November 10, 2020

DRAFT ONLY.  Without council review or approval.

Palouse City Council

Public Hearing – 2021 Preliminary Budget

Followed by

Regular Council Meeting via ZOOM teleconferencing

November 10, 2020


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


ROLL CALL: Council members present: Mary Welcome; Bill Slinkard; Tim Sievers; John Snyder; Jim Fielder; Steve Alred; Katie Cooper. Staff present: Police Chief Jerry Neumann; City Administrator Kyle Dixon.



No written comments received.


APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Councilmember Alred MOVED to approve the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of October 27, 2020. Councilmember Fielder seconded. Motion carried.


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


POLICE REPORT:  Chief Neumann submitted the police log.



2021 Budget prep ongoing but nearly complete. Possibly ready for adoption at our next council meeting, but no later than December 8th meeting. With the onset of the pandemic and uncertainty of how the economic shutdown will impact revenues in 2021, CA Dixon is not recommending any staff salary increases or decreases for next year.


Old John Deere tractor used for plowing sidewalks is at the end of its useful life and breaks down frequently. Local resident Phyllis Montgomery offered her ATV w/ plow, trailer, and winch at a significant discount as a gesture of gratitude for everything the city crew does. A big thanks to her.


Ordinances for adoption of annual 1% property tax increase for General and EMS levies will be ready at our next meeting.


We heard back from two sign companies last week regarding SGT Jacob Demand Way and will likely proceed with purchasing 5 from the lower offer later this week.


Planning Commission update: Chair Echanove updated council on the Planning Commission’s discussion on Accessory Dwelling Units and how or if the city would like to incorporate these into our existing code. Commission is considering requirements such as separate water/sewer hookups, residence requirements for property owners, minimum lot size, additional permitting process..etc…Commission will continue research and draft recommendation to city council when ready. This process will take time. They are looking at what other entities are doing to address this topic as well.





Staff Compensation and Benefits Proposal: Chair Snyder and Mayor Cook gave a brief overview of work done to date to develop a salary and benefits model that serves city staff and stakeholders in a responsible fashion. Future salary increases will be based on formula that accounts for marketplace averages of similar entities and would also incorporate Direct Job Experience, Longevity with the City of Palouse, and Merit increases supported by staff evaluations. If approved, the model and evaluation process would be implemented in 2021 with any compensation adjustments beginning in 2022. Discussion ensued. Councilmember Sievers MOVED to approve the compensation model [with correction of discrepancy in outstanding merit adjustment scale from 1.6-3.0% to 1.1-3.0%] beginning in 2021. Councilmember Snyder seconded. Motion carries.



Budget, Finance, & Major Acquisitions, Chair Welcome


Streets, Property & Facilities, Chair Sievers-



Personnel, Chair Snyder- Chair Snyder thanked those who submitted feedback during the compensation model discussion.


Water & Sewer Slinkard-


Policy & Administration, Chair Cooper- Planning to schedule follow up meeting to discuss potentially setting limits on number of cats that property owners are allowed to keep.


Joint Fire Board, Chair Fielder-


MAYOR’S REPORT– Reiterated thanks for those who submitted feedback for compensation model discussions. Still planning to meet with ECY this month regarding wastewater funding. Council discussed complaint received regarding property appearances. Proposed Spring-cleaning event will be an opportunity to address areas that may be in violation of junk, health, and safety Ordinances. Chief Neumann has been working with property owner to address these issues.


ALLOW PAYMENT OF BILLS:  Councilmember Slinkard MOVED that the bills against the city be allowed.  Councilmember Welcome seconded. The motion carried.


The following checks are approved for payment:

Payroll Paid      10/31/2020        Ck. #11197-11213 & EFT           $45,343.82

Claims Paid      11/10/2020        Ck. #11214-11257 & EFT           $42,844.58


ADJOURN:  Councilmember Fielder MOVED to adjourn. Councilmember Sievers seconded. Motion carried. The council meeting adjourned at 7:53 PM.




APPROVED: ________________________________   ATTEST: ________________________________