Regular Council Meeting
June 15, 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, Police Chief Britt Smith, Director of Park & Recreation Jacob Oswald and Park & Facilities Superintendent Shannon Poe. Library Director Michelle Turnis joined electronically. The public was invited to attend the meeting in person, with limited seating or 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 on Zoom Meeting.
Yeoman moved to approve the agenda, adding discussion on the Sixth Street ditch. Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous.
Stuart Gerdes, 615 North Sycamore, inquired what decision was made regarding trees along North Sycamore where the trees were removed for construction and if they will be able to plant trees in the right of way. Herman stated the Tree Board is working on this but was delayed due to COVID- 19 pandemic. Gerdes stated there are issues with the North Sycamore Street seeding and the landscaping is terrible. Wolken recommended the new seeding be sprayed with a weed killer made for new seeding.
Bud Coyle, 515 North Sycamore, addressed issues with the area by Sixth Street that did not get seeded and concerns on the sidewalk getting fixed by contractor. Herman stated the sidewalk was not installed according to the specs and the contractor is to re-do the sidewalk. Goedken stated the street was raised in front of Coyle’s home and feels the elevated street in causing the problems with water drainage. Barry stated they added an intake, which was installed 6 inches higher than the plans called for and the sidewalk was installed 6 to 8 inches higher than the plans called for. During the walk-thru, Horsfield agreed to fix the intake and sidewalk. Barry stated the intake and sidewalk ramp were designed with the elevation of the street in mind.
Yeoman moved to approve the consent agenda, with the removal for the Council minutes,
Goedken seconded, roll call unanimous.
Goedken stated he did not remember the storage building being discussed. After discussion, Goedken moved to approve the June 1, 2020 minutes with the following sentence being removed: “Council directed Kahler to put together some options and costs for their review”. Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous.
Hanken moved to approve Resolution #2020-70 Directing the City Clerk to Publish Notice of a Public Hearing on the adoption of the proposed City of Monticello Code of Ordinances, Lux seconded, roll call unanimous. Hearing will be held on July 6, 2020 at 6 PM.
Yeoman moved to approve Resolution #2020-71 Approving Pam McCarthy Tax Abatement Application related to Residential Improvements constructed at 511 Locust Ct., Monticello, Iowa, Lux seconded, roll call unanimous.
Lux moved to approve Resolution #2020-72 Authorizing the City Clerk to make the Appropriate Transfers of Sums and Record the Same in the Appropriate Manner for FY 2020 for the City of Monticello, Goedken seconded, roll call unanimous.
Herman reported City purchased airport hangars from Monticello Aviation, who paid taxes in the amount of $1,746 to cover taxes due until February, 29, 2020 to the City. Goedken moved to approve Resolution #2020-73 to request Abatement of accrued Property Taxes on property owned by the City of Monticello for public purposes within the City limits of the City of Monticello, Feldmann seconded, roll call unanimous.
Herman stated the owner of Northside Bar requested the premise update be removed from the agenda. Yeoman moved to table action related to the approval of premise update adding Northside Bar basement to the license, as previously request of the owner, Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous.
Herman reported the Royal Flush Development Agreement has an error in the dates listed for the rebates, which skipped FY 2021-2022 and proposed resolution corrects the error. Langerman moved to approve Resolution #2020-74 Approving correction of typographical error in Royal Flush Development Agreement, Lux seconded, roll call unanimous.
Herman reported the Park Department has a 2000 Ford Ranger and 2006 GMC Canyon pickup and the Airport has the old police Explorer. The Police Department could sell the Airport the 2015 Interceptor for $5,000 and could transfer or sell the Park Department the 2011 Silverado pickup for $10,000. If the pickup is transferred to the Parks Department, it would continue to be made available to the PD for placement of barriers and use for traffic needs. Langerman moved to approve Resolution #2020-75 Authorizing the sale/transfer of the two Police Department vehicles to two other City Departments and to purchase one replacement vehicle, Yeoman seconded, roll call unanimous.
Council discussed proposed wages for employees not covered by the Collective Bargaining excluding the police department staff, as recommended by the Compensation Committee. Tjaden asked the Council to consider a raise of $3,000 a year, for the next five years to get his wages comparable to other Grade 3 Wastewater Operators. Other proposed increases are: Smith to receive a 2.5% increase plus $5,000 increase tied to ambulance duties; Lori Lynch, Lead Paramedic to receive $.55 under the current Collective Bargaining Agreement and an additional $1.00 per hour for a total of $1.55 per hour; Hinrichsen to receive 2.5% increase; Kahler to receive 3% increase; Oswald to receive $5,000 (7.7%) a year increase; Poe to receive 3% increase and Herman to receive a 2% increase. Goedken moved to Resolution #2020-76 Approving FY ’21 Wages for Non-Bargaining Staff, including the change for Jim Tjaden’s increase to reflect $3,000 per year for the next five years. Hanken seconded, roll call unanimous.
