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Council Meeting Minutes 6-19-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

June 19, 2017

     The City Council of the city of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, June 19, 2017 at 7:30pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Kragnes, Larson, Nefzger, Tucker and Wulfekuhle.

     Moved Tucker, seconded Kragnes, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 6/5/17, claims list of 6/6/17 – 6/19/17, the May 2017 Treasurer’s/Clerk’s Report & Budget Report, and the renewal of a liquor license for The Pumper. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Treasurer's Balance for Fund Accounts as of May 31, 2017: General $297,795.71; Streets $211,224.16; Debt Service $5,166.74; Water Utility $351,312.64; Water T&A $27,780.07; Sewer Utility $307,830.75; Landfill/Recycling $1,893.66; Yard Waste $11,702.71; Bolger Fund $189,643.71; TIF $57,086.98; Local Option Tax $86,517.82; Storm Water $10,863.87; Downtown Project ($29,715.04); Franchise Fees $48,920.48. May Receipts by Fund: General $37,199.79; Streets $11,565.08; Debt Service $634.60; Water Utility $4,654.14; Water T&A $2,496.96; Sewer Utility $5,171.24; LF/Recycling $1,023.13; Yard Waste $196.07; Bolger $2,957; TIF $252.06; Local Option $6,915.67; Storm Water $146; Franchise Fees $3,425.92. Total Receipts $76,637.66. May Disbursements by Fund: General $28,993.44; Streets $14,450.76; Water Utility $11,033.54; Water T&A $507.53; Sewer Utility $8,094.85; Yard Waste $5,478.99. Total Disbursements: $68,559.11. Investments: $1,309,664.03. Bank Balance $2,863,137.26. Balance with Library Funds $2,952,849.14.

     Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Kragnes, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Mayor Wenthe advised the council that Jeff Butikofer resigned from the Library Board due to a conflict of interest regarding a potential candidate for the Library Director position. The City Council needs to consider a replacement. Annette Butikofer was offered and accepted the Library Director position. On June 15th, the Mayor spent the day with Zach Mannheimer meeting with different groups and individuals and touring the town as part of the Creative Placemaking Economic Assessment study. Wenthe would like to encourage all the citizens to shop local and support the businesses that we do have as that is the first step to seeing improvements in the community and with economic development. Fayette has a lot of things that we should be proud of and we should help promote these things.

     Administrator/Clerk McGrane reported to the council that he attended a NEIA League meeting on June 6th, a housing meeting on June 12th, had an annual visit with Black Hills Energy personnel on June 13th and attended the Steering committee meeting on June 15th.

     Police Chief Pisanti informed the council that he attended a training to prevent violence against women last week. The cost was covered by a grant and UIU. The department is wrapping up on the unpaid, over-due tickets project. Out of 61 unpaid tickets, only 19 are left unpaid and letters have been sent out to address the last 19 tickets. The department started a code enforcement or nuisance abatement sweep around town this week. The sweep will address issues such as abandoned vehicles, trash piles and tall grass. They will also inform residents on the importance of displaying their house numbers so they are visible from the road.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to discuss the Fayette Community Library Board minutes from May 10, 2017. Annette Butikofer accepted the Library Director position and will start on approximately August 1st. Linda Adams will retire the end of September. After a brief discussion, the council was wondering if the Library Board had an idea of when they would hire an assistant librarian. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to introduce Alex Soderquist, the General Manager at Hawkeye Telephone Company (HTC), to discuss running fiber optic lines through Fayette. HTC runs fiber optic lines all over Fayette County and NE Iowa. It was proposed to them by Community Digital Wireless (CDW) to run fiber optic lines to a cell tower just north of the city of Fayette so CDW can provide fixed, wireless internet service to the city of Fayette residents, hopefully within the next year. Fixed, wireless internet is where an antenna is placed on top of a cell tower and a resident puts an antenna on top of their home or business to receive internet connection. The internet service is reasonably fast and is usually less expensive than other services. HTC currently has fiber optic service at the cell tower just south of Fayette. The current preliminary plan is to run the fiber optic lines from the tower south of Fayette, along Klock Rd/Washington St into town, run a line to UIU so they can take advantage of the service, head west along W 7th St, then north through town, behind the downtown district, over to city hall, police dept, fire dept and ambulance garage, then north to the cell tower. Soderquist is also hoping to include in the plan to run a line to the NFV school and Fayette Community Library. When they build the fiber optic line, they do not have the ability to provide a service line to every business, but they do prepare for future options and investments for other companies that may want to come in and take advantage of the fiber optic line. Since HTC is a small company with a small staff, they are unable to provide fiber optic services to multiple customers throughout NE Iowa, but they like the idea of spearing new interventions into towns where services are not available. Currently there are no plans for offering fiber optic service to residents, however, the cities infrastructure can still take advantage of fiber optic service. HTC is currently working with other providers and companies to try and have them come up to the NE Iowa area to provide the fiber optic service. Soderquist wanted to introduce himself and let the council know they are currently in the middle of preliminary planning to do this type of work. The cities advantage would be to have fiber optic run to places they felt would be useful. HTC just finished getting West Union city hall connected to fiber optic. HTC tries to provide a discounted rate at a fixed cost for cities who use the service. As an example, HTC charges the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office and West Union city hall a fixed rate of $70 per month. HTC typically offers a full 1GB service, that is 1,000MB up and 1,000MB down, unlimited usage, HTC provides support via IT networking capabilities. They are also hoping this would help bring in future business opportunities and are hoping to have the fiber optic line in the ground before the end of October. Their work and construction is done by a local contractor, West Union Trenching. They would trench and lay the fiber optic lines in the cities right-of-way through town. When Soderquist has completed his plan, he will come back with specific details as well as options for the city to take advantage of the service.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to introduce the third and final reading of Ordinance 493 – Amending the code of ordinances of the city of Fayette, Iowa, by repealing and amending sections 92.02 of water rates and 99.02 of sewer service charges under chapters 92 and 99. The ordinance increases water and sewer rates by 2% on all rate levels to keep up with inflation, continue with improvements, replacing water and sewer lines, and replacing water meters. The minimum sewer charge will increase from $59.09 to $60.28 per quarter. The minimum water charge will increase from $38.01 to $38.77. The rate increase will begin on September 1, 2017, which is billable in December 2017. All the water and sewer rates shall automatically increase 2% per year on June 1 unless changed by resolution of council. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the third and final reading of Ordinance 493. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to introduce the third and final reading of Ordinance 494 – Amending the code of ordinances of the city of Fayette, Iowa, by repealing and amending section 106.09 of landfill fee under chapter 106. The ordinance increases the landfill fee by $0.25 per quarter. The increase is due to Fayette County increasing the landfill cost by $1.00 per person, per year starting in July 2017. The rate increase will begin on July 1, 2017, which is billable in September 2017. Moved Tucker, seconded Kragnes, to approve the third and final reading of Ordinance 494. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Wulfekuhle, to discuss and review Ordinance 484 – Rental Housing Code. After discussion, Kragnes suggested inviting the community and landlords to a special meeting to discuss the new updates to the draft code that City Attorney Pat Dillon suggested. The council agreed to hold a meeting on July 17th at 6:30PM, an hour before the city council meeting.

     There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 8:53pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 6-5-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

June 5, 2017

     The City Council of the City of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, June 5, 2017 at 7:30pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Kragnes, Larson, Nefzger and Tucker. Absent – Wulfekuhle.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 5/15/17 and the claims list of 5/16/17 – 6/5/17. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes, carried.

     Mayor Wenthe informed the council that Upper Iowa University hired Superlandscapes to repair the wooden bridge on the rec trail between Fayette and the Volga River Recreation Area. They had finished repairing it before Memorial Day weekend. UIU will take care of the bill. Zach Mannheimer will be back in Fayette on June 15 to meet with more people and local groups as he continues the Creative Assessment for Fayette. The Fayette Fire Department will be touring UIU with some of the UIU facility staff this week so the department can be more prepared for any fire-related emergencies.

     City Administrator/Clerk McGrane advised the council that Lance Butikofer, NFV student, met with Public Works Director Jerry Hildebrand and they installed the Little Library at the Open Air Market on June 2. Data Technologies installed the new accounting & payroll software and did on-site training with McGrane and Deputy Clerk Sellers on May 16, 17 and 18. Ray’s Excavating started the 2017 Water System Improvements project on Madison & Jones Streets on May 17. The look-out tower that UIU paid for is completed along the rec trail.

     Police Chief Pisanti informed the council the department will be attending a training at UIU this week on critical incidents. Mayor Wenthe praised Chief Pisanti for handling a recent emergency at UIU with a student. Wenthe advised he heard many positive comments about the way the incident was handled and the positive outcome.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss American Tower Corp. conditional offers on the land lease for the cell tower. The city attorney recommended the city not negotiate at this time since there are still quite a few years left on the lease. After a brief discussion, the council agreed to not accept an offer at this time.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson to discuss the Fayette Rec Board minutes from May 25, 2017. Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson to approve the minutes. All ayes, carried.

