September 11, 2007

September 11, 2007

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

ROLL CALL:  Council members present were:  Darcie Bagott; Mark Bailey; Mike Milano; Norm Schorzman; Jeff Snook; and Rick Wekenman. Absent was Andy O’Neill.  Also present were: Joyce Beeson, Clerk-Treasurer; Dwayne Griffin, Public Works Superintendent; Ann Thompson, Clerical Assistant; Jerry Neumann, Police Chief; and Heather McGehee.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:   Mark Bailey MOVED to approve the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of August 27, 2007.  Jeff Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

OPEN FORUM : No discussion

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT:  Dwayne Griffin submitted a written report.  Dwayne reported that PW has installed the final water line in on Alder.  Tomorrow they will start on the sewer line.  The city was notified by the Transportation Improvement Board (TIB) that there is funding available for chip/seal work in Palouse.  Dwayne submitted Palouse Cove Road and Church Street.  TIB responded and an overlay will de done in conjunction with area WSDOT projects.  The overlay is 100% funded by TIB.  Dwayne reported that the state missed a couple crosswalks when they painted.  He will call and remind them.

POLICE DEPARTMENT REPORT:  Chief Neumann reported that things are well in the city.  He has been discussing with the school that the PPD will provide the DARE program to the 5th grade curriculum.  It is a weekly program lasting 10 weeks.  He would like to extend it to the K-5th grade.   The PPD has been working in collaboration with the school on morning traffic; trying to control before- and after-school speeders.  Traffic on Alder, Mohr, and Church Streets is horrible due to all the parked cars and congestion.  The streets aren’t wide enough for parked cars and two-way traffic.  Chief Neumann suggested to council that they seriously consider making two of those streets one-way.  We could work with the school and their bus routes.  North and south traffic are not a problem.  The mayor reminded council that residents gave resistance to this idea in the past but encouraged Chief Neumann to continue researching this idea. The mayor asked if there have been any complaints regarding the burn ordinance.  There have not been any.

NEW BUSINESS:   The mayor began 2008 budget discussions for current expense.  We reviewed each department within the general fund line-by-line.  The mayor requested that we continue with our $1500 to the Palouse Basin Aquifer Committee.  Under Law Enforcement expenses, it was discussed that until our 2nd Officer is accepted into the Police Academy he is considered a Professional Reservist and his salary reflects such.  Council member Wekenman recommended we budget for a 25% increase in county criminal justice costs.  Chief Neumann hopes to offset DARE education costs through fundraisers.  Under General Parks expenses, Clerk Beeson suggested that the city compensate Marc Arrasmith $40/month for use of his personal vehicle.  Joyce will discuss it with the auditor.

Miscellaneous budget discussions included:  Will PW need summer help?  If so, we’ll need to budget that in.  Dwayne Griffin will look into it.  PW does not need new equipment.  As far as the shop building, a great deal of work needs to be done.  Council Member Milano said they will begin discussing building needs for Public Works.  Rick Wekenman inquired about health insurance for council members.  Joyce will look into it.  In regards to salaries, 3.2% was built into the salary increases with a few exceptions.  The personnel chair will review.  With the Whitman Street project, the city portion is $35,000 with no added street improvements in 2008.  The only other street project outside Whitman Street will be oiling.  As far as the Breeding’s Addition Sewer Extension, Clerk Beeson looked into a 3-Year Term loan through AWB for 95,000 and Interfund loans for 80,000.  The city won’t be locked into monthly payments and can pay as hook –up fees come in as long as it’s paid off in 3 years.  Joyce is basing these estimations on receiving 12 hook-up the first year and six for each of the next two years.  The bank loan would be the first to be paid, then the interfund loans with Sewer Facility Reserve paid next, then Current Expense, and last CDBG.  By the end of 2011 we’ll know how much money is owed to CDBG.  The city attorney suggested having a 20-year cap to hook up.  People are encouraged to hook up sooner by gradually increasing the hook-up fees.  The sooner they hook up, the less it costs.


Our funding partner for the Palouse River Trailer Park project has experienced delays in proceeding with their final list of projects.  The current delays are internal in nature and should be resolved soon.

Mark Bailey said the community center likes the idea of shifting the building 40’ to the west.  Councilman Bailey MOVED to amend the property lease agreement for the Community Center to the westerly most 40’, pending a letter from the Palouse Community Center Board.  Jeff Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.


PARKS, CEMETERY & BUILDINGS:  Mike Milano is still working on the RV Park planning.  He’s discussing fill work and drainage solutions.  As far as Palouse Days, the street closure has been approved by DOT.  There is a planned flyover for the ping-pong ball drop.  He’s going to get chamber volunteers to help with the barricade removal Saturday afternoon.  The car show is looking good; there are approximately 300 cars and 600 people expected.

PERSONNEL & POOL:  Jeff Snook is amid plans to make the deputy clerk position 80% with pro-rated benefits.  He needs to have current ordinances amended.  Councilman Snook MOVED to develop an ordinance creating the 80% deputy clerk position with pro-rated benefits, effective Jan. 1, 2008.  Councilman Schorzman seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

POLICY & ADMINISTRATION:  Mark Bailey will be attending a composting class on Sep. 25th in Colfax on process and on state funding opportunities.  Whitman County Waste and DOE will be present.  He’s trying to contact Cindi Leper regarding funding for the concrete slab.  The site is currently only ½ the size and it’s already full.  We need ecology blocks.  There is money available.  Mark Bailey and Mike Milano are drafting a proposal for a sidewalk/right-of way use policy.

S TREETS AND SIDEWALKS:  Darcie Bagott spoke with ADA regarding Whitman Street parking.  According to their official “There is no law written that we have to [provide a parking spot], but if we can, we should.”  We will try the west side of the police building and see if that works for the parking spot.  Darcie will document the reasons why we can’t use particular spaces.  Chief Neumann suggested signage instructing people how to contact the police.  He also suggested a 9-1-1 phone box outside the police station.  Darcie will be meeting with engineer Munir Daud regarding the easement with Heidi and Sam Kite for the Community Center Building.


Chief Neumann is attending a law enforcement liability seminar in Moses Lake next month.

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

ADJOURN:  Mike Milano MOVED to adjourn.  Jeff Snook seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. The council meeting adjourned at 9:07 PM

The following vouchers/warrants are approved for payment:

Claims Paid                   Warrants:  #          through #                   Payment:

APPROVED:________________________________   ATTEST:________________________________