The semi-monthly meeting of the City Council of Walcott, Iowa, was held on Monday, the 20th day of May, 2013, at Walcott City Hall. Mayor Couper called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Council members present were: Tim Koehler, John Kostichek, Lisa Mengler, Jackie Puck and Jacob Puck. Absent: None. City employees present: Jeff Blake, John Brockmann, Lisa Rickertsen, Linda Rivers, and Tom Schirman.
Mengler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to approve the agenda. Motion carried.
Mayor Couper welcomed everyone and informed the audience of the rules of order for the meeting.
Consent Agenda. Koehler moved and Kostichek seconded to approve the consent agenda including the invoices and Resolution 2013-16, Transfer of Funds. Roll call ayes: Koehler, Kostichek, Jackie Puck, Jacob Puck, and Mengler. Motion carried.
Audience. Josh Geigle, Wayne Latimer, Treasure Holland, Roger Siebke, Trish Moses, Lon Warnecke, Bernard Brus, David Trees, Marcella Siegel, Loretta Beitel, Carol Snay, Maria Green, Mike Engler, Verlyn and Josie Dietz, Richard Gallens, Perry Gere, Bridget Geigle, and Danielle Blake.
Minutes from 05/06/13. Koehler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to approve the minutes from 05/06/13. Jackie Puck and Mengler abstained due to absence from meeting. Motion carried.
Fire Department. Assistant Chief Josh Geigle presented project worksheets for the purchase of twelve airpack masks and twenty mask storage bags. He reported the Walcott Day Committee has generously donated $3,410, which will cover the total purchases. Mengler moved and Kostichek seconded to approve the purchase of twelve airpack masks at a cost of $2,910 and twenty mask storage bags for $500. Motion carried. Geigle also reported that ten qualified applicants applied for the temporary part-time EMS/Firefighter positions.
Scott County Health Department. Treasure Holland, coordinator of the Community Transformation Grant for Scott County Health Department, presented information on the grant. Holland reported the grant can assist the City with community enhancements while promoting physical fitness and healthy behavior. Jackie Puck moved and Kostichek seconded to move forward with the grant program. Motion carried.
Municipal Building Survey. Mayor Couper read the results of the recent building survey. 239 votes were received with 119 voting in favor of renovating the building at 1113 N Main Street and 120 voting against the renovation. Out of the 120 no votes, 65 voted to pursue other options. Mayor Couper also read the thirty-one comments/letters received regarding the issue. Several comments referenced a new fire station. A lengthy discussion ensued regarding the survey results and future direction of municipal facilities. Koehler stated there was not a clear mandate from citizens regarding the renovation project and therefore he moved and Jackie Puck seconded to end the renovation process and to move forward with Gere-Dismer Architects to assist in pursuing other options. Motion carried.
5-Day Class C Liquor License. Mengler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to approve the 5-Day Class C Liquor License for Walcott Unified Fund at Victory Park. Motion carried.
- Playground Equipment/Fence Extension. Park Board member Danielle Blake reported on the Board's recommendation to move forward with replacing the playground equipment at Wescott Park. The board recommended to purchase and have Midwest Sales Co. install the primary playground equipment, spinner, and hex climber, purchase mulch as a ground cover, and extend the outfield fence near the playground area. The City was awarded a grant from Scott County Regional Commission in the amount of $30,000 and the remaining funds will be paid from the Park Enhancement Fund. The total project cost is estimated to be $42,602. Kostichek moved and Jacob Puck seconded to approve the Park Board's recommendation for the playground equipment. Motion carried. The slide, swings, and merry-go-round, located in the SW corner of the park, will be removed and the board proposes to relocate the swings to another area of the park.
- Merry-Go-Round. Jacob Puck moved and Jackie Puck seconded to proceed with posting a notice and requesting bids on the merry-go-round. Motion carried. The merry-go-round will be advertised for sale in its "as is" condition, without warranties of any kind, after it is available.