     No motion to discuss bringing fiber-optic services into Fayette for businesses with Alex Soderquist, Hawkeye Telephone Company, as he was not present.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to consider purchasing three replacement police radios. Chief Pisanti told the council during a recent emergency call, one of the police handheld portable radios malfunctioned. He has used the radio that failed for about a year and half. The new handheld radios cost $310 each from Fayette Electronics. The department currently has 3 handheld radios that they rely on, so the new radios would replace these. Moved Tucker, seconded Kragnes, to purchase 3 police handheld radios for a total of $930. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to consider purchasing a snow blower and rotary broom for the John Deere, as budgeted for FY2017. John Deere in Oelwein quoted a total of $4,675 and John Deere in Sumner quoted a total of $4,187.29 for both items. Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to purchase the snow blower and rotary broom from John Deere in Sumner for a total cost of $4187.29. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to consider contract change order number 1 from Ray’s Excavating LLC for work completed on the 2017 Water System Improvements project on Madison and Jones Streets. The order included an increase in cost of $34.00 for increasing the culvert. Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, to approve change order number 1. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to introduce the second reading of Ordinance 493 – Amending the code of ordinances of the city of Fayette, Iowa, by repealing and amending sections 92.02 of water rates and 99.02 of sewer service charges under chapters 92 and 99. The ordinance increases water and sewer rates by 2% on all rate levels to keep up with inflation, continue with improvements, replacing water and sewer lines, and replacing water meters. The minimum sewer charge will increase from $59.09 to $60.28 per quarter. The minimum water charge will increase from $38.01 to $38.77. The rate increase will begin on September 1, 2017, which is billable in December 2017. All the water and sewer rates shall automatically increase 2% per year on June 1 unless changed by resolution of council. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the second reading of Ordinance 493. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Tucker, seconded Kragnes, to introduce the second reading of Ordinance 494 – Amending the code of ordinances of the city of Fayette, Iowa, by repealing and amending section 106.09 of landfill fee under chapter 106. The ordinance increases the landfill fee by $0.25 per quarter. The increase is due to Fayette County increasing the landfill cost by $1.00 per person, per year starting in July 2017. The rate increase will begin on July 1, 2017, which is billable in September 2017. After discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the second reading of Ordinance 494. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to introduce the first reading of Ordinance 495 – Amending the code of ordinances of the city of Fayette, Iowa, by adding regulations for a grass, weeds, vines and brush code as chapter 52. After receiving many complaints about multiple over-grown lawns throughout town, Chief Pisanti and Administrator McGrane felt a specific chapter to help enforce the issue was needed. The city attorney reviewed and supported the new chapter. The ordinance requires owners to cut their grass, weeds, vines and brush when it exceeds approximately eight inches in height or which are obnoxious or unsightly. For the first violation in each calendar year, the property owner shall be notified and will have five days to correct the condition. If the property owner fails to maintain the property after notice, the work will be done by city employees or by a contractor and billed to the property owner. For subsequent violations on the same property in the same calendar year, a written notice will not be sent to the owner. The work will be done by city employees or by a contractor and again billed to the property owner. Failure to pay shall result in the cost being assessed against the property for collection in the same manner as a property tax. After discussion, moved Nefzger, seconded Larson, to waive the second and third readings of Ordinance 495. All ayes, carried. Moved Tucker, seconded Larson, to approve the first and final reading and adopt Ordinance 495. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to introduce the first reading of Ordinance 496 – Amending the code of ordinances of the city of Fayette, Iowa, by repealing and amending section 50.02 (10) of nuisance abatement procedure under Chapter 50. The ordinance modifies weeds, brush to read: Dense growth of all weeds, vines, brush, grass, other botanical growth or other similar vegetation in the City which constitutes a health, safety or fire hazard or which are obnoxious or unsightly. It also refers to Chapter 52, the new grass, weeds, vines and brush code. After discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Larson to waive the second and third readings of Ordinance 496. All ayes, carried. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the first and final reading and adopt Ordinance 496. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to introduce Resolution 2017-13. After a brief discussion, moved Tucker, seconded Kragnes, to approve and adopt Resolution 2017-13: A resolution considering grass and weeds longer than 8 inches in height and debris to be a nuisance and obnoxious to the public. It also establishes the following rate for city actions taken to abate nuisances: $250 for mowing, per lot, plus $50 per hour for each hour over the first hour spent on mowing and cleaning of the property, and cleaning of debris shall be assessed at a rate of $100 per hour. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to discuss the City of Fayette’s position with fireworks. After discussion, the council decided to stay with our current policy at this time.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to consider a written RFP to engage a CPA firm to perform the City’s required annual examination for the year ending June 30, 2017. After discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to write and release an RFP to engage a CPA firm to perform the City’s required annual examination. All ayes, carried.

     There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 8:29pm. 

Council Meeting Minutes 5-15-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

May 15, 2017

     The City Council of the city of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, May 15, 2017 at 8:03pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Kragnes, Larson, Tucker and Wulfekuhle. Absent – Nefzger.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 5/1/17, claims list of 5/2/17 – 5/15/17, the April 2017 Treasurer’s/Clerk’s Report & Budget Report, and the renewal of a liquor license for Aramark/Upper Iowa University. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Treasurer's Balance for Fund Accounts as of April 30, 2017: General $289,589.36; Streets $214,109.84; Debt Service $4,532.14; Water Utility $357,692.04; Water T&A $25,790.64; Sewer Utility $310,754.36; Landfill/Recycling $870.53; Yard Waste $16,985.63; Bolger Fund $186,686.71; TIF $56,834.92; Local Option Tax $79,602.15; Storm Water $10,717.87; Downtown Project ($29,715.04); Franchise Fees $45,494.56. April Receipts by Fund: General $110,995.25; Streets $9,643.69; Debt Service $2,730.36; Water Utility $42,933.22; Water T&A $625; Sewer Utility $66,830.16; LF/Recycling $14,111.61; Yard Waste $2,719; Bolger $1,120; TIF $14,028.10; Local Option $6,915.65; Storm Water $1,500.21; Franchise Fees $1,649.69. Total Receipts $275,801.94. April Disbursements by Fund: General $30,541.28; Streets $8,583.83; Water Utility $6,928.43; Water T&A $225; Sewer Utility $16,111.65; LF/Recycling $14,957.71; Yard Waste $226.57; Downtown Project $729.05. Total Disbursements: $78,303.52. Investments: $1,285,593.66. Bank Balance $2,855,058.71. Balance with Library Funds $2,946,462.68.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Administrator/Clerk McGrane reported to the council that he has continued to work with Data Technologies preparing for the installation of the new accounting & payroll software. The installation & training will take place on May 16, 17 & 18 at Fayette City Hall. Kluesner Construction filled cracks in the streets around town on May 8th. Ray’s Excavating is scheduled to start the 2017 Water System Improvement project on Madison & Jones Streets on May 17th. Fayette’s spring clean-up day is scheduled for May 24. People can visit www.fayetteiowa.com or call City Hall for more information or to notify the clerk of items they would like picked up. Fayette City Hall will be closed on Monday, May 29 for Memorial Day.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to discuss Resolution 2017-11. After a brief discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve Resolution 2017-11: A resolution of appointment and compensation schedule to Patrick B. Dillon of Dillon Law, PC, for City Attorney of Fayette, Iowa. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Larson, seconded Wulfekuhle, to discuss the American Tower Corporation conditional offers on tower. After discussion, the council would like to present the offers to our city attorney to review and try to find out what other communities in a similar situation are doing.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to discuss repairing the wooden bridge on the recreational trail. The city did not receive any other bids for the project. Mayor Wenthe informed the council that currently Upper Iowa University owns this portion of the trail because it is outside the city limits. When the trail is completed, the Fayette County Conservation will take over the ownership. The trail is not considered completed until the last portion between Jade Road and the Volga Recreation Area is paved. UIU and the city of Fayette worked on the trail project together. UIU was recipient of the funds and the grant. UIU helped with a portion of the matching funds and the city of Fayette received a REAP grant to use for some of the matching funds. UIU received another grant to put up a look-out tower along the trail and covered the matching funds. It is not the cities obligation to repair the bridge, but it could be something the city of Fayette chooses to help with.   After further discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to table.

     Moved Tucker, seconded Kragnes, to discuss the Fayette Community Library Board minutes from April 12, 2017. The council asked where the library advertised for the open Library Director position. McGrane advised the position was posted at the library, city hall, the bank and the post office and could not remember if the library advertised anywhere else, but he could find out. The council would like to find out all the places where it was advertised and if it was not published in any of the local newspapers, to ask the Library Board to consider advertising it in a local newspaper or two and maybe some websites. Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to discuss Laura Albert’s with Helping Services request in adopting Resolution 2017-12. Laura was unable to make the meeting, but had provided information to the council and spoke to Amy Tucker earlier about the Resolution. The resolution is to encourage people to not use tobacco products at city parks and on trails. Violators would be asked to refrain from using tobacco or leave the grounds when using tobacco and there would be no fine. Helping Services would provide the city signs to place in parks and along the trails. After discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to approve Resolution 2017-12: A resolution establishing a tobacco-free parks and trails policy for the city of Fayette, Iowa, amending the proposed resolution to state “Any person found violating this policy will be asked to refrain from tobacco use or leave the grounds to use tobacco” and to exclude Klock’s Island campground area from the resolution. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

   Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to discuss bringing fiber-optic services into Fayette for businesses. McGrane informed the council Mr. Soderquist was unable to make tonight’s meeting and will reschedule. Moved Kragnes to table.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss the release of mortgage to James & Linda Tenney, Document #2012 1671, in the Fayette County, Iowa, Recorder’s Office. Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to release the mortgage. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to release the mortgage to Shirley Smith, Document #2012 1670, in the Fayette County, Iowa, Recorder’s Office. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to introduce the first reading of Ordinance 493 – Amending the code of ordinances of the city of Fayette, Iowa, by repealing and amending sections 92.02 of water rates and 99.02 of sewer service charges under chapters 92 and 99. The ordinance increases water and sewer rates by 2% on all rate levels to keep up with inflation, continue with improvements, replacing water and sewer lines, and replacing water meters. The minimum sewer charge will increase from $59.09 to $60.28 per quarter. The minimum water charge will increase from $38.01 to $38.77. The rate increase will begin on September 1, 2017, which is billable in December 2017. All the water and sewer rates shall automatically increase 2% per year on June 1 unless changed by resolution of council. After discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to approve the first reading of Ordinance 493. On roll call, Kragnes and Tucker ayes, Larson nay, Wulfekuhle abstained, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to introduce the first reading of Ordinance 494 – Amending the code of ordinances of the city of Fayette, Iowa, by repealing and amending section 106.09 of landfill fee under chapter 106. The ordinance increases the landfill fee by $0.25 per quarter. The increase is due to Fayette County increasing the landfill cost by $1.00 per person, per year starting in July 2017. The rate increase will begin on July 1, 2017, which is billable in September 2017. After discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the first reading of Ordinance 494. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     There being no further business, moved Kragnes, unanimous, to adjourn at 9:17pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 5-1-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

May 1, 2017

     The City Council of the City of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, May 1, 2017 at 7:30pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Kragnes, Larson, Nefzger, Tucker and Wulfekuhle.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 4/17/17 and the claims list of 4/18/17 – 5/1/17. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to approve the agenda as presented. Wulfekuhle asked to move item 6A, City Attorney Proposals under old business, so it is the last thing on the agenda. Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson to approve the amended agenda. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Upon Mayor Wenthe’s request and the Fayette Ambulance Services recommendation, moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to appoint Autumn Weaver and Mason Bantz to the Fayette Ambulance Service. Weaver and Bantz are planning on going through EMT school. Both passed background checks. All ayes, carried.

     City Administrator/Clerk McGrane informed the council that one of the Fayette ambulances hit a deer this past weekend on the way to a call. No one was injured and the insurance company has been contacted. The crew will primarily be using the second ambulance for calls. The city of Fayette received a check from Black Hills Energy in the amount of $2,000 to show their support and help fund the cities portion of hiring Zachary Mannheimer for the Community Placemaking Economic Assessment. McGrane received a $330 scholarship to help pay for some of the classes that he will be taking at the Iowa Municipal Professionals Institute & Academy in Ames this July as he works towards the City Clerk and City Finance certifications.

