October 23, 2007

October 23, 2007

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

ROLL CALL:  Council members present were:  Darcie Bagott; Mark Bailey; Mike Milano; Andy O’Neill; Norm Schorzman; Jeff Snook; Absent was:  Rick Wekenman.  Also present were: Clerk-Treasurer Joyce Beeson; Public Works Superintendent Dwayne Griffin; Police Chief Jerry Neumann; Deputy Clerk Bev Pearce; City Attorney Stephen Bishop.  Public present were:  Heather McGehee; Bridger Landle; Dale Tronsen.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:   Darcie Bagott MOVED to approve the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of October 9, 2007. Jeff Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

OPEN FORUM :  The Mayor stated that the council will not entertain any comments regarding personnel issues of city staff.  Bridger Landle presented to council his Eagle Scout project: installing a flag pole and sidewalk area at the Public Safety Building.  He is requesting from the city a small amount of gravel, enough to cover a 31” x 36” 6” deep area, a tamper, scrap lumber to use for concrete forms, rebar, backhoe use to move gravel and the boulders.  Public Works Superintendent Dwayne Griffin volunteered his time for the project.  Council Member O’Neill asked who would oversee the concrete work.  Bridger said that Will Woltering has agreed to lend his assistance.  The Lions Club is funding the cost of the concrete.  Bridger plans to start Saturday, October 27.  The Building inspector approved the aid of Will Woltering on this project.  Council Member Schorzman MOVED to accept Bridger Landle’s Eagle Scout project of installing a flag pole and sidewalk at the Public Safety Building utilizing city assets along with Lions Club donations.  Council Member Snook seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.  Council Member Snook asked Bridger to present a complete finished report on the project.

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT:  Dwayne Griffin submitted a written report.  He added that Poe would start paving at the Public Safety Building (PSB), Alder Street and the compost facility.  The well telemetry system is still having minor problems, but is operational.  The crew moved sludge to our application site; this is the first batch from the new press.  This process has saved the crew a lot of time.  Dwayne told council that Marc Arrasmith has requested using 120 hours of his vacation from December 10-28.  The council gave its approval.  The Mayor reported that pre-engineering for the chip seal project on Palouse Cove Road is ready for city approval.  He passed this on to Dwayne to follow through.

POLICE DEPARTMENT REPORT:  Chief Neumann reported that the department has increased its patrol on Main Street, making contact with people who illegally make U-Turns in the middle of the street.  He estimates that about ¼ of the contacts are local citizens, with the remainder being out-of-town visitors.  The department impounded a dog that turned out to be involved in a stolen animal case which is being investigated by Whitman County Sheriff’s Department.  On Saturday night Reserve officer Eaton was involved in a routine traffic stop which turned into 2 arrests involving illegal possession of weapons, DUI, poaching and driving without a license.  This arrest involved other agencies as well.  There have been reports of deer-vehicle collisions.  Chief Neumann attended two trainings, one in Colfax for Excited Delirium arrests and in Moses Lake, a Law Enforcement Liability seminar.  Both events provided good information.  He said the city needs to update its Policy and Procedure handbook.  Haunted Palouse went well, there was one incident that occurred in the corn maze and that is continuing to be investigated.  Council Member Milano told the chief that a citizen would like to donate to the city’s drug education program.  The Chief said that this could be handled through the department with the proceeds going to either the Whitman County program or our own program through the school.

BUILDING INSPECTOR REPORT: Dan Gladwill reported that permitting has picked up, more than last year.  He reported that 1/3 of his work is answering questions from citizens prior to their projects.  This helps them do their projects correctly and in a timely manner.  The Mayor told council that he is considering a change to Dan’s contract.  .  Dan would like to attend council meetings quarterly, unless requested, as opposed to the original once a month.  His request is based on his frequent trips to Palouse throughout the month.  The council suggested a monthly handwritten report be submitted in lieu of attendance.  Dan agreed to that.  Council Member Snook MOVED to allow the Mayor to enter into the updated contract with Dan Gladwill as the Building Inspector.  Council Member Schorzman seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.