Council reviewed the proposed increases for the Police Officers and Secretary, as recommended by the Compensation Committee, which is a 3% pay increase for the next three years, elimination of the education incentive and shift differential pay, and adding longevity pay based on years of service. Goedken moved to approve Resolution #2020-77 Approving Employment Agreement with Monticello Police Department Officers and Staff, Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous.
Council decided to hold a goal setting session and possible tour of town to look at various streets following the July 20th Council meeting.
Herman reported two residents contacted him and offered to be on a sidewalk review committee. Their desire is to look at Monticello as a whole and determine what is needed to make Monticello a walkable community.
Herman requested a bid from Heiar Fencing to fence in the Berndes Center’s HVAC air exchanger and compressors and will report back to Council.
Herman reported that he filed the Wellmark grant for Fountain Park improvements.
Herman advised that he has received two bids for the North Sycamore Street painting. The angle parking near McNeil Hardware, Theisens and Sacred Heart on Sycamore Street will be 10’ and the angle parking on Third Street will remain 9’ stalls. The low bid of $1,500 was from L.L. Pelling.
Herman stated he has plans for Sycamore Street and First Street intersection to make the walks ADA compliant.
Herman reported Keith Hagen would like to build a home at the end of East First Street, west of the wastewater treatment plant road. This area is outside of the treatment plant upgrade scope. City will need to decide whether to extend water and sewer mains to this property or have developer install service lines.
Herman stated the treatment plant upgrades are being designed as large as it can be as a Grade 3 plant to provide additional treatment processing as the town grows and develops.
Goedken voiced his concerns related to the Sixth Street ditch, which was full by Hwy 38 and only knee deep by Bud Coyle’s property after the heavy rainfall. He stated there are trees and concrete blocking the flow of the water in the ditch and the box culvert under Hwy 38 is half full of silt cause by obstructions east of Hwy 38. Herman reported easements are drawn-up, however, property owners disagree with having to pay for improvements to the ditch. Herman is working on a USDA water quality grant to help cover the costs and possibly reduce the easements. Goedken inquired on the timeline and stated that it would add value to the property currently being destroyed without improvements. Wolken agreed the trees and debris is making a pinch point in the ditch. Bud Coyle stated there was never a problem with the ditch until the concrete was put in and feels taxpayers should not have to pay to remove it. Herman stated area of the ditch by Scott Chally’s property is also a concern. Herman will update Council on status at the next meeting.
Kahler stated last year when they hired the sealcoating done, it was his intent to hire all sealcoating done as the City equipment is outdated. He stated there are 38 sealcoated streets in Monticello. Kahler stated the Council was given a quote from LL Pelling in the Spring of this year in the amount of $58,756.90 for several streets to be sealcoated and no decision was made on which streets to do. They have moved their equipment to another area, so Kahler will have to see if they will be able to do any sealcoating this year.
Oswald and Poe reviewed the CDC, American Red Cross and the Iowa Department of Health requirements and recommendation to open the swimming pool. They met with the Park Board to review the proposed bullet points needed to open the pool. Poe stated to get all cleaning supplies, PPE supplies and to do the staff training will take a few weeks, but hoping to open June 29th. Lux recommended not having concessions. Yeoman stated at the Park Board meeting they decided to sell only pre-packaged concessions and will be using a punch card. Poe estimated approximately 100 to 150 patrons would be allowed in the pool at one time. They will be selling pre-paid pool passes only. Park Board recommended a soft opening to work through issues. Yeoman moved to approve Park Board recommendation to open the swimming pool following the Park Board recommendations and guidelines, as stated in the June 15, 2020 letter from Shannon Poe to the Council, with a target opening date of June 29th, Hanken seconded, roll call unanimous.
Oswald reported there was an incident at the Youth Tournament, which involved alcohol, this past weekend. Oswald recommended the alcohol not be allowed at any scheduled youth activities or events, but to allow alcohol at the adult activities.
Council discussed increasing the Mayor and Council pay to increase the candidate pool for the offices. Hinrichsen stated the increase would not go into effect until January 1st of the next term of office, following the election in November 2021.
Herman handed out the Library Board’s recommendation to open the Library to the public.
Feldmann moved to adjourn at 8:46 P.M.
Brian Wolken, Mayor
Sally Hinrichsen, City Clerk