     Police Chief Pisanti advised the council the department assisted with the North Fayette Valley (NFV) prom this past weekend that was held at UIU. The department is preparing for UIU graduation this weekend and are working with some of the students as the students organize an off-campus party to help keep them under control.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to introduce NFV student Lance Butikofer and his math teacher, Brooke Lodge, as they inquire about constructing and placing a Little Library in a Fayette Park. Butikofer advised the council that NFV students and himself are building Little Library’s in shop class and would like to place them throughout the school district. A Little Library is a place where people may exchange books for free. Anyone may take a book or bring a book to share in the Little Library. Butikofer would like to place a Little Library at Cardinal Park in Fayette. After further discussion, the council recommended he place the Little Library at the Open Air Market because it may get utilized more. The goal is to have the Little Library finished and in place before the end of the current school year. The NFV school has one community service day a year, so they will not be able to manage or monitor the Little Library on a regular basis, that will be up to the community. Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, to let Lance Butikofer construct and place a Little Library at the Open Air Market. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to discuss approving a Freedom Rock be placed in the City of Fayette. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve placing a Freedom Rock in the City of Fayette. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to discuss American Tower Corporation’s three different conditional offers on the land they lease from the City of Fayette. After a brief discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to table until the next meeting when more information can be provided and the council can review the current lease.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss repairing the wooden bridge on the recreation trail. Mayer Wenthe advised the bridge was washed out on the east end and is getting worse. Wenthe called West Union Trenching and they referred it to Superlandscapes. Superlandscapes provided a bid. After a brief discussion, the council would like to see more than one bid for the project. Wenthe would like the bridge repaired by June 30, 2017 because the DOT will be coming out to look at the entire trail this summer. The council requested McGrane to seek additional bids, including placing a post on Facebook, and present them at the next council meeting.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss Resolution 2017-10. After a brief discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve Resolution 2017-10: A resolution of support for Fayette County to affiliate with the Northeast Iowa Regional Housing Trust Fund Program as a participating county. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to introduce the third and final reading of Ordinance 492 – Amending Fayette City Code Chapters 62.12 General Traffic Regulations, Penalties, and 63.12 Speed Regulations, Penalties, by increasing the penalties and fines. The ordinance increases the $75 and $50 fees in Chapter 62.12 to $100. These fines would include stop sign violations, expired insurance, not wearing a seat belt and other violations in Chapter 62. In Chapter 63, Speeding Regulations, the fees would increase from $75 to $100 for 1-10 miles per hour (mph) over the posted speed limit; $85 to $110 for 11-15 mph over the posted speed limit; and $95 to $125 for 16-20 mph over the posted speed limit. Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to adopt and approve the third and final reading of Ordinance 492. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss the city attorney proposals. The city received proposals from Hofmeyer and Hanson, PC of Fayette, Dillon Law, PC of Sumner, Brick Gentry, PC of West Des Moines, and Meyer Law Firm of Mason City. Larson advised he felt Dillon Law was one of the least expensive, close to Fayette and experienced as he represents other area cities. Tucker advised she was impressed with the proposal Dillon provided and how it outlined what he has done for communities that are similar to Fayette. Kragnes advised that it looked like Dillon had a good plan in place if there are any conflicts, is experienced to handle ordinance violations, and that his fees were reasonable. After further discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to move forward in hiring Dillon Law, PC as the new city attorney. Four voted aye, Nefzger nay, motion carried.

     There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 8:11pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 4-17-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

April 17, 2017

     The City Council of the city of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, April 17, 2017 at 7:30pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Kragnes, Larson, Nefzger, Tucker and Wulfekuhle.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Kragnes, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 4/3/17, claims list of 4/4/17 – 4/17/17, and the March 2017 Treasurer’s/Clerk’s Report & Budget Report. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Treasurer's Balance for Fund Accounts as of March 31, 2017: General $209,135.39; Streets $213,049.98; Debt Service $1,801.78; Water Utility $321,687.25; Water T&A $25,390.64; Sewer Utility $260,035.85; Landfill/Recycling $1,716.63; Yard Waste $14,493.20; Bolger Fund $185,566.71; TIF $42,806.82; Local Option Tax $72,686.50; Storm Water $9,217.66; Downtown Project ($28,985.99); Franchise Fees $43,844.87. March Receipts by Fund: General $9,214.85; Streets $13,477.57; Debt Service $94.89; Water Utility $3,034.16; Water T&A $110; Sewer Utility $4,648.24; LF/Recycling $877.14; Yard Waste $184; Bolger $2,512; TIF $65.43; Local Option $6,915.65; Storm Water $132. Total Receipts $41,265.93. March Disbursements by Fund: General $32,567.37; Streets $3,300.02; Water Utility $20,684.85; Water T&A $225; Sewer Utility $9,461.14; Downtown Project $500. Total Disbursements: $66,738.38. Investments: $1,285,525.58. Bank Balance $2,657,560.29. Balance with Library Funds $2,749,522.84.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Mayor Wenthe advised the council that he had spoken with the possible new owners of Boike’s Trailside Inn about the plans. Wenthe also reminded the council they were invited to the meeting tomorrow night with Zach Mannheimer with Iowa Business Growth. Other Fayette business owners and active members of some organizations and boards were also invited to attend this meeting. There will be a future meeting that the public will be invited to attend and we will announce that when the date is determined.

     Administrator/Clerk McGrane reported to the council that the City of Fayette’s application for a Clean Water SRF Water Resource Restoration Sponsored Project was recommended for funding. The city may be able to utilize this money if the city is awarded the CDBG grant. Public Works Director Hildebrand turned on the water and opened the restrooms at Cardinal Park and Klock’s Island Park/Campground last week. Roger Post provided the following Fayette Ambulance Numbers for the first quarter of 2017 (January-March): There were 52 total calls which included 14 transfers, 7 no transports, 5 cancelled and 3 mutual aid calls.

     Police Chief Pisanti told the council they are still working on the unpaid, over-due tickets project and are down to approximately 30 outstanding tickets. Pisanti escorted the Pony Express riders through downtown last week. Officer Davis is back from the LEIN school.  

     Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, to discuss Deb Boike’s December 2016 Water Bill. Boike had attended the February 6th, 2017 council meeting to inform the council that she believed someone had broken into one of her apartments and left a toilet running consistently which led to a water bill that was $4,400 over their average water bill. At that meeting, the council had advised her to contact her insurance company and they waived the late charges. Boike advised the council that her insurance company would not cover the bill and she read a portion of the letter she received from the insurance company. Boike mentioned when she sells the restaurant, she intends to pay off the high water bill. After discussion, moved Nefzger, seconded Kragnes, that due to the extenuating circumstance, starting in May of 2017, Boike may make $200 monthly payments to the city until the $5,321.09 is paid off; no late charges will be applied to this amount as she is making payments; if Boike sells the business she will pay the balance in full; and Boike will need to continue to pay the quarterly water bills under normal circumstances, including the current March 2017 bill. All ayes, carried.  

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss the Fayette Community Library Board minutes from March 8, 2017. Nefzger wanted to thank the Library Board for the thorough reports information they provide to the council. Moved Larson, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Larson, seconded Tucker, to discuss a possible new project presented by John and Sharon Orr. John and Sharon Orr would like to discuss trying to get a Freedom Rock for Fayette. The Freedom Rock was started about 18 years ago by a guy that painted a veteran’s mural on a large rock in Adair County. The painters goal is to promote Iowa tourism by painting an original Freedom Rock in every county in Iowa. Fayette County currently does not have a Freedom Rock. There is more information at thefreedomrock.com. The Orr’s thought a Freedom Rock would be nice in the Open Air Market along the recreation trail near the James Marvin Lee memorial bench. The Orr’s would be willing to submit the application and help raise money, but they would need permission from the city council that there is a designated spot to place the rock. There may also be an option to get a second or third rock that could be placed at another location along the trail or at the UIU campus. The cost would be somewhere around $6,000 to $8,000 and doesn’t include the cost of the rock. The Orr’s hope to start a fundraiser to help cover the costs. The council agreed to give the Orr’s permission to submit the application and will place this item on the next city council agenda.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss Kluesner Construction, Inc. crack sealing of city streets proposal. Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes to approve the Kluesner Construction, Inc. crack sealing proposal. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, to introduce the second reading of Ordinance 492 – Amending Fayette City Code Chapters 62.12 General Traffic Regulations, Penalties, and 63.12 Speed Regulations, Penalties, by increasing the penalties and fines. The ordinance increases the $75 and $50 fees in Chapter 62.12 to $100. These fines would include stop sign violations, expired insurance, not wearing a seat belt and other violations in Chapter 62. In Chapter 63, Speeding Regulations, the fees would increase from $75 to $100 for 1-10 miles per hour (mph) over the posted speed limit; $85 to $110 for 11-15 mph over the posted speed limit; and $95 to $125 for 16-20 mph over the posted speed limit. Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to adopt and approve the second reading of Ordinance 492. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 8:00pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 4-3-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

April 3, 2017

     The City Council of the City of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, April 3, 2017 at 7:30pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Kragnes, Larson, Nefzger, Tucker and Wulfekuhle.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 3/20/17 and the claims list of 3/21/17 – 4/3/17. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Mayor Wenthe advised he was asked to be a judge at the science fair at the Fayette Elementary School later this month.

     City Administrator/Clerk McGrane advised the council that there are Small City workshops for city officials to attend in May and June. McGrane informed the council that Fayette was not rewarded with the CDBG Water/Sewer Grant that we applied for to help with the downtown project. Diana with Upper Explorerland spoke with IEDA on Friday, March 31st and they explained some reasons why we were not rewarded the grant money: the project is not a competitive project compared to other applicants; other applicants have DNR violation orders and deadlines that must be met; Fayette’s water and sewer rates are not high enough; Fayette has no documented contamination occurring in our water/sewer lines; and the majority of the work is to the downtown area which would not affect the residents of Fayette. Fayette will find out if we were awarded the CDBG Community Facilities & Services grant in May.

