Regular Council Meeting
September 20, 2021 – 6:00 P.M.
Community Media Center
Mayor Brian Wolken called the meeting to order. Council present were: Dave Goedken, Brenda Hanken, Candy Langerman, Chris Lux and Scott Brighton. Council member Tom Yeoman joined the meeting electronically with Zoom. Also present were City Administrator Russell Farnum, City Clerk Sally Hinrichsen, Library Director Michelle Turnis, Water/ Wastewater Superintendent Jim Tjaden and Police Chief Britt Smith. Park & Rec Director Jacob Oswald arrived during 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, Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous.
Dave Schoon, 17151 County Rd D62 questioned what grants were received by the City related to the former Compadres building at 103 West First Street. He stated that the City decided not to sell the Compadres building to the owner of The Glass Tap, but rather to an group, that a Council member is involved in. He also inquired if this group applied for an LLC. Yeoman advised there is no requirement for an LLC in this transaction. Farnum stated grants were used for asbestos removal, and the roof removal and replacement. The City did receive these grant funds. Farnum stated the next step is the Community Catalyst & Remediation Grant Program’s Building Improvement Grant, which the City match is $50,000 and State share is $100,000. To move forward with this grant, City will need to finalize the development agreement with the Development Partnership. Wolken stated with the Catalyst Grant there are many terms and conditions that need to be met before moving forward with the project and title is transferred.
Lux moved to approve the consent agenda, Brighton seconded, roll call unanimous.
Farnum reviewed the Hazard Mitigation Assistance Grant process including the Notice of Intent, property owner voluntarily signing a buyout agreement, and preparing a proposed budget of cost estimates, which was all submitted. The next step is asking for Council approval to move forward in the grant process and committing to the grant match. Grant deadline has been extended to end of November with another deadline the end of February 2022. Dave Schoon questioned how this benefits the residents of Monticello. Wolken advised is mitigates property in the floodplain, like we did with Oak Street Manufacturing and Julien Printing. Yeoman stated that also included several residences. Hanken questioned if the City has ever displaced residents before in a flood buy-out situation. Hinrichsen stated there was around nine housing properties that were involved in the flood buy-outs along Locust Street and there were three homes in a prior year, which included displacing the tenants. Lux moved to table action on the local match for the Hazard Mitigation Assistance Program related to 2020 North Main Street, Brighton seconded, roll call unanimous. Langerman moved to place the tabled item to take action regarding the local match for the Hazard Mitigation Assistance Program related to 2020 North Main Street Flood Buy-out on the agenda as a work session on October 4, 2021. Lux seconded. Roll call unanimous.
Lux moved to table resolution designating andauthorizing Russell Farnum City Administrator as City Representative to sign all documents related to the Mitigation Project providing funding to assist with the Flood Plain Buyout 202 North Main, Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous.
Farnum reported the Iowa DOT has approved a grant to build an apron and taxiway extension to the south of the current hangars to serve new hangar sites. This project is part of the Capital Improvement Plan for construction in 2022. The cost is estimated to be $80,000, with State grant for 80%, or $64,000, and City match of 20%, or $16,000. Yeoman moved to approve Resolution #2021-106 Authorizing City Administrator to execute Iowa Department of Transportation Agreement for the Fiscal Year 2022 Airport Improvement Program between IDOT and the City of Monticello related to Taxiway and Apron Extension. Lux seconded, roll call unanimous.
Farnum stated Smith has been working with Charlie Becker, 713 North Birch Street, who has proposed an infill sidewalk at his own expense that allows his grandson who lives down the street from him to travel back and forth from their properties in his wheel chair by way of the sidewalk. Becker had communicated his intentions to the adjacent property owners. One property owner refused to allow Becker to install the sidewalk on her property. Smith had concerns regarding City’s liability and the installation of sidewalk approaches that direct pedestrians into the street to bypass a property. Smith stated the City has the authority to require the installation of sidewalk. Gary Schwandt, 711 North Birch stated there is a sidewalk across the street at Polo Plastics that goes up the street and ends nowhere. He didn’t want to see the same thing with this sidewalk. Smith stated the Sidewalk Committee wants to move forward with getting sidewalks to Northridge housing addition and a private property owner has agreed to pay for the sidewalk at no cost to City or the property owners. Schwandt questioned if the property owners would be expected to clear the sidewalks after the City moves snow from the cul-de-sac. Smith stated the City would need to look into other options to remove the snow, like done with other cul-de-sacs in town. Gary Bohlken, 709 North Birch stated they get a lot of snow up there and questioned how they would remove the snow that early in the morning. Council discussed the width of the sidewalk 4’ or 5’, location of where the sidewalk would be installed and ADA compliance. Liz Bartels, 707 North Birch stated if they install the sidewalk 4’ from the right of way, the City will be plowing snow onto the sidewalks. She questioned why Becker didn’t install the sidewalk on his property. Marsha Schwandt stated they just paid for 50% of the cost to install the driveway and now it would be redone again. She felt if they would be exempt from removing the snow, they would be okay with the sidewalks. Bohlken stated he was not opposed to the sidewalk just had concerns on how it would be installed. Wolken directed Smith will contact Becker to get detailed plans for the proposed sidewalk. Brighton moved to table the approval of a plan for sidewalk infill along North Birch Street, Langerman seconded, roll call unanimous.
Jeff Ketels, Commercial Edge Construction updated Council on the progress of the Dollar Fresh and that they look to open after the first of the year, probably in February 2022. They are having some water and sewer connection issues but are working on them. Farnum stated staff has worked with the City Engineer and Developer on the site plan and it complies with all City requirement except the number of parking spaces proposed is less than the City Code requires. Planning and Zoning Board recommends approval of the site plan for Dollar Fresh. Langerman moved to approve Resolution #2021-107 to approve Dollar Fresh Site Plan, Hanken seconded, roll call unanimous.
Oswald reported looking into replacing the signs at Klienow ball field and City received a grant to install the Library’s Storywalk Boards. He is working to rent the post hole digger to do both project at the same time.
Tjaden reported Plumber, Rod Clausser will be tapping the 6 inch water line lived tomorrow for Dollar Fresh.
Turnis reported contractor was working on the Library louvers. She stated Penny Schmidt is attending the Lion’s Club and hoping to get funding for the Storywalk.
Hanken reported on some garbage concerns and Republic picking up extra bags without the City’s tags.
Farnum stated he sent a letter to Matt Pivit, with Republic, regarding some issues and doesn’t believe there has been any issues since the letter was sent.
Farnum updated Council on North Sycamore Street project and continues to work with engineer and contractor. Council discusses extending the warranty of the water lines past the contractor’s 5 years warranty, possibly 15 or 20 if there are any issues with their water lines related to the project. Consensus of the Council was to have Farnum prepare a draft letter and bring to the next Council meeting for their review.
Farnum stated the 7th Street plans are near completion and proposed to bid in November.
Farnum reported Oswald worked all day on Sunday at the Monti In Motion car show and raised $700 for the Austin Strong Inclusive Playground.
Council held a work session to review the issues presented by the Community Building Committee and they toured the Community Auditorium. Consensus of the Council was for Farnum to get some prices for the areas discussed, such as the stage drawer, repair walls where radiators were removed, stairs and patches by the new doors, blinds, and ceiling. Council will review and then decide on how to proceed.
Brighton moved to adjourn at 7:42 PM.
Brian Wolken, Mayor
Sally Hinrichsen, City Clerk