Regular Council Meeting
August 3, 2020 – 6:00 P.M.
Community Media Center
Mayor Brian Wolken called the meeting to order. Council present: Dave Goedken, Brenda Hanken, Gary Feldmann, Candy Langerman, Chris Lux and Tom Yeoman. Also present were City Administrator Doug Herman, City Clerk Sally Hinrichsen, Public Works Director Nick Kahler and Park and Recreation Supt. Shannon Poe. City Engineer AJ Barry joined electronically. Police Chief Britt Smith arrived later in the meeting. The public was invited to attend the meeting in person, with limited seating or to participate in the meeting electronically via “Zoom Meetings” and were encouraged to communicate from Zoom Meeting via chat, due to the heightened public health risks of the Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19). The meeting did have public attendance, both in-person and via Zoom.
Yeoman moved to approve the agenda, adding closed session to discuss a real estate transaction pursuant to Iowa Code Section 21.5(1)(j), Lux seconded, roll call unanimous.
Mayor read proclamation signed by the Governor Reynolds proclaiming August 16-22, 2020 as “Water and Wastewater Workers of Iowa Week”.
Open Forum: Kevin Kurth, 217 W 7th Street addressed issues with his water service line and others on the North Sycamore Project. He felt line should have been replaced not spliced, and backfilled with sand and not rock. He questioned if the City was going to stand behind the work. Goedken stated he called Water/Wastewater Supt. Jim Tjaden to discuss the leak initially and was advised that it was Kurth’s problem. Council questioned engineer if the issue with the 5 or so leaks were the same or different, if we will continue to see issues, should copper line be bedded with sand or rock and if a new line should have been run and not spliced? Barry advised these concerns would need to be looked at on a case by case issue. Kurth felt the contractor should stand behind their work. Bud Coyle, 515 N Sycamore Street stated his and his neighbor Billy Hughes’ lines also leaked and feels a new line should have been put in. Barry will contact Jim Tjaden and Herman to discuss these issues and report back to Council. Britt Smith arrived.
Dave Lumpa, 410 S Linden Street addressed issues with his sewer line, which runs 2½ blocks to Cedar Street where it is connected to the City Main. Herman recalled that Roto-Rooter ran a camera and found a belly in Lumpa’s service line. City staff has jetted the main and found no blockage, in the past.
Yeoman moved to approve the consent agenda, Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous.
Langerman moved to approve Resolution #2020-86 Approving Final Report generated as a result of City of Monticello Goal Setting meeting held on July 20, 2020. Lux seconded, roll call unanimous.
Lux moved to approve Resolution #2020-87 Approving Joan M Topping Tax Abatement Application related to Residential Improvements constructed at 5 Spring Farm Lane, Unit 1, Monticello, Iowa. Goedken seconded, roll call unanimous.
Herman stated the Council authorized removal of trees from the Northridge drainage ditch, from the Northridge retention area to 11th Street. The lower portions of trees /stumps need to be removed and the ditch needs cleaning and shaping, so that it can be permanently maintained and mowed to prevent the overgrowth from growing again. Herman stated four property owners, Derek Manternach, Dionne Prull, Highland Corporation and himself have agreed to give City the necessary easements, but would also need easements from Jann Hughes Turnis and Bud /Georgia Johnson. Proposed easements would allow for storm water flowage and ingress/egress for maintenance and mowing of the ditch. Herman reviewed estimate from B & J Hauling & Excavating to do the ditch work in the amount of $5,912.50. Herman stated once ditch is cleaned out the City staff would maintain and mow the ditch. Kahler stated staff would work with B & J Excavating to remove trees and will do the seeding. Langerman moved to approve Resolution #2020-88 Approving Northridge Retention Detention Ditch Clearing and Shaping, Goedken seconded, roll call unanimous.
Nick Zimmerman, 410 N Sycamore addressed concern on the proposed City Code requiring once a home is sold that the driveway must be paved. Herman stated the Council can set a policy to address the paving of driveway approaches. The new property owner would have 10 years to put in the concrete driveway that they want to use for off street parking, as the proposed code reads now. Industrial areas would be allowed to have gravel surface parking. Zimmerman stated City is allowing sealcoated alleys to go back to gravel but private property owners are going to be required to pave their driveway. When asked Kahler stated there are three alleys that are in really bad shape and were going back to gravel. Gaylen Kray stated that Cedar Rapids doesn’t touch private property /driveways and feels Monticello should leave private property alone also. Goedken felt the proposed code is a complete overreach of the City related to driveways and feels 165.41 7(b) #4 should be removed entirely. Hanken understood that the proposed code was only going to require the approaches to be paved. Kurth didn’t feel City should require the new owner to put in a driveway. Kray asked the Council to remove the 10 year requirement to pave driveways from the proposed City Code. Feldmann didn’t feel City should have control with requiring driveways and felt all driveways should be grandfathered to remain gravel permanently. Herman stated the Council could move the 3rd reading of the proposed code and then move to table at this meeting, then at next meeting vote on the third reading, or will need to start the process over with a hearing. Yeoman moved to approve Ordinance #728 adopting the “Code of Ordinances of the City of Monticello, Iowa, third and final reading and in title only, Goedken moved to table Ordinance #728 adopting the “Code of Ordinances of the City of Monticello, Iowa, third and final reading and in title only and Hanken seconded, roll call unanimous to table. Herman will work with Iowa Codification to update the proposed Code.
Goedken questioned the use of some of the compost site mulch /wood chips for landscaping for the City. He questioned who was doing the City landscaping and if anyone has trimmed or did maintenance to the area inside the Aquatic Center. Poe stated she looked at this with Park Director and she didn’t trust pool staff to run the power tools. Hinrichsen stated needed to watch ages of staff using power tools. Lux felt the mulch could be used for City landscaping and Council needs to advise the City staff that they are expected to maintain the landscaping. Feldmann stated he expected the Park & Recreation Department would be doing the landscaping at the Parks and Aquatic Center, as the Cemetery has a maintenance plan. Poe said there are two staff members in the Park Department and will work together to do the work as directed by the Council.
Herman reviewed email from Engineer Patrick Schwickerath regarding Norm Zimmerman’s proposed sewer line extension from Madalyn Court to Cedar Street and likelihood of damage to homes on Madalyn Court, which could cause leaks. Council questioned if the easements were completed and Herman advised he was working on them.
Herman and Smith discussed purchasing Mircosoft Go tablets and/or IPads for the Council. Smith will bring tablets to next meeting for Council to look at.
Kahler reported Midwest Concrete plans to start on the trail to the Middle School this week and weather permitting pour cement next week.
Kahler stated Steve Monk will work on the intersection of 6th and Gill Streets and plan to be completed before school opens.
Yeoman moved to close the open session to discuss a real estate transaction pursuant to Iowa Code Section 21.5(1)(j). Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous. Yeoman moved to open the open session, Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous. Yeoman moved to direct Herman to proceed as discussed in closed session, Lux seconded, roll call unanimous.
Feldmann moved to adjourn at 9:04 P.M.
Brian Wolken, Mayor
Sally Hinrichsen, City Clerk