     Police Chief Pisanti told the council he is continuing the push on unpaid, over-due parking tickets. Pisanti is sending out certified letters and is going to work with UIU to assist in contacting violators who have an over-due outstanding ticket. Pisanti has also created a list of vehicles with unpaid, over-due parking tickets. Vehicles on the list will be towed and impounded by the Fayette police until the parking ticket is paid. Fayette Officer Davis is attending LEIN (Iowa Law Enforcement Intel Network) school. The cost of the school and hotel is paid for by LEIN. LEIN disseminates intel between cities to look for similar crimes or offenders that jump from town to town committing crimes. Officer Davis will be Fayette’s contact person within the network.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss the Hofmeyer & Hanson bill. Mayor Wenthe spoke with John Hofmeyer III and Hofmeyer is willing to settle for the city paying 50% of the bill. The city has not been able to locate any resolution stating Hofmeyer & Hanson is the designated City Attorney, however they are still listed as our City Attorney through the Iowa League of Cities. After further discussion, moved Nefzger, seconded Wulfekuhle, to pay half of the Hofmeyer & Hanson bill in question. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to discuss raising ambulance crew member wages. The ambulance crew discussed and voted to raise the ambulance crew wages as follows: from $15/hour for Paramedic/Nurse exempt and $12/hour for all other members to $12/hour for drivers, $13/hour for EMT/EMR, $14/hour for AEMT and $15/hour for Paramedic/Nurse exempt. Nefzger advised the council the higher the level of service on the crew, the more training, hours of recertification that must be met and job responsibilities. The ambulance crew is also purchasing an IV pump for the service to use for patient transfers. Motion Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the raises to the ambulance crew wages. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to introduce the first reading of Ordinance 492 – Amending Fayette City Code Chapters 62.12 General Traffic Regulations, Penalties, and 63.12 Speed Regulations, Penalties, by increasing the penalties and fines. The ordinance increases the $75 and $50 fees in Chapter 62.12 to $100. These fines would include stop sign violations, expired insurance, not wearing a seat belt and other violations in Chapter 62. In Chapter 63, Speeding Regulations, the fees would increase from $75 to $100 for 1-10 miles per hour (mph) over the posted speed limit; $85 to $110 for 11-15 mph over the posted speed limit; and $95 to $125 for 16-20 mph over the posted speed limit. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to adopt and approve the first reading of Ordinance 492. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to discuss a city of Fayette Revolving Loan Fund (RLF). Wenthe reminded the council the RLF was previously discussed to provide an incentive for new businesses or expanding current businesses and using the Bolger Fund to fund the RLF. McGrane spoke with Diana at Upper Explorerland about RLF’s and Upper Explorerland administers RLF’s for other cities on contract. Most of the cities they administer for use other grants or loans to fund their RLF’s, so there is more administrative work involved. Diana recommended forming a committee or small group to get the process together and she would be willing to meet with the group to explain more details. Kragnes and Tucker volunteered to be a part of the small group and will coordinate a time to meet with Diana.

     Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, to discuss a request from Public Works Director Hildebrand to purchase 48 cubic yards of fiber (wood chips) for Rainbow Land Park, located in the 200 block of W. State Street, to place around the children’s play equipment for approximately $720.50 from SMI in Cresco. The money would come out of the parks department budget. Tucker advised she put in a request for volunteers to help place the fiber around the equipment and clean up the park during Upper Iowa University’s Fayette Appreciation Day. Tucker advised the Recreation Board is also purchasing new volleyball nets for the park. Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the request. All ayes, carried.

     There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 8:03pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 3-20-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

March 20, 2017

     The City Council of the city of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, March 20, 2017 at 7:30pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Kragnes, Larson, Nefzger and Wulfekuhle. Absent – Tucker.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 3/6/17, claims list of 3/7/17 – 3/20/17, and the February 2017 Treasurer’s/Clerk’s Report & Budget Report. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Treasurer's Balance for Fund Accounts as of February 28, 2017: General $232,487.91; Streets $202,872.43; Debt Service $1,706.89; Water Utility $339,337.94; Water T&A $25,505.64; Sewer Utility $264,848.75; Landfill/Recycling $839.49; Yard Waste $14,309.20; Bolger Fund $183,054.71; TIF $42,741.39; Local Option Tax $65,770.85; Storm Water $9,085.66; Downtown Project ($28,485.99); Franchise Fees $43,844.87. February Receipts by Fund: General $17,234.44; Streets $16,107.34; Debt Service $54.34; Water Utility $4,737.20; Water T&A $450; Sewer Utility $5,413.95; LF/Recycling $1,031.35; Yard Waste $209.10; Bolger $1,115; TIF $32.30; Local Option $8,178.72; Storm Water $159. Total Receipts $54,722.74. February Disbursements by Fund: General $46,666.39; Streets $19,975.76; Water Utility $2,991.58; Water T&A $675; Sewer Utility $26,852.68. Total Disbursements: $97,161.41. Investments: $1,285,455.25. Bank Balance $2,683,032.74. Balance with Library Funds $2,772,251.03.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Administrator/Clerk McGrane reported to the council that he attended the Fayette County Tourism meeting on March 7th in West Union and should have water bills finished and mailed out within the next week.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to discuss an update on the CDBG Water/Sewer and Community Facilities and Services grants. McGrane informed the council that Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission had not heard yet if Fayette has been awarded or denied these grants for the downtown and Water Street improvements. The city should be notified this month, that way if we are denied, we can reapply again. The deadline to have applications in for the next round is April 1, 2017. Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to reapply for both grants and submit the applications prior to the April 1, 2017 deadline, if the city is denied before March 31. All ayes, carried.  

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Kragnes, to discuss the Fayette Community Library Board minutes from February 8, 2017. After discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to discuss a request to construct a map kiosk displaying a stretch of the Volga River at Klock’s Island Park. Sam Freitag, a Life Scout who is working on his Eagle Scout project which will consist of a kiosk that will be placed at Klock’s Island Park down by the river, explained the project. The map will include the Volga River from Klock’s Island Park to the edge of the Volga Recreation Park. Along the river, Freitag will be placing numbered signs that will have solar lights. There will be GPS coordinates for each numbered sign that local 911 dispatchers will have in case of emergencies. Freitag is currently raising money for the project, which is estimated to cost $1,500. Freitag had already met with Public Works Director Jerry Hildebrand to discuss the structure of the kiosk and the location it will be installed at Klock’s Island Park. Nefzger thought it was an excellent project and thanked Freitag for doing it. Moved Larson, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve Sam Freitag’s request to construct the map kiosk at Klock’s Island Park. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Kragnes, to discuss increasing municipal citation fees. Chief Pisanti suggested the council raise municipal citation fees in Chapters 62.12 and 63.12 in the City of Fayette Code of Ordnances. Pisanti explained to the council the intent of the municipal citations is to correct bad behavior, but if the fees are too low, it doesn’t correct the problem. Pisanti said the current state of Iowa citation fines range anywhere from around $180 to over $250. The City of Fayette’s base citation is currently $50. Pisanti recommended raising the $75 and $50 fees in Chapter 62.12 to $100. These fines would include stop sign violations, expired insurance, not wearing a seat belt and other violations in Chapter 62. In Chapter 63 - Speeding Regulations, Pisanti recommended increasing the fees for the following speeds over the posted limit: 1-10 miles per hour (mph) would go up from $75 to $100; 11-15 mph would go up from $85 to $110; 16-20 mph would go up from $95 to $125. Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to have Administrator/Clerk McGrane increase the rates as suggested by Chief Pisanti in Chapters 62 and 63 in the City of Fayette Code of Ordinances and present it at a future council meeting. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss a RFP for City Attorney’s. McGrane provided two different examples of RFP’s to the council members. After discussion, moved Kragnes, seconded Larson to move forward with the two-page RFP with a deadline of April 24, 2017 and to forward the RFP to the Iowa State Bar Association, the Iowa League of Cities, Upper Explorerland as well as posting it on the City of Fayette’s website. All ayes, carried.

     There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 7:56pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 3-6-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

March 6, 2017

     The City Council of the City of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, March 6, 2017 at 7:30pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Larson, Kragnes, Nefzger, Tucker and Wulfekuhle.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 2/21/17 and the claims list of 2/22/17 – 3/6/17. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Tucker, seconded Nefzger, to open the public hearing on the proposed Fiscal Year 2018 Estimated Budget. All ayes, carried. Kurt Wood commented on the component of the budget that includes the relationship and collaboration between Upper Iowa University and the City of Fayette. Wood thinks the contract agreement that states the City of Fayette would provide law enforcement services to UIU is good for both parties. Wood said it brings the university and the city closer and as a retiree living on Main Street he thinks it is a wise move. Wood commends the council for getting it in the budget. Roy Karlson asked what the breakdown in costs were in reference to the UIU and City of Fayette agreement. Mayor Wenthe advised in the current contract that has been proposed UIU would pay approximately $98,000 to the City of Fayette which would cover the cost of one and half full-time police officers. There is a 2% annual increase in the contract and UIU would be responsible for purchasing a police vehicle and some related equipment. Should either of the parties decide to end the contract, they can do that with adequate notice. The cost to the City of Fayette would be approximately $37,000 and the City of Fayette should be able to have 24/7 police coverage. IPERS and social security is all part of the benefits package that is figured in to the contract. One change in the contract that the City of Fayette is requesting is, should one of the parties end the contract, unemployment costs be covered by UIU. Karlson commented that this agreement would be a smart move and that back in the 1980’s the city had 3 ½ officers. Wood added he likes the fact that it would place an armed and fully certified officer on campus. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve Resolution 2017-08: adopting the budget and certification of city taxes for fiscal year 2018. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Kragnes, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Mayor Wenthe shared the changes to the council committee appointments: Finance – Kragnes (Chair), Nefzger, Larson; Personnel – Nefzger (Chair), Kragnes, Wulfekuhle; Safety – Larson (Chair), Kragnes, Wulfekuhle; Streets & Sidewalks – Wulfekuhle (Chair), Larson, Tucker; Police – Mayor Wenthe (Chair), Nefzger, Tucker; Mayor Pro-Tem – Nefzger. Moved Nefzger, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the committee appointments. All ayes, carried.

     Administrator/Clerk McGrane advised the council that he attended a Municipal Finance and Economic Development Workshop in Independence on Feb. 21st. McGrane advised that the city is now set-up for people to pay their water/sewer utility bills, municipal citations and parking tickets online. McGrane will be working on finishing up the directions and procedures so people may pay their bills online when the next utility bills go out the end of this month. Last week a person paid their municipal citation online and people may also use their credit/debit cards to pay at city hall. Anyone who chooses to make a payment online or uses their credit/debit cards at City Hall must pay a small service fee. The service fee is paid to Convenient Payments who processes the transactions for the City of Fayette. McGrane also met with Dean Schade, the cities Loss Control Representative from IMWCA on Mar. 1st. Schade discussed the history of claims, explained the significant increase the city will see in their rates is due to quite a few claims over the last few years and a loss-of-time claim from last year, and steps the city can take to help prevent “preventable” accidents.

     Police Chief Pisanti (via speakerphone) informed the council the police have been doing a push on getting the unpaid parking tickets paid. Pisanti worked with Administrator McGrane to get the electronic and online payment system going. Last calendar year there were approximately 120 parking tickets issued but only about 45 were paid. The department is going to send out letters to the car owners who have received parking tickets but have not paid them and let them know they can now pay them online.

     Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, to discuss Resolution 2017-09: Amending the Fayette Ambulance Service (FAS) rates by approximately 5%. All ayes, carried. McGrane advised upon request he received the rates that Tri-State Ambulance Service charges in West Union, but pointed out they are a full-time service. McGrane had reached out to a few other services including Sumner, Oelwein, Arlington, Ackley and Garner for their rates, but had not heard back yet from any of them. Roger Post with the FAS advised that one of their crew members was going to research rates from other ambulance services, but that crew member was not at the last ambulance meeting. Post advised that they are also checking into charging for situations when the FAS provides emergency care treatment to a patient but then turns the patient over to a paramedic service or a flight crew. Currently if the FAS provides treatment and uses their supplies, then turns the patient over to another service or crew, the FAS doesn’t charge the patient. If the FAS responds to a call and doesn’t provide treatment or uses their supplies, then the service would continue not to charge the patient. Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve Resolution 2017-09: Amending the Fayette Ambulance Service rates by approximately 5%. Roll call, all ayes, carried. The new rates will be: $518 – Basic Life Support (Non-Emergency); $629 – Basic Life Support (Emergency); $741 – Advanced Life Support 1 (Non-Emergency); $853 – Advanced Life Support 1 (Emergency); $1,075 – Advanced Life Support 2 (Emergency); $210 – Paramedic Intercept; $16 – Mileage per Loaded Patient Mile; $52 per hour for stand-by.

