July 12, 2016

Palouse City Council

Regular Council Meeting

July 12, 2016

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

ROLL CALL: Council members present: Bill Slinkard; Mike Hicks; Senja Estes; Rick Wekenman; Mark Wilcomb; Christopher Langsett. Councilmember Estes MOVED to excuse Councilmember Hanson’s absence. Councilmember Langsett seconded and the motion carried unanimously. Staff present: Police Chief Jerry Neumann; Clerk-Treasurer Mike Bagott; & Deputy Clerk Ann Thompson.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Councilmember Wekenman MOVED to adopt the minutes of the Special Council Meeting of June 28, 2016. Councilmember Hicks seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

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

Busch Distributors and Roach Construction need council permission to work in city right-of-way to work on the Busch Gas Station construction project. Councilmember Hicks MOVED to approve permission for Roach Construction and Busch Distributors to work in city right-of-way. Councilmember Wilcomb seconded. Motion carried unanimously.

Supt. Griffin would like council permission to surplus an old metal 8’x14’ 4” flatbed off the old water truck. Councilmember Hicks MOVED, seconded by Councilmember Slinkard, to surplus the old flatbed via sealed bid, with a minimum bid of $100, and a closing date of July 25, 2016, at 3:00 pm. Motion carried unanimously.


The camera installation at the PD is completed. We also did a site review with First Step Internet at the sewer plant for how we are going to mount the cameras and install the data terminal etc.

The application for database access has been completed. We have a site security review next week. Once that’s done and approved we’ll have a meeting with Whitcom to see about getting up and running.


CT Bagott’s last day is July 29th. The next council meeting is his last as an employee.

2nd Q Treasurer’s Report: Revenues throughout all funds are within expectations. The trend I’m seeing is rebound in some of those areas that have been fairly depressed for a while. Sales tax revenue is up 17.1% over this same period last year; Building Permits have already exceeded budget for the year; City Assistance (shared revenues from the state) up 24.9% which is $3,000 additional revenue. Liquor excise tax is already 113% of what we had budgeted; RV Park is $8 away from reaching the entire amount budgeted for revenue for whole year. On the expenditure side there are no red flags. Pool will be close to its budget this year. Cemetery is going to be tight budget this year, revenue isn’t really generated up there other than rare grave sales or open/close and there’s no way to predict those revenues.

Quarterly report on the police confidential fund. No expenditures to date. It continues to sit at $500 in cash.

A Tekoa councilperson called and spoke with CT Bagott about some crime concerns they’re having. They currently contract with the sheriff’s department and are considering switching to their own police department again. They’re seeking alternatives and perhaps a cost vs. benefit discussion. They’re just brainstorming. Chief Neumann has done some cost vs benefit reports and will call this councilperson.

Solar update: CT Bagott has gotten all the requested documentation to the Dept. of Commerce so our grant contract can be created. There will have to be one or two budget amendments to get all the revenue and expenditures into the budget. This should be tidy with the expectation that nearly all of the expenditures and revenues will be recorded this year. We will know in August what our final loan terms will be through the LOCAL program. LOCAL representatives have advised that we will receive a better rate (60 to 75 basis points) by dropping our funding term from 15 years to 13 years. CT Bagott conferred with Finance Chair Langsett and Mayor Echanove to confirm that this was acceptable and has advised LOCAL to make the change.

WWTP update: Have finally received formal notice of loan award from DOE to assist in funding the remaining portion of the Wastewater Treatment Plan. CT Bagott will be in contact with DOE to finalize the terms.


Personnel & Pool Committee – interviewed seven people for the CT position and have narrowed it down to their final two candidates. City staff will meet with them this week.

Water & Sewer, Chair Slinkard- Has been gathering information and getting acquainted with the committee expectations. Plans to meet next week with Public Works to tour the sewer plant and the wells.

Streets & Sidewalks, Chair Hicks- Wrote a rough draft follow-up letter to send to the sidewalk repair recipients. It will accompany the mandatory resolution from the city attorney.


Charlotte Omoto – Charlotte is a “National Drive Electric Week” advocate. She wants the City of Palouse’s blessing to host an informative event Sept. 10 in the City Park. Additionally, she will rent two RV spaces in our park for those people needing to charge electric vehicles. Palouse supports renewable energy; between our LED lights and are soon to be completed solar project, council thinks this is a great idea.


Jim Farr sent another complaint against the mayor, not liking his response regarding his water. The city is not going to build a water distribution to his property. The Dept. of Health has told Mr. Farr on how they need to do that and that’s the final answer.

A notice from the Wa. State Liquor Board for a beer garden on July 30 during the Palouse Music Festival. No council objections. The PD has had no problems with this in the past.

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

The following checks are approved for payment:

Payroll Paid 6/30/16 Ck. #7538-7563 & EFT $44,876.99

Claims Paid 7/12/16 Ck. #7564-7591 & EFT $14,741.25

ADJOURN: Councilmember Hicks MOVED to adjourn. Councilmember Estes seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 8:25 PM.

APPROVED: ________________________________ ATTEST: ________________________________