The semi-monthly meeting of the City Council of Walcott, Iowa, was held on Monday, June 5, 2023, at Walcott City Hall. Mayor Pro Tem Jacob Puck called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Other council members present: Everett Bieri, Kirk Koberg, Harry Knutsen, and Lisa Mengler. Staff present: Lisa Rickertsen and Paul Stagg. City Engineer, Jason Holdorf, was also present.
Approval of Agenda. Knutsen moved and Mengler seconded to approve the agenda. Motion carried.
Introduction of Audience/Public Comments. Mickey and Karla Burt, Tim and Andrea Newcomb, Josie Dietz, Tyler and Trisha Brus, Mike Avise, Brent Puck, Kristal Koberg-Schaefer, Jason Shimp, Scott Shimp, and Joe Quick.
Consent Agenda. Koberg moved and Bieri seconded to approve the consent agenda including the invoices, minutes from May 15, 2023, fireworks permit for Iowa 80 Group Truckers Jamboree display on July 13th & 14th, fireworks permit for Walcott Day display at Prairie View Park on July 14th (rain date July 15th), annual cigarette permit renewals for Casey’s General Store, Dolgencorp LLC, Iowa 80 Truckstop, and Pilot Travel Centers #043 and #268, and the May 2023 financial reports. Motion carried.
Community Beautification Awards Presentation. Brent Puck, Hearts and Hands Foundation, reported 2015 was the last year community beautification awards were presented to commercial/industrial property owners. Puck had previously attended a City Council meeting and proposed awards to seven entities for six commercial properties, which council approved. Mayor Pro Tem Jacob Puck presented community beautification awards to the following for recognition of renovation, restoration, and/or landscaping work to local businesses since 2015: Burt Storage (Historical Society Building) – 102 E. Vernon Street; Scott County Library, Walcott Branch – 205 S. Main Street; and S&V Fence and Deck and Chad Brus Construction – 1101 North Main Street. The following businesses were not present but will receive an award: Newell Automotive – 107 E. Walcott Road; JDN Investments – 330 E. Bryant Street; and Walcott Veterinary Clinic – 106 E. Durant Street.
Kristal Koberg-Schaefer – Scott County Library System Updates. Kristal Koberg-Schaefer presented information regarding the Scott County Library System and the Walcott branch. She provided updates on the library branch improvement project, Bookmobile, and the meeting room which is available for rental at the Walcott branch. Residents can become a member of the Scott County Library System and participate in full services, which include access to computers, copiers, and a wide variety of books and DVD rentals. Visit the local library or www.scottcountylibrary.org.
Creation of Recreational Trail Advisory Committee. Rickertsen stated a formal document has been drafted to establish and appoint a Recreational Trail Advisory Committee to research options and pursue funding opportunities for the extension (Phase 2) of the recreational trail. Following discussion, consensus was to place the committee establishment and appointments on the August 7th agenda and direct staff to obtain a cost estimate on engineering services for the design phase. Questions arose on golf cart usage on the recreational trail. The City Code prohibits golf carts, or any motorized/electric vehicle (except ADA-approved assistive devices), in city parks and on the recreational trail. No Motor Vehicle signs are posted at the entrances of the trail. Residents interested in being on the Recreational Trail Advisory Committee should contact City Hall.
Joe Quick – Walcott Unified Fund – Tournament Fencing. Joe Quick reported on the upcoming ISC fastpitch tournament, June 23rd – 25th. Quick requested approval to install temporary fencing at Wescott & Victory Parks from June 21st – June 27th. Following discussion, Mengler moved and Koberg seconded to allow temporary fences be installed at Wescott and Victory Parks from June 21 – June 27, 2023. Motion carried
Lincoln Street Improvements Project. Mengler moved and Bieri seconded to approve payment #9 to Needham Excavating in the amount of $444,403.28, as recommended by the project engineer. Motion carried.
Otis Street Reconstruction Project. Rickertsen reported an agreement (between the City and IMEG) has been drafted by the City’s legal representation and forwarded to IMEG. IMEG representative and City Engineer, Jason Holdorf, presented a map and reported on proposed project details. Discussion was held on setting a completion date in the contract.
Resolution 2023-27, Establishing Hourly Wage for New Deputy City Clerk for the City of Walcott. Rickertsen reported on the recent hiring of a new employee to replace the current Deputy City Clerk who will be retiring in July. Mengler moved and Bieri seconded to approve Resolution 2023-27. Roll call ayes: Mengler, Bieri, Knutsen, Koberg, and Puck. Motion carried.
Resolution 2023-28, Establishing Sewer Improvements Reserve Fund and Authorizing Transfer. Koberg moved and Knutsen seconded to approve Resolution 2023-28. Roll call ayes: Koberg, Knutsen, Bieri, Mengler, and Puck. Motion carried.
Resolution 2023-29, Approving Purchase Offer with Kent and Marilyn Arp – Lot 1 Powers Street Subdivision. Mengler moved and Bieri seconded to approve Resolution 2023-29. Roll call ayes: Mengler, Bieri, Knutsen, Koberg, and Puck. Motion carried.
Ordinance 538-23, Amending Chapter 92 Pertaining to Water Rates. Ordinance 538-23 includes an increase of 4% to both the minimum (base rate) and usage rate, effective with the July 1st billing. Each customer shall pay a minimum bill of $17.65 per month (increase of $.65/month), which includes usage up to 1,400 gallons and all usage over 1,400 gallons shall be $6.05 per 1,000 gallons (increase of $.23/1,000 gallons). Bieri moved and Mengler seconded to approve the third and final reading to adopt Ordinance 538-23. Roll call ayes: Bieri, Mengler, Knutsen, Koberg, and Puck. Motion carried.
Ordinance 539-23, Amending Chapter 106 Pertaining to Solid Waste Collection Fees (Garbage Rate). Ordinance 539-23 is a 4% increase ($.60) to the monthly garbage rate, which is the percentage increase the City pays to the collector per contract effective July 1st. Koberg moved and Knutsen seconded to approve the third and final reading to adopt Ordinance 539-23. Roll call ayes: Koberg, Knutsen, Bieri, Mengler, and Puck. Motion carried.
Public Works Department Report. Stagg reported the Splash Pad had stopped functioning and he is working on repairs. Mengler questioned adding gravel on N. Main Street and questioned if something can be done about the green color of pond. Stagg stated the Public Works staff will be placing gravel along Main Street and the pond water is stagnant and low but he will add water. Koberg questioned why 24-hour concrete mix wasn’t used on the patch at the SW corner of the Main & James Streets intersection. Stagg responded he doesn’t like using the 24-hour mix, especially on main roads, due to lower strength and durability, which the City Engineer concurred with.
City Clerk Report.
- 1st meeting date in July. Following discussion, Mengler moved and Bieri seconded to keep the 1st meeting of July on Monday, July 3rd. Motion carried.
- Renew IT support and network services with Platinum Information Systems. Mengler moved and Bieri seconded to renew the IT and Network services with Platinum Information Systems for three years. Motion carried.
- Renewal of Backup Services with Platinum Smart. Koberg moved and Bieri seconded to approve the services renewal with Platinum Smart for three years. Motion carried.
Council Member Comments. Koberg had questions on extending sanitary sewer, and where current utilities are located, to potential development areas, specifically on E. James Street. Stagg will provide the information to Koberg as requested. Bieri reminded citizens they need to allow space around each individual garbage and recycling cart, and not place them next to parked cars and mailboxes, to provide access for the automated garbage/recycling trucks.
Koberg moved and Puck seconded to adjourn at 7:04 p.m. Motion carried. All votes on motions were unanimous, unless noted.