     Moved Tucker, seconded Larson, to discuss a bill from Hofmeyer & Hanson. All ayes, carried. Mayor Wenthe advised the council that last year the council had asked John Hofmeyer to provide some legal advice and answer one question and the council received a document back from Hofmeyer. Wenthe had some concern expressed to him about the volume of information that was provided by Hofmeyer that was not requested by the council. Hofmeyer said the ordinance was sent to him by the city administrator. As he was reviewing it to figure out the answer to the council’s question, he found things missing and problems with it. He felt he would have to enforce the ordinance as city attorney. Kragnes asked where is the designation for city attorney or is it done on a contract basis. Wenthe advised there used to be a retainer paid to Hofmeyer & Hanson, but the city stopped paying it around 2014 and determined that the city would work with attorney’s that they selected per case. Part of the reason behind that was because they ran in to conflict of interest cases, which would happen in any small town. Wenthe stated the city should have an official attorney of record and in the budget, that was just passed it includes an expense for a retainer. The council’s direction was to bid out for a city attorney. Hofmeyer said he would agree to split the difference on the $1,110 bill where the city would only be responsible for paying $555. Kragnes said that in the document Hofmeyer provided to the council, it stated that Hofmeyer chose to review the ordinance on his own volition, and she would be concerned if the city pays for something that they didn’t ask for and that Hofmeyer took upon himself to do. Kragnes also stated that no one has been able to provide her a Resolution that designates Hofmeyer as the city attorney. Until someone can show the designation that Hofmeyer is city attorney, then Kragnes stated she doesn’t know if the city can say that Hofmeyer is the designated city attorney since the city has been operating under a contract basis with Hofmeyer since 2014. Hofmeyer stated they are appointed designated city attorneys until successors are chosen. Hofmeyer said he can find the appointment and show it to the council. Wenthe said he doesn’t believe the council has acted to appoint a city attorney since he’s been Mayor and is unsure if it carries forward even if the retainer is stopped. Wenthe believes that Hofmeyer & Hanson were looking out in the best interest of the city when reviewing the ordinance, but it was frustrating to him because he thought it was clear in what they were asking Hofmeyer to provide and the ordinance was still in the drafting portion of the process. Wenthe advised he would feel comfortable having the city pay $555 of the bill and ask any attorney the city is working with in the future to answer only what is asked or provide input back stating they would like to do modifications instead of doing the modifications then billing for them. After further discussion, the council would like to find out if Hofmeyer is still the city attorney.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss Lloyd Carnicle’s request to have the Fayette Show & Shine Car Show on Main St. throughout the summer of 2017. Lloyd Carnicle explained he would once again like to have a Fayette Show & Shine Car Show in Fayette and discussed the details. Moved Larson, seconded Tucker, to approve Lloyd Carnicle’s request and have the Fayette Show & Shine Car Show on Main St. on the third Thursday of the month in 2017 from 6PM to 9PM, starting in May and ending in September, and blocking off S. Main St. from Water St. to State St. All ayes, carried.

     There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 8:11pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 2-21-17

 REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

February 21, 2017

     The City Council of the city of Fayette, Iowa, met Tuesday, February 21, 2017 at 7:30pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Larson, Kragnes, Nefzger by telephone until 7:31pm. Absent – Wulfekuhle.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the appointment of Amy Tucker to the city council to fill the vacancy of Randall Sandhagen who resigned because of personal reasons. All ayes, carried. Mayor Wenthe then administered the oath of office to Amy Tucker and she was sworn in as a city council member. Her term will be until the next city election in November 2017.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 2/6/17, claims list of 2/7/17 – 2/21/17, the January 2017 Treasurer’s/Clerk’s Report & Budget Report, and the renewal of a beer license and native wine permit for Boarders Inn & Suites. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Treasurer's Balance for Fund Accounts as of January 31, 2017: General $261,919.86; Streets $206,740.85; Debt Service $1,652.55; Water Utility $337,592.32; Water T&A $25,730.64; Sewer Utility $286,287.48; Landfill/Recycling ($191.86); Yard Waste $14,100.10; Bolger Fund $181,939.71; TIF $42,706.09; Local Option Tax $57,592.13; Storm Water $8,926.66; Downtown Project ($28,485.99); Franchise Fees $43,844.87. January Receipts by Fund: General $23,363.82; Streets $14,995.96; Debt Service $53.46; Water Utility $51,004.61; Water T&A $526.49; Sewer Utility $75,074.47; LF/Recycling $12,991.15; Yard Waste $2,491; Bolger $120; TIF $28.93; Local Option $8,178.72; Storm Water $1,353.23; Franchise Fees $850.31. Total Receipts $191,032.15. January Disbursements by Fund: General $34,000.76; Streets $21,202.58; Water Utility $19,149.32; Water T&A $450; Sewer Utility $12,341.36; LF/Recycling $14,957.71. Total Disbursements: $102,101.73. Investments: $1,285,391.75. Bank Balance $2,725,471.41. Balance with Library Funds $2,815,219.51.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Upon Mayor Wenthe’s request and the Fayette Ambulance Services recommendation, moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, to appoint Dina Taylor and Bonnie West to the Fayette Ambulance Service. Dina and Bonnie are both RN’s and will be able to run at a Paramedic-exempt level. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to discuss the city of Fayette’s auditor’s reports, basic financial statements, supplementary information and schedule of findings and questioned costs. Each council member received a booklet from the auditor, Ridihalgh, Fuelling, Snitker, Weber & Co., PC. Mayor Wenthe advised the city has already been taking steps in practicing the recommendations that were suggested. Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to accept the auditor’s reports. Ally ayes, carried.

     Moved Tucker, seconded Kragnes, all ayes to discuss Resolution 2017-05: awarding the 2017 Water Improvement Project to Ray’s Excavating LLC of Edgewood, Iowa. Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, to approve Resolution 2017-05. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the Fayette Community Library Board minutes from January 11, 2017. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Tucker, seconded Larson, all ayes to discuss Resolution 2017-06: authorizing representation by the Fayette County Emergency Management Coordinator in analysis and development of Hazard Mitigation Plan for the city of Fayette. Lisa Roberts, Fayette County Emergency Management Coordinator, informed the council that the Hazard Mitigation Plan must be updated every five years. Roberts mentioned there were two federal disasters in Fayette County this last year. This plan will make sure the city of Fayette and Fayette County is in code with FEMA and the plan must be in place before any disaster to get federal assistance as well as to apply for certain federal grants. Fayette County is working with Upper Explorerland and they are planning and organizing the Fayette County Hazard Mitigation Planning meetings. There have been four meetings so far and City Admin/Clerk McGrane made it to the last meeting. Roberts advised legally the city of Fayette needs a representative to attend at least three of the meetings. The representatives from the city of Fayette will be giving input at the meetings as far as vulnerabilities to our city, our community facilities, our community services and resources, our plans and policies, among other things. The next meeting is Wednesday, March 1, 2017, at 6:30PM in the assembly room in the Fayette County Courthouse. Council member Kragnes advised she could attend the March 1, 2017, meeting and anyone else may attend as well. Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, to approve Resolution 2017-06. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

   Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, all ayes to discuss Resolution 2017-07: temporarily amending the City of Fayette’s Personnel Policy by providing full-time city employees up to 20 hours of personal time to use between 1/1/17 and 6/30/17 to get on a fiscal year schedule as recommended by the auditors. Moved Tucker, seconded Kragnes, to approve Resolution 2017-07. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, all ayes to discuss increasing ambulance rates by 5% per recommendation from the Fayette Ambulance Service. Lisa Roberts with the Fayette Ambulance Service mentioned that our service is one of the cheapest services in Iowa. Roberts said the billing company the city partnered with has been doing a great job. Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the 5% increase in ambulance service rates. All ayes, carried. A resolution reflecting this will be on the next city council agenda.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, all ayes to discuss signing an agreement with Data Technologies, Inc. to purchase city government accounting and payroll software and programs. Mayor Wenthe advised purchasing this software was discussed during the budget process. City Admin/Clerk McGrane advised the company currently has about a three month waiting process from when the contract is signed until they are able to install the software and provide training. The company rarely installs the software for new clients in June and July since that is the end and the beginning of the fiscal years and is a busy time for them. McGrane advised the sooner we sign the contract and pay the down payment, the sooner we get placed on the list. McGrane informed the council the down payment would come out of the P&A savings then the remainder of the costs would be paid next fiscal year, which is in the estimated budget. McGrane advised the best time to switch over to the new software would be at the end of this fiscal year or the beginning of next fiscal year because it will alleviate entering things into two different software programs. Moved Kragnes, seconded Tucker, to authorize the purchase of Data Technologies software. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, all ayes to discuss AC Skyways/Allamakee Clayton Electric Cooperative inquiring about placing an antenna on the city of Fayette’s water tower or the tower south of town to provide wireless internet to the community. City Admin/Clerk McGrane advised this company is looking on expanding their internet service into our area. They have made and are currently making similar agreements with surrounding towns. If the city lets them use our water tower or our tower south of town for their antenna, they would provide free internet service to three places in town. The company would then offer different internet packages to the community for a fee. Public Works Director Jerry Hildebrand doesn’t recommend letting them use the water tower as he has heard other cities run into issues with such agreements. For example, sometimes there is added costs when it comes to moving the antenna or equipment when the water tower needs cleaning, repainted or repaired. If there is not anything in the agreement, the added costs or responsibility of moving the equipment could fall on the city. Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to contact AC Skyways/Allamakee Clayton Electric Cooperative and have them research if the tower south of town would work for them and if so, attend a future council meeting to discuss further details. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes, all ayes to discuss getting rid of the old street signs. City Admin/Clerk McGrane advised last year Jerry Hildebrand purchased enough street signs to replace half the town to meet the new retro-reflectivity guidelines. The city posted a sign stating they were taking bids for the old street signs that were replaced. They were sold to the highest bidder and the money went back into the Street Department to help offset the costs of the new signs. This year, Hildebrand purchased the other half of the street signs. We have had a few people contact the city about letting them know when we decide to take bids for the next batch of old street signs. Wulfekuhle suggested donating the old signs to Main Street Matters or a non-profit so they could make some money as a fundraiser. Larson and Kragnes both felt the city should take bids as the city did last year. Moved Larson, seconded Kragnes to put the old street signs up for bid. All ayes, carried.