- Relocation of Swings. The Park Board proposes to relocate some of the swings to the NE section of Wescott Park. They would like to remove the deteriorating wood equipment and relocate the swings to that area. Koehler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to accept the Park Board's recommendation to relocate the swings as proposed. Motion carried.
Sidewalk Reimbursement Program. Building Official, Linda Rivers, presented the annual list of properties identified with defective sidewalks. Jackie Puck moved and Kostichek seconded to approve the list of residential properties to participate in the 2013 Residential Sidewalk Repair Program (RSRP) for 2013. Motion carried. Notices and program information will be sent to the residential properties as presented. Notices will also be sent to commercial and non owner-occupied properties that do not qualify for the program but have repairs needed to the public sidewalks adjacent to their property. Rickertsen reported that the Resolution establishing the RSRP states that all owner-occupied, single family residential properties with broken or defective sidewalks as defined in Chapter 136 of the Walcott Code of Ordinances are eligible for the program. She reported a resident living in the condo area on E. Parkview Drive questioned about participating in the program. City Hall staff determined the condo area does not qualify and Attorney Schirman agreed the condo association does not fit the eligibility description. Based on legal counsel, Koehler moved and Jacob Puck seconded that the condo association does not qualify for the RSRP. Motion carried.
TIF Rebates. Kostichek moved and Mengler seconded to approve the 2nd half TIF rebates to T&C Storage in the amount of $2,155.25 for three rebates per the Development Agreements. Motion carried.
E. James Street Proposed Sidewalk. Brockmann reported there is 13'6" from the back of the curb to the fence line on the north side of the road. He stated that locating a sidewalk 6' from the curb would not be acceptable as there would be too large of a drop off the edge of the sidewalk. The issue will be discussed with the City Engineer during a special council meeting on Wednesday, May 22, 2013.
Fire Department Subpoena Pay. Rickertsen recommended enacting a policy for paying volunteer fire department members that are required to go to court upon receiving a subpoena for a particular call they responded to. She reported that police officers receive a minimum two hours pay while attending court while not on duty. Following discussion, Mengler moved and Koehler seconded to pay fire department members the same hourly rate of pay as the part-time police officers, minimum of two hours, for attending court on behalf of the Fire Department. Motion carried. The current part-time police hourly rate is $15.99/hour.
Ordinance 463-13, Amending Certain Provisions Pertaining to Building Codes. Rivers reported on adding carbon monoxide detectors as an amendment to the International Property Maintenance Code. Jacob Puck introduced and moved to approve the first reading of Ordinance 463-13. Seconded by Koehler. Roll call ayes: Jacob Puck, Koehler, Mengler, Kostichek, and Jackie Puck. Motion carried.
Police Department Report. Chief Blake reported the officers are required to receive training on the two new tasers since they are a dual shot instead of single shot. He stated the non-operable taser will be kept for replacement parts.
Public Works Department Report. Brockmann expressed his frustration with the recent Fire Department personnel hiring process.
City Clerk's Department Report. Rickertsen presented her report including the following:
- The State of Iowa will receive FEMA disaster funding under the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program as part of Presidential disaster declaration as a result of severe storms, freezing rain, ice and snow that occurred in our State this spring.
- The Mayoral appointment will be made during the regular meeting on Monday, June 3rd. Interested individuals should complete an application form by May 31st.
- Rickertsen reported Mayor Couper was appointed to the City Council exactly eleven years ago, on May 20, 2002, and thanked him for his service to the community.
- City Hall will be closed on Monday, May 27th in observance of Memorial Day.
Mayor's Report. Mayor Couper stated he has enjoyed his years of service on the city council and as Mayor and thanked the staff, council, and community for their support for the past eleven years.
Questions/Concerns. Mengler reported Walcott Day Committee will be cleaning out the building that houses their equipment and questioned the status of the building. Brockmann reported there were renovations made to the building and it will not be torn down.
Koehler moved and Jacob Puck seconded to adjourn at 8:25 p.m. Motion carried. All votes on motions were unanimous, unless noted.