floyd, Chair:
TIB grant application for Mohr Street Project is done and awaiting Mayor’s signature for submittal. It falls under the sidewalk preservation program which may mean a 0% match instead of 5%.

Regarding the Cove Road project, Taylor Engineering split the project in half for pricing. From Union Street up to city limits, which is the lower priority, is $143,000 with city match of $7,000. The portion from Union down to the bridge is $250,000, with city match of $12,000. The match is a concern for the budgeting; one possibility is a federal grant for a bicycle/pedestrian lane with TIB providing the match. Federal money liability is a concern because of high administrative costs. This is an option to consider since the cost of street projects has increased, reducing the reserve balance in the street fund. Councilmember Floyd will work on this for application next year.

Regarding the low visibility of the stop sign at Main and Bridge, there is a product called Pre-Mark which is a non-paint “STOP” legend to put on the road. WSU uses it. It lasts longer than paint. $240 for the legend, $150 shipping, and it requires a special torch to put down. Cecil will continue looking into it. Councilmember Floyd MOVED, seconded by Councilmember Milano, to authorize the chair to proceed with this project after first clearing it with Supt. Griffin and Clerk Beeson. Motion carried unanimously.

Cecil forwarded to Chief Neumann some complaints about speeding on Union Street and on Hwy 272 to city limits (Colfax highway). Chief Neumann noted all concerns.

Personnel & Pool-Jeff Snook, Chair: A personnel and finance combo meeting was held to discuss budgetary and organizational issues with the swim team. There are budgetary concerns with the payroll costs associated with the swim team. Over the years things have slowly morphed into the current situation of paying swim team coaches for practice, meet times and travel time to out-of-town meets. Also, there is an insurance concern that the city is paying paid staff while outside city limits and in their own vehicles.

Jeff presented two options:
The first option is to adopt a formal responsibility for swim team. The swim team would be set up as a program offered by the city. Fees would be paid to the city and those fees would go towards offsetting expenses.

The second option is the city would continue providing the facility and also lifeguards only for practice and home swim meets. The coaches and all other staff needs would be the responsibility of a separate swim team organization, similar to GPAC or little league baseball. This option represents a savings of approximately $2,000 a year to the pool budget.

The city is making a significant contribution, it just may be more of a contribution than originally intended and a decision needs to be made. Councilmember Snook MOVED, seconded by Jones, to table this topic for further discussion. Motion carried unanimously.

Grant of Easement from Port of Whitman. Mayor read aloud portions of the document. Atty. Bishop reviewed and, while he has not confirmed the legal description, the rest of the document looked good. In short, the port wants an easement going down the west side of the fire station, straight down over the hill to Whitman Street. Joe Poire from the Port will attend next council meeting to review the route. We need to pay particular attention to how the Port gets the line down Main Street to the health clinic and library. Councilmember Milano MOVED authorizing the Mayor to sign the Grant of Easement once Atty. Bishop is satisfied with the legal description. Seconded by Councilmember Snook. Motion carried unanimously.

Clerk Beeson will be sending out her call for budgets within the next two weeks.

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

ADJOURN: Councilmember Milano MOVED to adjourn. Councilmember Jones seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 9:02 PM.

The following checks are approved for payment:
Claims Paid Ck. No. 3388 – 3399 $5,962.00

APPROVED: ________________________________ ATTEST: ________________________________