The semi-monthly meeting of the City Council of Walcott, Iowa, was held on Monday, the 16th day of June, 2014, at Walcott City Hall. Mayor John Kostichek called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Council members present were: Tim Koehler, Virgil Wayne Latimer, Lisa Mengler, Jackie Puck, and Jacob Puck. Absent: None. City employees present: Jeff Blake, John Brockmann, Lisa Rickertsen, and Tom Schirman.
Mengler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to approve the agenda with the deletions of item 7, Bob Fox : W. Bryant Street Project tree removal, and item 15, Wastewater 3 Operator position. Motion carried. Fox called and reported he was unable to attend and item 15 will be placed on a future agenda.
Consent Agenda. Koehler moved and Latimer seconded to approve the consent agenda including the invoices, minutes from June 2, 2014, May 2014 financial reports, and cigarette permit renewals for Lampliter, Casey's, Weisrock, Inc., Pilot Travel Centers #043 & #268, and Iowa 80 Truckstop, and the May 2013 financial reports. Motion carried.
Audience. Tom and Kayla Sweeney, Christina McDonough, Brent Arp, Donna Housley, William Belz, and Kevin Flack.
Christina McDonough, Scott County Health Department. McDonough was present and discussed the Iowa Community Transformation C.H.A.N.G.E. Tool Assessment Summarization for Walcott. She reviewed the policy and environmental recommendations for the following modules: physical activity, nutrition, tobacco use, chronic disease management, and leadership. She reported the Iowa Community Transformation program would provide paint for mile markers at the recreational trail and pay for handicap mats at the new crossing by the school. Council had no questions and Mayor Kostichek thanked McDonough for attending.
William Belz : Request Permission to Allow Pit Bull at Residence. Prior to the meeting, William Belz provided additional information to the Council regarding his request to either completely reverse the current pit bull ban or to change the Dangerous Animals Ordinance to allow pit bulls with restrictions. Staff also provided information regarding pit bull attacks and fatality statistics. A list of pit bull attack fatalities in 2013 was also provided, which included a child in Iowa. Mengler stated she appreciated his research and his personal interest in keeping his dog however, she can't ignore pit bull's genetic history and their tendency to attack. She stated that protecting the citizens of Walcott should take precedence over animal ownership rights. Donna Housley spoke in favor of keeping the current breed-specific legislation. Jackie Puck stated she had received phone calls from residents that do not want to change the current pit bull ban ordinance. Mayor Kostichek stated he would not be in favor of repealing the ban due to safety concerns of residents and visitors. Kevin Flack, who was previously forced to remove his pit bull from Walcott, questioned if pit bulls could be allowed with restrictions. City Insurance Agent, Brent Arp, reported the three major companies he writes insurance policies for prohibit insuring homeowners that own pit bulls. The companies have a list of ineligible risks which include a list of breeds that are not insurable. Arp stated he not only would support keeping the ban but would consider expanding the ban to include other breeds. Koehler recommended establishing a committee, including local veterinarians and City insurance agent, to review the Dangerous Animals Ordinance. Mayor Kostichek stated he will contact individuals and bring a proposed committee list to the next regular meeting. The current ban still stands and pit bulls are not allowed in Walcott.
Spruce Tree Donation at Prairie View Park. Brent Arp stated he would like to donate a Northern Spruce to be planted near the gazebo at Prairie View Park. The Park Board recommended approval of the donation during their May 7th meeting. It was discussed that the Prairie View Park Landscaping Plan does not include a tree in the specific area as requested. Arp stated he needs it near the gazebo as he intends to put lights on the tree during the winter, therefore needing access to electricity which is available at the gazebo. Mengler moved to have Brockmann and Arp look at the area and following mutual agreement of tree placement, bring back to the Council for approval. Following further discussion, Mengler rescinded her motion and Jackie Puck moved and Mengler seconded to approve the Northern Spruce donation, contingent upon Brockmann and Arp meeting and agreeing on tree placement. Motion carried. Mayor Kostichek thanked Arp for his donation.
Fire Department Report. Chief Geigle presented a project worksheet to replace hose that didn't pass hose testing. Mengler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to purchase the hose from Sandry Fire at a cost of $1,776. Motion carried. Geigle stated they would cut down the old hose and use it for training purposes.
Sidewalk Repair Program. Discussion was held on a sidewalk on N. Henry Street. Brockmann stated this sidewalk has been tilted for many years, mainly caused by semi and heavy equipment traffic from the property to the west. Brockmann will meet with Paustian Concrete to determine possible solutions and costs and bring information to the next meeting.
Ordinance 473-14, Amending the Official Zoning Map. Koehler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to approve the second reading of Ordinance 474-14. Roll call ayes: Koehler, Jacob Puck, Jackie Puck, Latimer, and Mengler. Motion carried. This ordinance amends the zoning on a portion of property located at 440 E. Memorial Road from R-1, Single Family Dwelling District, to SA, Suburban Agricultural District.
Ordinance 474-14, Amending Chapter 167, Pertaining to Accessory Buildings. Jackie Puck moved and Latimer seconded to approve the second reading of Ordinance 474-14. Roll call ayes: Jackie Puck, Latimer, Mengler, Koehler, and Jacob Puck. Motion carried. This ordinance clarifies the following:
- All garages must be accessed by a paved driveway (R-1 & R-2 Zoning Districts)
- Car ports shall be considered as a private garage and shall be attached to the primary structure or a detached garage and included in the total square footage. (R-1 & R-2 Zoning Districts)
- Larger accessory buildings allowed on 20,000 square feet lots can be utilized as garages.
Resolution 2014-23, Authorizing Internal Advance of Funds for Main Street Enhancement Project. Mengler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to approve Resolution 2014-23. Roll call ayes: Jackie Puck, Latimer, Mengler, Koehler, and Jacob Puck. Motion carried.
Resolution 2014-24, Transfer of Funds. Rickertsen reported on the proposed year-end transfers. Mengler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to approve Resolution 2014-24. Roll call ayes: Mengler, Jacob Puck, Jackie Puck, Jacob Puck, Latimer, and Koehler. Motion carried.
Police Department Report. Chief Blake presented the May call reports and reported on the status of part-time officers.
Public Work's Report. Brockmann reported the W. Bryant Street project included removal of a few power poles but the electrical company, Alliant Energy, decided instead to rebuild the entire line in the area. This caused additional tree trimming and removal of trees located both on city right-of-way and private property. Attorney Schirman updated the City Council on the status of obtaining permission from Hawkeye Land Company, owner of the railroad right-of-way, for a pipeline crossing.
City Clerk's Report. Rickertsen distributed the May Building Department report from the Building Official.
Mayor's Report. He thanked the citizens in attendance and also thanked the volunteers and Public Works Department employees on the clean-up and plantings at Welcome Park.
Questions/Concerns. Donna Housley stated there has been broken glass on the recreational trail. Chief Blake stated he would review the cameras from the trail area.
Mengler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to adjourn at 7:32 p.m. Motion carried. All votes on motions were unanimous, unless noted.