A.   ADA Compliance Walk-Through
On October 18, Council Members Bagott and Milano, Chief Neumann and Joyce Beeson walked through the city downtown area, the Police Station and the city park with Mark Leeper and Steve Corr from the Disability Action Center (DAC) of Moscow.  The DAC provided to the city a report with the following suggestions:  signage changes for sight- impaired citizens; apply a protective barrier on the sink pipes at the City Park bathroom; and add signage at the police station noting that the station is not manned and providing phone numbers for contact.  Overall the city has proved due diligence and will make some necessary changes during the Whitman Street project.

A.   Review Breeding’s Sewer Extension Bids
Five bids were delivered to the city on Tuesday, by 2PM.  Joyce Beeson and Munir Daud opened the bids.
A & R Construction  – $159,071.30; Crea Construction – $219,052.83; M L Albright & Sons, Inc – $256,329.54; Motley-Motley, Inc. – $300,368.53; Ace Elliott Landscaping – $301,748.37.
The city attorney, Stephen Bishop told council that they are obligated to choose the lowest responsible bidder.  Council Member Schorzman MOVED to accept A & R Construction’s as the lowest responsible bid.  Council Member O’Neill seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.  The project could start within the next 90 days.  Dale Tronsen commented that he was glad and proud that this project has moved forward, it is a win-win situation for the entire town.  The city will work with Stephen Bishop to develop the repayment program.

B.   Review SR27/Palouse River Mobile Home Acquisition agreement with Ecology
The Mayor reported that he has not received the agreement from the Department of Ecology but it is on the way.  Mayor Echanove reminded council that this project is in the budget and we are ready to spend our cash match along with Ecology’s share and our In-kind contributions.

C.   2008 Budget Discussion
The Mayor reminded council that the date is drawing near for adopting 2008 final Budget. Public hearings were set for November 13th and November 27th, and to be voted on December 11th.  The council reviewed the 2008 Budget as presented.

D.  3rd Quarter Treasurer’s Report- Joyce Beeson
Joyce presented her report.  She encouraged the council to come into city hall and review all financial reports. The Mayor explained the importance of this.  There is a log and after each review the council member must sign the log.

Discussion on the contract between the city and USGS to jointly maintain the river gauge took place.  Council Member Milano MOVED to authorize the Mayor to sign the contract with the USGS.  Council Member Bailey seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.


STREETS & SIDEWALKS: Council Member Bagott has been talking to the WSDOT representative about proper signage for pedestrian traffic in Palouse.  The city would like to see better, not more, signage for the increase of foot traffic in town.  Darcie said if WSDOT received letters of concern from citizens, it would move the issue along.

PARKS, CEMETERY & BUILDINGS:  Mike Milano reported that he and Dwayne have met about drainage issues at the RV Park.  In November or December the purchasing of materials will begin and the bid for electrical work should go out next month.

PERSONNEL & POOL:   Jeff Snook reported on the Joint Fire Board (JFB).  Chief Bagott would like to pursue a $16,000 DNR grant for equipment for the department.  Council Member Milano MOVED to ratify the JFB decision to allow Fire Chief Bagott to apply for the $16,000  DNR grant for equipment with a 50% match, $4,000 from city, $4,000 from rural.  Council Member Schorzman seconded the motion.  The motion carried unanimously.  Chief Bagott has determined it would not be productive at this time to pursue any grants for a replacement truck.

POLICY & ADMINISTRATION:  Mark Bailey reported that he has applied for a $10,000 grant through Whitman County to expand the compost facility.

MAYOR’S REPORT : The Mayor reported that in regards to the 2007 Audit the proceeds from Real Estate Excise Tax (REET) needs to be allocated to Capital Improvement fund.  Currently the funds are receipted into the Building Maintenance Reserve fund.  The auditors reported that the Planning Commission needs to determine where the funds should go through the Comprehensive Plan.  The commission discussed this and recommends that half should go to the Building Maintenance Reserve fund and half to Park Improvement fund. Council Member Bailey said that the commission would like to see the changes take place in 2009.  Clerk Beeson will work on a resolution for the change.

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

ADJOURN:  Darcie Bagott MOVED to adjourn. Jeff Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.  The council meeting adjourned at 8:30 PM.

The following vouchers/warrants are approved for payment:

Claims Paid                   Warrants: #12652          through #12665  Payments:  $15,240.00

APPROVED: ________________________________   ATTEST: ________________________________