     There being no further business, moved Larson, unanimous, to adjourn at 8:08pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 2-6-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

February 6, 2017

     The City Council of the City of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, February 6, 2017 at 7:29pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Larson, Kragnes, Nefzger, Wulfekuhle.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 1/16/17, claims list of 1/17/17 – 2/6/17, and the December 2016 Treasurer’s/Clerk’s Report & Budget Report. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Treasurer's Balance for Fund Accounts as of December 31, 2016: General $272,556.80; Streets $212,947.47; Debt Service $1,599.09; Water Utility $305,737.03; Water T&A $25,654.15; Sewer Utility $223,554.37; Landfill/Recycling $1,774.70; Yard Waste $11,609.10; Bolger Fund $181,819.71; TIF $42,680.16; Local Option Tax $49,413.41; Storm Water $7,573.43; Downtown Project ($28,485.99); Franchise Fees $42,994.56. November Receipts by Fund: General $35,853.93; Streets $12,437.06; Debt Service $3,686.42; Water Utility $5,577.44; Water T&A $900; Sewer Utility $8,289.51; LF/Recycling $1,655.09; Yard Waste $342.43; Bolger $1,370; TIF $266.40; Local Option $8,178.72; Storm Water $245.65. Total Receipts $78,802.65. November Disbursements by Fund: General $49,804.24; Streets $3,860.35; Water Utility $21,762.10; Water T&A $724.92; Sewer Utility $18,230.20; Downtown Project $1,534.05. Total Disbursements: $95,915.86. Investments: $1,285,321.46. Bank Balance $2,636,540.99. Balance with Library Funds $2,725,799.39.

     Deb Boike advised the council Boike’s Trailside Inn’s last water bill was $5,321.09, which is approximately $4,400 over their average bill. Deb advised they have not had anyone renting out their upstairs apartments in the building during the last water billing quarter so she had turned the water off to the toilets inside the apartments. She believes someone broke into one of the apartments and had been living there because the door frame was broken. She believes the suspect turned the water back on to one of the toilets because she had found the toilets water running consistently. They did not catch the person who done the damage. Deb would like to ask the council to forgive a portion of the water bill. The council suggested Deb contact her insurance company to find out if this would be covered since there is vandalism and theft of services. Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to waive the late fees of $714.11 on their water bill due to the circumstance and to table this until Deb can contact her insurance company. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Mayor Wenthe shared the creative placemaking economic assessment proposal for the city of Fayette presented by Iowa Business Growth. At the last council meeting Zach Mannheimer with Iowa Business Growth gave a presentation over the phone. The total estimated cost for the proposal is $44,465, but Wenthe advised that Upper Iowa University was willing to pay for 50% of the proposal. Wenthe believes an UIU alumni may donate 25% of the cost. The Finance Committee recommended the city pay for the other 25% of the proposal out of the Bolger fund. Zach is willing to start the assessment this spring if everything falls into place. Motion Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, for the city of Fayette to support this project and pay 25% out of the Bolger fund. Three voted aye, Larson nay, motion carried.

     Mayor Wenthe attended the Fayette Fire Advisory Board meeting, along with the township clerks and trustees, on January 17, 2017, to discuss the Fayette Fire Department FY 2018 budget.

     Administrator/Clerk McGrane advised the council that UIU Peacocks for Progress is looking for Fayette projects to participate in as part of the annual Fayette Appreciation Day (FAD) scheduled for Wednesday, April 19 from 8am to noon. A rain date is scheduled for April 26. Let McGrane know if there are any ideas and he can submit them to UIU. McGrane attended a Clerks meeting in Postville on January 19 and looked at new accounting and payroll software in Ossian.

     Administrator/Clerk McGrane included his FY 2018 Estimated Budget Report reflecting the recommendations from the Personnel and Finance Committees in the agenda packet. Mayor Wenthe and McGrane highlighted a few things from the report, including: 100% city valuation increased $103,249; 2% Cost of Living Allowance for city employees starting July 1, 2017; health insurance decreasing 11.5% March 1, 2017; regular taxable value is $23,965,978 which is down $53,402; the rollback on residential property is increasing 1.31% to 56.94%; the rollback on multi-residential properties is going down 3.75% to 82.5%; township valuations increased so we will receive $575.40 more for the Ambulance and Fire Department; the FY 2018 tax levy was going up seventy-five cents, so the taxes on a house valued at $100,000 will be going up $58.98 from FY 2017. The city decided to budget $60,000 to purchase new water meters to replace the majority of them throughout the city and start purchasing remote transmitters, software and equipment to start remote reading. The goal is to purchase the remainder of the remote transmitters in FY19 so the city can go to monthly utility billing. Also budgeted is new accounting and payroll software for the city that will help implement the Chart of Accounts for Iowa governments that is recommended by the Office of the Auditor of the State of Iowa. The budget reflects moving forward with a contract to provide law enforcement services to Upper Iowa University. The contract reflects UIU paying $96,300 to the City of Fayette for law enforcement services, with an increase of 2% each year. The contract amount would cover the complete cost of one additional full time police officer, half the cost of a second full time police officer and other expenses needed to provide the service.  Due to the Fayette County Solid Waste Commission increasing their prices, an additional twenty-five cents per water bill will be added to the landfill fees. In the Parks Department, $10,000 is budgeted to continue upgrading and expanding the electrical in the camping area at Klock’s Island Park. The budget reflects a 2% increase in water and sewer rates to help with the replacement of water meters as well as continuing to improve water and sewer infrastructure around the city. Tax levy $15.14. The budget report is available at Fayette City Hall and the Fayette Community Library. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to adopt the proposed FY 2018 Budget Estimate. Roll call, all ayes, carried. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to set the time and date for the public hearing on the proposed FY 2018 Budget Estimate for March 6, 2017 at 7:30pm in Fayette City Hall and direct Administrator/Clerk McGrane to publish the budget hearing notice. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Motion Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the Finance Committee meeting minutes from January 30, 2017. All ayes, carried.

     Motion Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the Personnel Committee meeting minutes from February 1, 2017. All ayes, carried.

     Motion Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve the Finance Committee meeting minutes from February 2, 2017. Ally ayes, carried.

     Motion Nefzger, seconded Kragnes, to approve remaining with the city’s current health insurance company and plan, with the 11.5% decrease in monthly premiums. All ayes, carried.

     Motion Kragnes, seconded Nefzger to discuss replacing Randy Sandhagen on the city council. All ayes, carried. Mayor Wenthe recommended the council appoint Amy Tucker to fill the city council vacancy, after Randy Sandhagen submitted a letter on January 30, 2017 resigning due to personal reasons. The process of replacement was explained, including the council may fill the vacancy by appointment, then the electors of the City of Fayette have the right to file a petition for a special election within 14 days after the appointment is made or the notice of appointment is published in the newspaper, whichever is later. The required number of signatures on the petition would be 32 or 15% of 212 voters in the last election in November 2015. The cost of a special election would be around $850. The appointment shall be for the period until the next city election, later this year, in November 2017. Moved Nefzger, seconded Kragnes to approve the appointment of Amy Tucker to city council at the February 21, 2017 regular council meeting, at 7:30pm in the Fayette City Hall. All ayes, carried.

     Motion Nefzger, seconded Kragnes, to discuss Resolution 2017-03: amending the city Personnel Policy, Section 3.3 Vacation. All ayes, carried. Some changes to the policy include accumulating vacation hours on a monthly basis, instead of an annual basis and an employee may only accumulate a maximum of 200 vacation hours. The current policy did not have a maximum of vacation hours an employee could accumulate or carry-over. Motion Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve Resolution 2017-03. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 8:51pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 1-16-17

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

January 16, 2017

     The City Council of the City of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, January 16, 2017 at 7:31pm in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

     Roll call: Present - Council members Larson, Kragnes (7:35pm), Nefzger, Wulfekuhle. Absent – Sandhagen.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 1/3/17, claims list of 1/4/17 – 1/16/17, the November 2016 Treasurer’s/Clerk’s Report & Budget Report, and the renewal of a native wine permit for Touch of Elegance. Roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Treasurer's Balance for Fund Accounts as of November 30, 2016: General $286,507.11; Streets $204,370.76; Debt Service ($2,087.33); Water Utility $321,921.69; Water T&A $25,479.07; Sewer Utility $233,495.06; Landfill/Recycling $119.61; Yard Waste $11,266.67; Bolger Fund $180,449.71; TIF $42,413.76; Local Option Tax $41,234.69; Storm Water $7,327.78; Downtown Project ($26,951.94); Franchise Fees $42,994.56. November Receipts by Fund: General $30,610.27; Streets $15,046.47; Debt Service $700.63; Water Utility $2,873.56; Water T&A $50; Sewer Utility $3,214.65; LF/Recycling $661.42; Yard Waste $124; Bolger $50; TIF $262; Local Option $11,962.92; Storm Water $113.48; Franchise Fees $4,474.11. Total Receipts $70,143.51. November Disbursements by Fund: General $37,182.90; Streets $6,345.31; Debt Service $21,696.19; Water Utility $1,764.29; Water T&A $523.84; Sewer Utility $21,542.23; LF/Recycling $32.00; Bolger $2,050; TIF $14,565.32; Downtown Project $292.50. Total Disbursements: $105,994.58. Investments: $1,285,113. Bank Balance $2,653,654.20. Balance with Library Funds $2,744,954.67.

     Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Larson, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes to approve, carried.

     Upon Mayor Wenthe’s request, moved Larson, seconded Nefzger, to appoint Becki Wissmiller to the Recreation Board. All ayes, carried.

     Administrator/Clerk McGrane updated the council on the progress of implementing online payments for utility bills. There were a few more issues Convenient Payments and Jayhawk Utility Billing were correcting, but hopefully everything should be up and running in the near future.

