February 22, 2005


February 22, 2005

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

ROLL CALL: Council members present were: Norm Schorzman, John Sell, Jeff Snook, Linda Dillard (late 7:05PM), Dave Willmore, Steve McGehee, and Rick Wekenman. Also present were: Joyce Beeson, Clerk-Treasurer; Bev Pearce, Deputy City Clerk; Byron Hodges, Public Works Superintendent; Randy Zehm, Police Chief; Megan Doyle-Moscow-Pullman Daily News; Robert Strack; Larry Hunt; Shawn Tompkins; Janet Barstow-Boomerang.


APPROVAL OF MINUTES: The following items were corrected: Building Inspector Report: line # 3-change was to is; Policy & Administration b. Outdoor Burning: clarification of council’s agreement of a non burn ban.

Jeff Snook MOVED to approve the corrected minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of February 8, 2005. Steve McGehee seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.



  1. Shawn Tompkins-Signs for Shady Lane Trail

Shawn presented to council an example of 10 sign posts he wishes to place along the Shady Lane Trail. He asked for ideas on permanent letter for the signs. The council members gave Shawn a few different options to explore. The Mayor asks council if they would be interested in helping Shawn financially with the permanent lettering part of the signs. Council Member Sell suggested that the council wait until Shawn has cost estimates. The council gave a general approval for Shawn to post the signs along the trail.

  1. Bob Strack-owner of St. Elmo Building-Water and Sewer Charges

Bob voiced concern over the current charges for citizens to hook up to current water and sewer connections. He stated that the current structure for charging is outdated and feels that the charges are out of line with the work that is done. He asked council to look at the fees and readjust them to what it actually costs the city to connect a new service for water and sewer. He suggested charging by the job, not a flat fee. Council Member McGehee asked if Bob had compared the cost to other cities. Strack said no, and he had not compared rent to other cities either, he continued by saying that what happens in other cities shouldn’t affect issues in Palouse. The Mayor explained that when you hook up to the water and sewer service, you are buying into a $1 million dollar infrastructure. The matter will be passed to the Water and Sewer committee for review. Bob wished to be notified of the next council meeting that this item will be on the agenda.

  1. Larry Hunt- Complaint on City Employee

Larry submitted a written complaint about a city employee four months ago and had not received any response. He stated that he has an attorney ready to take on this issue. The Mayor said that he did receive the complaint and apologized for not responding to Mr. Hunt. The Mayor continued by stating that he did speak to the city attorney about the complaint as well as the employee’s superior. Council Member Willmore MOVED to adjourn to executive session to discuss this personnel issue. Council Member Schorzman seconded the motion and the motion carried. Council adjourn to executive session at 7:34PM. Council returned at 8:07 PM.


PUBLIC WORKS REPORT : Written Report Submitted By Byron Hodges

Byron added to his report that Marc has started to paint the parking lines on Main Street.

Don and Byron will begin laying 250 feet of new water line on the North Hill, off of Tamarack. This new line will run down the alley way.


POLICE DEPARTMENT REPORT: Written report submitted by Chief Zehm

Chief Zehm added to his report that the Police Department received a $9,999 grant from the Local Law Enforcement Block Grant. The chief applied for this grant to help replace the Crown Victoria. Council Members asked the Chief if the car would be surplused or traded in. The chief said both options would be reviewed. The Mayor commented on the resignation of Chief Zehm stating that he has been an asset to the city and will be greatly missed. Council Member Schorzman wished the chief the best of luck, and complimented him on a job well done here in Palouse.



No new business was presented to the council.






  1. Window Bids – The city received three bids for replacing windows in the back of Legion Hall, above City Hall. Moscow Glass and Awning, Inc., provided two bids, one with one sliding window- $1294.43 and a second with two sliding windows-$1393.42; Norms Custom Glass, Inc.-$1512.21 and Sims Glass Inc.-$1538.68. Council Member Sell since the money is already in the budget, he recommends that the city take the low bid for option #2 from Moscow Glass and Awning. The council agreed.
  2. Resolutions 2005-01 – The Mayor read Resolution 2005-01, which states that the City of Palouse adopts the 2005 Whitman County Solid Waste Management Plan. The Mayor ask the council to allow the him to sign the resolution. Council Member McGehee MOVED to allow the Mayor and council to sign the agreement. Council Member Willmore seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
  3. Heritage Park Update – Council Member Snook stated that the plumber is almost done, installation of dry wall, stall and bathroom accessories need to be done. The cost of the stalls range from $1,000 to $2,357. The budget is at $7,300, with $5,400 allocated for plumber cost. The Mayor asked the council to consider allocating another $2,500 from the CDBG HUD house funds to finish this project. Council Member Sell suggested looking at WSU surplus stores for bathroom stalls. Byron Hodges voiced concern over stability and rust problems. Council Member Sell suggested stainless steel mounts be used for the stalls. The council agreed to transfer $2,500 to the Heritage park fund to finish the project.



