October 27, 2009

October 27, 2009

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

ROLL CALL:   Council members present:  Darcie Bagott; Mark Bailey; Mike Milano; Norm Schorzman; Jeff Snook; & Rick Wekenman.  Absent: Andy O’Neill.  Also present: Public Works Superintendent Dwayne Griffin; Police Chief Jerry Neumann; Officer Joe Merry; City Attorney Stephen Bishop (7:22); Clerk-Treasurer Joyce Beeson.  Public present:  Nathan Kite, Linda Snook, Tyler Barstow, Mary Rothlisberger, Tiana Gregg, Emmy Gregg, Jon Fleischman, Tracy Milano.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:   Councilmember Wekenman added the word “mower” behind John Deere in the finance report.  Councilmember Bagott  MOVED to adopt the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of October 13, 2009 as amended.  Councilmember Milano seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Councilmember Bailey MOVED to excuse Mayor Echanove and Councilmember O’Neill from the last meeting (10/13/09).  Councilmember Wekenman seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT:     Supt. Griffin reported the H St and Alder St storm drain systems are working great.  Currently they are picking up leaves, preparing for snow and working on the 300’ water extension to Kessler’s.  Councilmember Snook asked if a snow removal policy is necessary and Griffin said yes.  Councilmember Bagott said she would begin to develop a policy through the Street & Sidewalk committee.  Mayor Echanove asked how much is budgeted for the 1-Ton replacement in 2010.  It was determined that $20-$25K is in the budget for all costs of the purchase including retrofitting to their needs.  Mayor pointed out how important the 1-Ton is in the operations of Public Works.  It is especially run hard during the snow season.  Council asked if repairs have been made to the North Hill water reservoir.  No repairs have been made.  Mayor pointed out that the reservoir is over 100 years old and we should continue to look into available funding for the South Hill reservoir.

POLICE REPORT :   Haunted Palouse is going well, with no incidents to report.

Red Ribbon week is underway at the school with grades 1 – 5 participating.  Chief Neumann explained that Red Ribbon Week was started in 1985 to honor a DEA agent killed in the line of duty.  It is a national program that goes into schools to explain about the dangers of using drugs.

Mayor asked if RV Park operations are going good.  PD and Public Works both answered yes.  Councilmember Milano said that during winter months perhaps the outside water should not re available to use.  Information is going out that reservations will not be taken after mid November until early next spring.  He also reported that thanks to a donation by Jim & Ruth Cochran, a tree planting program will begin at the RV Park next spring.  Councilmember Milano suggested that the city match the $500 donation in the 2010 budget.  Mayor Echanove asked and it was confirmed that the tree trimming program at the City Park will continue in the 2010 budget.

JOINT BOARD FIRE & EMS :  Councilmember Wekenman reported they are under budget for 2009.  There were two fire calls in September.  No word on their grant application.  He also reported that they need storage for the old Dodge fire truck.  They would like to keep it in good condition for use in parades.  The EMS had 5 calls in September with a total of 51 YTD.   Curtis Arrasmith will be honored November 16, 7:00 pm at the Public Safety Building, for his services throughout town.

NEW BUSINESS :  Q-3 Treasurer’s Report
Clerk-Treasurer Beeson provided copies of the third quarter treasurer’s report, and spoiled check register.  It was reported that no budget amendments are anticipated between now and the end on the year.  With all departments being frugal, most funds are running well under budget.  Councilmember Milano MOVED to accept the Q-3 Treasurer’s Report.  Councilmember Snook seconded and the motion carried unanimously.


Parks, Cemetery, & Buildings :  Councilmember Milano reported that Palouse Conservation is having a tree planting day.  There are about 50 trees ready to plant to replace the ones that have died or were destroyed by beavers. 

Policy & Administration :  Councilmember Bailey reported that the Planning Commission (PC) met with no quorum.  Title17 – Zoning is getting close to being ready to present.  Attorney Bishop explained that the PC will need to hold a Public Hearing on the changes to Title 17.  They can make changes based on the hearing or send it on to council.  Council may then recommend changes to the PC or have a public hearing before it is adopted as an ordinance.

Streets & Sidewalks Councilmember Bagott will begin working on a snow plowing policy.   Mayor Echanove reported that TIB requests a dedication ceremony for the H St. project.  They will set this up through Commissioner Partch.

Police, Fire, & Safety:   Mayor Echanove explained to council that due to the resignation of Anne Larison to the Civil Service Commission (CSC), he reviewed the original letters of interest and contacted Lynn Youngblood.  Lynn stated he would still accept an appointment to the CSC.  Councilmember Bailey MOVED to reaffirm the Mayor’s appointment of Lynn Youngblood to the Palouse Civil Service Commission.   Councilmember Schorzman seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

MAYOR’S REPORT :    Mayor Echanove reported he attended and gave a presentation at the Washington Brownfields conference.  The Brownfields public meeting was a huge success and MFA continue to formulate strategies.  They are planning to take core samples at the site.

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

From the gallery, Jon Fleischman suggested that we use the reader board and newspapers to remind people to license their dogs for 2010.

Councilmember Bailey reported that Governor Christine Gregoire recommended a 94 million dollar project to the Federal government for funding through the Broadband Stimulus program.  This will run fiber optic telecommunications infrastructure to all the communities in Whitman County where there are Whitman County library branches, as well as other rural areas throughout the state.  This project is a collaboration between NOANET (Northwest Open Access Network), the Port of Whitman, and Whitman County Library.  In addition, the Gates Foundation has pledged to contribute Whitman County Library’s match portion.

Initially, this new infrastructure will serve the Library system but there will be adequate capacity to carry both public and private phone, television, and data.

ADJOURN:   Councilmember Schorzman MOVED to adjourn.  Councilmember Snook  seconded and the motion carried unanimously.  The council meeting adjourned at 7:50 PM.

The following vouchers/warrants are approved for payment:

Claims Paid     Ck# 1775 – 1786        $6,795.97