    Police Chief Pisanti advised the council the police have been helping people as needed due to the icy conditions and would like to encourage people to stay off the roads in icy conditions. There was a tow-ban in Fayette County and the police department assisted people who slid off the roads in Fayette by providing them a ride to their Fayette homes or to a safe place in town.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to discuss new business incentives. All ayes. Mayor Wenthe advised McGrane reached out to different cities and Upperexplorerland to provide some ideas on incentives that other cities are doing. Some ideas included TIF (Tax Increment Financing), Fayette’s downtown is a TIF district, tax abatements, revolving loan funds/low interest loans, chambers that offer incentives, and water and sewer incentives. Upperexplorerland also provided information on programs that can assist women, individuals with minority status, disabled veterans and individuals with disabilities in starting a small business in Iowa. Larson advised he spoke to some people in the community and the feedback he received was for the city to offer a low or no interest loan to assist new businesses in getting started. There was discussion about UIU giving grant money to new businesses in the past and most of those businesses who received the money are no longer here. After further discussion, Wenthe advised we do have the Bolger fund that we could use for a low interest loan, since it would be paid back. Wenthe advised when the council goes through the budget, we should set aside funds for new business incentives. It was a consensus to table the matter.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger to approve the Fayette Community Library Board minutes from December 14, 2016. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle to approve the Recreation Board minutes from January 9, 2017. All ayes, carried.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Kragnes to discuss and approve the Personnel Committee meeting minutes from January 12, 2017. Wenthe advised the Personnel Committee did address some of the auditor’s requests. All ayes to approve the minutes, carried.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Kragnes, all ayes to have Zach Mannheimer with Iowa Business Growth provide a presentation via speaker phone. Mayor Wenthe met Mannheimer through Dennis Murdock, the CEO of Central Iowa Power Cooperative. Mannheimer was the founder and first executive director of the Des Moines Social Club, which is an old Firehouse that was renovated into an innovative arts and entertainment venue in Des Moines, Iowa. UIU asked Mannheimer to put together a concept of how the university could best work with the community to see some economic development and cultural/recreational growth. Iowa Business Growth has traditionally done 504 commercial lending as well as new market tax credit appropriations. The company has recently started creative place-making, which is geared specifically in how to take a community and build their economic and population output through cultural and entrepreneur ideas. Mannheimer’s focus is on rural communities in the state of Iowa and how to attract and retain young people to a community and build economic development. Mannheimer has recently done work or is currently working in the Iowa communities of Algona, Fort Dodge, Earlham, Council Bluffs, Dubuque and Mason City. He is in the process of looking for a few more projects to work on for 2017-2018. Dennis Murdock introduced Mannheimer to the city of Fayette and UIU. Mannheimer came up to Fayette a few months ago to tour UIU and the city of Fayette and discuss what the opportunities and challenges that the residents of Fayette are looking at as well as the students.  Mannheimer shared a few ideas of what he would address in Fayette including the recent closing of the restaurants in town and the vacant downtown lots. If UIU and/or Fayette would hire Iowa Business Growth, the end goals would be to determine how to get students more involved in downtown Fayette and vice versa, how do we create more student programming at UIU, how do we upgrade Fayette’s economic ability, how do we upgrade Fayette’s population growth, how do we make Fayette a strong community that is well positioned for the next 30 years, how do we make Fayette stand out, and how do we get more people to move or work in Fayette and start new businesses. They would start with a visioning process which would include getting the community engaged in ideas. They would then take the concepts and look at every possible variable, put them through a feasibility model to see if they can be economically feasible, can they be sustained and if so, what is the best thing to do and where could they find the capitol dollars to make it work. The city would then be provided a full comprehensive, actionable report, which would be a very specific plan of what to do. The community and UIU would need to work together and there would need to be a better partnership between both for it to be successful. Mannheimer mentioned that Fayette has one of the nicer Opera Houses in the state of Iowa and he feels it is not being utilized as much as it should be. After the presentation by Mannheimer, Mayor Wenthe told the council that Mannheimer presented a proposal to UIU, but it was mostly geared at UIU and not the community as a whole. The university informed Mannheimer they would want to include the community to make it more of a joint project, if they decided to go ahead with the proposal. The proposal was for $40,000, but Wenthe thought UIU would commit to half of the cost and there may be some other community members that may be interested in sponsoring some money towards this proposal as well. Wenthe would be willing to share the proposal with the council and the council can decide if they would be willing to pay for 25% of the cost. There was brief discussion and concerns if the proposal only included ideas. Wenthe advised the proposal would include part of the implementation of the project. Wenthe advised he will provide more information to the council so they can determine if it is something they would be interested in.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, all ayes to discuss bids for the 2017 Water Improvement System on Madison St. and Jones St. and a motion for a tentative award. The project was budgeted for in FY16 and again in FY17 and would include replacing a 2 inch water line on Madison St. that was originally intended to be used only for Waste Water Treatment, but since then service lines were run from houses along Jones St. and Madison St. to the 2 inch and/or a 4 inch water lines. A new 6 inch water line will replace the 2 inch and 4 inch water lines in this area as well as connect the water line from Madison St. to the Jones St. water line. The Iowa DNR requires a 6 inch line for replacing water mains. This will provide better water pressure to the houses in the area and allow the city to install a new fire hydrant. On January 12, 2017, five bids were opened and read by Jon Biederman of Fehr Graham Engineering & Environmental at Fayette City Hall. The estimate and bid totals were as follows: Engineer’s estimate - $128,646.25; Ray’s Excavation LLC of Edgewood, Iowa - $111,275.75; Skyline Construction Inc. of Decorah, Iowa - $119,062.99; Bacon Concrete LLC of Postville, Iowa - $169,879.40; Summers Enterprise Inc. of Masonville, Iowa - $170,851.55; and Tschiggfrie Excavating of Dubuque, Iowa - $222,788.55. After reviewing all the bids, Fehr Graham recommended the council award the construction contract for the project to Ray’s Excavating LLC per their proposal. There was some discussion with the council if blacktop or concrete would be used. McGrane advised he can get further information and that there could be change orders during the project if any changes were decided on by the council. Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to award the construction contract for the project to Ray’s Excavating LLC per their proposal, subject to receipt of the Iowa DNR Water Supply Construction Permit, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Nefzger, to approve Resolution 2017-01: Resolution revising and updating the job description for the City Administrator/Clerk. On roll call, all ayes, carried.

     Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve Resolution 2017-02: Resolution revising and updating the job description for the Chief of Police. Some of the suggested changes were based off of the last city audit. On roll call, all ayes, carried.  

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Wulfekuhle, to discuss Resolution 2017-03: Resolution amending the City Personnel Policy, Section 3.3 Vacation. Wenthe advised the council requested the vacation policy be looked at when the council was in the process of hiring City Administrator/Clerk McGrane. The personnel committee provided some direction on amending this section which is included in this Resolution. McGrane advised he thought of some other changes after he drafted this version which would make vacation fall on a fiscal year basis as recommended by the auditors. McGrane will make the revisions and present it at the next council meeting. The council discussed that the auditor had also pointed out the city needs to make sure they are following a fiscal year instead of calendar year for sick leave/personal leave. McGrane asked for recommendations on how the council would like to correct the issue. Larson suggested giving all employees up to twenty (20) hours of personal time, which is half of the forty (40) hours employees may earn each year for personal time, if they have earned the time, to use between now and June 30, 2017. Then on July 1, 2017, we enforce the current policy and continue to follow it on a fiscal year basis. McGrane advised he will put this item on the February 6th, 2017, agenda. Moved Kragnes to table the item until the suggestions discussed were updated in the resolution.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Kragnes, to approve Resolution 2017-04: Resolution adding the current cash health compensation to the current salaries of the library director, assistant public works director and city maintenance worker. After brief discussion, three voted aye, Larson nay, motion carried.

     Moved Nefzger, seconded Kragnes, to discuss approving vacation carry-over from 2016 to 2017 for Linda Adams, Adam Hildebrand, Gerald Hildebrand and Rich Pisanti. This is another item that the auditor recommended.  Nefzger would like to see this passed, but adding that employees only carry-over up to two hundred (200) vacation hours and the city pays out the remainder of the vacation hours to the employees who have earned more than the two hundred (200) hours. Only the library director and the public works director would be paid out the remainder hours because they are the only two employees who have earned more than the two hundred (200) hours. Nefzger would also like to include that employees may no longer carry-over hours once they reach two hundred (200) hours. There was brief discussion on sick leave hours and other personnel policy items. Moved Nefzger, seconded Wulfekuhle, to approve the carry-over of vacation hours from 2016 to 2017, not to exceed a maximum of two hundred (200) vacation hours, for Linda Adams, Adam Hildebrand, Gerald Hildebrand and Rich Pisanti, and the city pays out the remainder of the vacation hours to the employees who have currently earned more than two hundred (200) hours. The employees may no longer carry-over vacation hours once they reach the maximum of two hundred (200) hours, unless they submit a letter to the City Administrator/Clerk to be placed on the next council agenda and provide a valid explanation of why they should be able to accumulate more than the maximum of two hundred (200) vacation hours. The council will then determine if the request is granted or denied. All ayes, carried.

   There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 9:12pm.

Council Meeting Minutes 1-3-17

Regular Council Meeting

January 3, 2017

The City Council of the City of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, January 3, 2017, at 7:30PM in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

Roll call: Present - Council members Larson, Nefzger, Sandhagen, Wulfekuhle. Absent - Kragnes.

Moved Nefzger, seconded Larson, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 12/19/16 and the Claims List of 12/20/16 – 1/3/17. On roll call, all ayes, carried.            Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Nefzger, to approve the agenda as presented.  All ayes, carried.

Mayor Wenthe scheduled a finance committee meeting for Monday, January 16th at 6PM.  It will be the first meeting to start going over the budget for fiscal year 2018.  Wenthe also had spoken with City Administrator/Clerk McGrane earlier today about drafting a list of available downtown commercial properties/buildings, either for sale or for rent, with the permission of the owners, that the city may use as a marketing tool.  The list will help if anyone hears of anyone looking into starting a business or buying an existing business or store front.  We will have Sam Whitehead, the Fayette County Economic Director, provide assistance with the document as well.  Wenthe would like to have a draft at the next council meeting, if possible.

City Administrator/Clerk McGrane advised the council that Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission (UERPC) and himself finished completing the CDBG grant applications for the downtown project and submitted them to the state on December 22nd, 2016.  McGrane is continuing to work with Convenient Payments and Jayhawk Utility Billing to finish setting up online payments and automatic bank withdrawals.  City Hall finished the utility bills a little earlier than normal and were able to mail the bills on December 22nd.  On Tuesday, December 27th, McGrane met with Jon Biederman with Fehr-Graham Engineering in reference to the 2017 water system improvements that will take place on Madison Street and Jones Street this summer.  We have started seeking bids for the project and the sealed proposals will be opened and bids tabulated at 10AM on January 12th, 2017, at Fayette City Hall for consideration by the City Council at the next council meeting.  Work on the project may not start until Monday, May 8th, 2017, and must be completed by July 28th, 2017.    On Wednesday, December 28th, a representative from Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield came up and spoke to most of the city employees about Health Insurance Plans.  The monthly premium for our current plan will decrease by 11.50% effective March 1st, 2017.  If any Fayette citizens had a live Christmas tree, they may set them out on their curb before noon on Wednesday, January 4th, 2017, and the Public Works department will pick them up.  The Fayette Cemetery Board will hold its annual meeting on Friday, January 13th, at 1PM in the ICN Room at the Fayette Community Library.  The public is invited to attend.

Police Chief Pisanti advised overall the city has been quiet.  They had a domestic violence call that led to an arrest, otherwise they have been conducting quite a few house checks.  There was also a report of gun shots but after officers investigated, it was discovered someone had shot off fireworks. 

Mayor Wenthe wanted to mention to the council that January is a busy time preparing the budget, members of the finance committee and the personnel committee should be prepared for meetings.