The Mayor reported that there is interest from the Lions Club to fix the sidewalk area in front of their building on West Main Street. An idea presented to build new sidewalks in front of the old flathouse in addition to the Lions W. Main building if the city would buy all the concrete was discussed. With the ownership and use of the property still up in the air no decision could be made. This offer will be discussed in committee.

No Report

Superintendent Hodges submitted to the building committee member John Sell a proposal for a new Public Works building and Recreation Vehicle Park. The proposal outlines the work needed for a new building and the health concerns of the location of the current building in relation to the pump house. The idea of an RV park stems from a growing need for this type of facility within the city. The proposed new site would in front of the old warehouse on West Main Street across from the park.

Council Member Snook reported that he had committee meeting in regards to a new pool manager. Snook MOVED to go into executive session at the end of the regular council meeting to discuss the pool manager applicants. Council Member Wekenman seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.


Council Member Snook reported that a couple of issues needed to be brought before the council. 1) Fire Chief Bagott would like to apply for a FEMA grant for a new pumper tanker truck. Council Member Snook MOVED to allow the chief apply for this grant and allow the Mayor to sign the application. Council Member Wekenman seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. 2) The Joint Fire Board would like to surplus the old ambulance and the old tanker truck. Council Member McGehee MOVED to allow the JFB to surplus these two vehicles. Council Member Willmore seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. 3) The council ratified the Joint Board decision to allocate an additional $5,000 of their budget to complete work on the two new fire vehicles.

No Report

WATER & SEWER : David Willmore
Council Member Willmore reported that the committee met and looked at the Statements of Qualifications for engineering services submitted to the city. The committee is looking for engineering to finalize the plan for the Fisher’s Addition sewer extension project. The projected cost of an engineered plan is $60,000. The committee will meet again to further discuss this issue.

POLICE, FIRE & SAFETY : Rick Wekenman
Council Member Wekenman met with Chief Zehm to discuss the procedure of hiring a new police chief. The cities insurance company, Canfield and Associates can for a small fee run background checks on the applicants. Officer Grass will serve as interim Chief and report directly to the Mayor. The process to hire a Chief may take 3 to 6 months. Council Member McGehee MOVED to begin immediate action to find a new Police Chief. Council Member Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. Council Member McGehee MOVED to form a temporary selection committee to review the application process and screen the applicants. Council Member Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council continued to discuss advertising for a new chief. Council Member McGehee stated that council would need to decide whether or not to maintain a two-man police department. This decision would bear directly on the job description. Council Member Willmore stated that he supports a one man department. Council Member McGehee MOVED to maintain a two man police department. Council Member Wekenman seconded the motion. Council Member McGehee MOVED to table the discussion until the next council meeting. Council Member Sell seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

The Mayor reported that Canfield and Associates did an inspection of the Public Works shop building. The Department of Ecology performed a flood plain review of the city and passed with a good report.

The Mayor and Council Member Wekenman will be attending a Hazard Mitigation meeting on Thursday. The Mayor reminded council members to attend the Canfield and Associates Council work shop at city hall on Wednesday, March 2 at 5:30PM. Jackie Strack approached the Mayor about hanging planter’s downtown. The two hanging sites proposed were the lamp posts or using shepherds rods, placed in the ground next to the trees on Main Street. Clerk-Treasurer Beeson said that the lamp post manufacturer said that putting hanging planters on the lamp posts would not be possible. The council did not make any decision on the shepherd’s rod.


Next Council Meeting at the High School Library, March 8, due to election



ALLOW PAYMENT OF BILLS: Norm Schorzman MOVED that the bills against the city be allowed.

Steve McGehee seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

The Council moved into executive session at 9:45 PM to discuss pool personnel issues. Regular session reconvened at 9:52 PM. The council will proceed with offering a promotion to Toshia Smith as pool manager.


ADJOURN: Jeff Snook MOVED to adjourn. Rick Wekenman seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 9:57 PM.


The following vouchers/warrants are approved for payment:

Claims Paid                   Warrants: # 10938     through # 109358             Payment: $10,003.76






APPROVED:________________________________ ATTEST:________________________________