There being no further business, moved Nefzger, unanimous, to adjourn at 7:45PM.

Council Meeting Minutes 12-19-16

Regular Council Meeting

December 19, 2016

The City Council of the City of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, December 19, 2016, at 7:30 p.m. in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding by telephone.

  Roll call: Present - Council members Larson, Sandhagen, Wulfekuhle. Absent – Kragnes, Nefzger.

  Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Larson, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 12/5/16 and the Claims List of 12/6/16 – 12/19/16.  On roll call, all ayes, carried.

  Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Larson, to approve the agenda as presented.  All ayes, carried.

  Upon Mayor Wenthe’s request and the Fayette Fire Departments recommendation, moved Larson, seconded Wulfekuhle, to appoint Royce Bantz to the Fayette Fire Department.  The mayor provided a strategic plan diagram/template to the council as an example the city could use as we focus on a mid to long-term plan for the city.  Some ideas Wenthe recommended for the strategic plan included growth downtown or in businesses in general, growth in housing, mid to long-term infrastructure needs and improving or enhancing the cultural and recreational opportunities in our community.  He would like the council to not only think of how we can improve in these areas but how we plan to accomplish them.  The example document is something the council can change and adjust as the city moves forward.  Wenthe would like to discuss the strategic plan again in January and the council should share any feedback with McGrane or Wenthe.  Wulfekuhle mentioned the current city incentives need to be looked at.

City Administrator/Clerk McGrane reported that he worked with Convenient Payments and Jayhawk Utility Billing to finish setting-up online payments and automatic bank withdrawals.  McGrane hopes to test the process the week of December 19th to make sure everything works.  Once it is working, we will promote the service to the community.  People interested would need to contact City Hall to find out what steps they need to take to utilize this service.  The Fayette Recreation Board reported there were over 20 letters sent to Santa through the mailbox located at the Open Air Market.  Some of the letters came from kids who live in surrounding cities.  The Christmas in Fayette committee is accepting donations through City Hall to help replace and add to their light display at the Open Air Market.  New lights or monetary donations will be accepted. The next city council meeting will be Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017, at 7:30PM due to the holiday.

Police Chief Pisanti advised the council the police department has been enforcing the snow/parking ordinance. They have issued over 50 parking tickets.  Pisanti is trying to work with tow companies or vendors on towing vehicles late at night.  The police department is also conducting vacation house checks over the holiday.  If any Fayette citizens will be away for the holidays, contact the police department and they will check their house while they are away.

Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Larson, to discuss the Fayette Recreation Board Minutes from December 5, 2016.  It was mentioned that the Rec Board is organizing caroling tonight.  Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Larson to approve the minutes.  All ayes, carried.

Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Larson to approve the Fayette Community Library Board minutes from November 9, 2016. All ayes, carried.

Moved Larson, seconded Wulfekuhle, to discuss Fayette Fire Department calls from June 15, 2016 to December 13, 2016.  The department responded to one building fire, four brush/grass fires, six vehicle accidents, six automatic alarms and nineteen meetings/practices/miscellaneous calls.  Fayette Chief Jason Rohde advised the number of calls for this time frame is a little above the 30-year average. 

Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Larson to discuss hiring WHKS Engineering for the downtown project.  City Administrator McGrane explained the formality of the process.  Sandhagen asked if the businesses will have input on the plan.  Wenthe advised that is the intention and we will need to provide good communication with the downtown businesses during the process.  Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Larson, to hire WHKS for the downtown project.  All ayes, carried.

Moved Wulfekuhle, seconded Sandhagen to discuss options for incentives for new businesses.   Sandhagen would like the council to start putting together a comprehensive incentive plan for new businesses.  If need be, make the plan retroactive if someone does open a new business before the plan is put in place.  Sandhagen said he heard there may be some interest in a business downtown and he wanted to make sure if the council came up with a plan in the near future, the new business owner would be able to take advantage of the new incentive plan.  Wenthe advised McGrane could check with the League of Cities and other communities to find out what incentives are used and review our current plan.  Downtown is a TIFF district, so we want to make sure whatever incentives we may offer are in line with TIFF districts.  Wenthe would like McGrane to compile a list of ideas for the council to consider at the second council meeting in January.  If anyone has any ideas or suggestions, contact McGrane so he can include it on the list.    

There being no further business, moved Larson, unanimous, to adjourn at 7:49 p.m.

Council Meeting Minutes 12-5-16

Regular Council Meeting

December 5, 2016

The City Council of the City of Fayette, Iowa, met Monday, December 5, 2016, at 5:30 p.m. in the Fayette City Hall pursuant to law and rules of said council, Mayor Wenthe presiding.

Roll call: Present - Council members Kragnes, Larson, Sandhagen, Wulfekuhle. Absent - Nefzger.

Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the consent agenda consisting of the regular meeting minutes of 11/21/16 and the Claims List of 11/22/16 – 12/5/16. On roll call, all ayes, carried. Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson, to approve the agenda as presented. All ayes, carried.

Mayor Wenthe spoke with council member Nefzger and Nefzger advised she may be missing a few more council meetings over the next few months as she has some temporary conflicts, but she will try and get to as many meetings as she can. At the last meeting the council appointed Tristan Beyer to the Fayette Ambulance Service. Tristan is a National Certified EMT.

Upon the mayor’s recommendation, moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to reappoint Jeff Bradley for another two years as the City Treasurer for Fayette. All ayes, carried.

Moved Kragnes, seconded Wulfekuhle, to reappoint Jason Rohde as the Fayette Fire Chief for 2017, upon the mayor’s and fire departments recommendations. All ayes, carried.

City Administrator/Clerk McGrane reported on November 22nd, Public Works Director, Jerry Hildebrand, and himself met with Dan Ashworth with Municipal Supply, Inc. They discussed the steps they need to take to prepare for implementing radio transmitters on water meters. McGrane had a short training on November 23rd with Jayhawk Utility Billing to start setting-up automatic payment withdrawals and online payments. On November 30th McGrane met with Jim Willis with Iowa Municipal Benefits Plan to discuss a new program created to assist Iowa cities provide health and other benefit packages to their employees that compare to what larger municipalities and private organizations are providing today. Willis will also look into options for our current employee health insurance coverage to see if we can lower the cities rates, yet still provide good coverage for employees. McGrane met with Laura Roussell with Black Hills Energy about programs they offer to customers. Floyd Alber donated $300 to the City of Fayette to be used for flowers on Main Street.

Police Chief Pisanti advised they are closely monitoring parked vehicles making sure they are following the snow ordinance. The department has already issued over thirty parking citations and have towed a few vehicles.

Moved Kragnes, seconded Larson to introduce Sam Whitehead, the Fayette County Economic Director, to provide an update on what he has been working on. Whitehead is continuing to explore establishing a mental health clinic outside Clermont, but funding has been a hold-up. There was a market study done around two years ago when NE Iowa Behavior Health was looking for a home in West Union for patients in need of health services to live in while they were being rehabilitated or treated. There are very few beds in our region for mental health patients, so there is a need for such a facility. The biggest impact to our area for bringing in this type of facility would be more employment opportunities, the construction of the facility would bring people, and it would benefit patients and their families. This is more of a community development than strictly economic development.

Whitehead has also been working on coordinating business trainings through NE Iowa Business Network and their partnership with NICC. They hosted a social media class last spring and a customer service class in November. The classes were funded by a grant from USDA, but the funds were not granted to them for this next year. They are hoping to get funding again for these classes in 2018. Mayor Wenthe asked where the classes are normally held. Whitehead advised usually the RAMS Center in Oelwein since they are through NICC, but Whitehead has tried to get them to hold the classes in other cities. Wenthe said UIU hosted some in previous years and the Fayette Opera House may be another place in Fayette to hold the classes. Whitehead advised going forward he will continue to push them to host trainings elsewhere. There is a Quickbooks training at NICC in Calmar coming up. If anyone is interested, contact Whitehead and he will get the information about the class to them. Whitehead mentioned people looking to start a new business or current business owners may request free business consultations through the University of Northern Iowa Small Business Development Center. The center can help existing businesses, for example reviewing their budgets, and can assist those interested in starting a business look for start-up funds. NICC also partners with a group to provide the same service. NICC counselors are looking at putting together training sessions and they can hold the sessions in our area. If there is a specific need that a business or businesses would like to learn more about, the counselors can put a presentation together about the topic and answer questions.

Whitehead advised there were two new businesses that came in to West Union. Whitehead is working with Home Base Iowa and looking into having businesses sponsor a veteran. The business would help show the veteran around town and introduce them to key services. He thought Boarders Inn & Suites in Fayette may have an agreement to provide a reduced rate to veterans if they were looking at resources around town.

Whitehead met with City Administrator McGrane the previous week to discuss some downtown revitalization ideas. Wenthe advised there has been recent concerns from the council about the loss of businesses in town and open store fronts. Wenthe is hoping to discuss with the council next year and during budget planning about getting more aggressive with offering incentives. Wenthe hopes Whitehead will help us when there are opportunities he is aware of or if there are better ways we can market the available buildings and facilities. Whitehead advised some ideas we can do as a community to advertise the space and show it off would be making sure the store fronts are clean and open so people can visualize what will go in there. Having a community potluck, get-together, a movie, or something else in the available buildings to get people in there may also help. Tax abatement is a budget neutral option as far as an incentive to offer new businesses willing to build or add onto an existing building. For example, the city could refund 75% of the new businesses taxes for the first five years, or something similar. Typically, five to ten years are offered for tax abatement incentives.

Whitehead advised he gets notified if a new business or industry is looking at building or expanding and has filed with the state as well as the requirements they are looking for. If Fayette County has something that meets their requirements, then Whitehead notifies the administrator of the city and the owner of the facility. Whitehead advised he hasn’t had any notifications come in. Main Street Iowa is suggesting cities create business cards that community members can pass out when they are on trips beyond their region to businesses that would be a good fit for their communities. It would let the business know if they are looking at expanding to look into their city. Whitehead said he looked into a business to see if they would expand into one of our downtown store fronts, but it was too close to their other business. Whitehead suggested releasing a small survey asking what kind of businesses do people want to see in our town can help with ideas of what type of business to pursue.

Wenthe mentioned Fayette does not have an active chamber or betterment foundation. If Whitehead knows of any best practices that other communities have done to help get people engaged in their chamber process to let us know. McGrane asked if Fayette County has a county-wide chamber since there are quite a few smaller towns in Fayette County making it hard to have a city chamber that only a few members are a part of. A county-wide chamber could maybe rotate events among the towns that participate. Whitehead said that could be a good idea and may not be too difficult to start.

Chief Pisanti advised the council he is going to pull the approval to purchase vehicle mounted radio and repeater for the new police patrol vehicle from the agenda so he can get more information.

There being no further business, moved Wulfekuhle, unanimous, to adjourn at 6:12 p.m.

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