City of Russell
August 3, 2015 7pm
Mayor Pro Tem Duane Bedford called the meeting to order at 7pm. Mayor Ed Scheel was absent. Council members in attendance were Susan Beecher, Dana Blue, Crystal Moore and Jay Pierschbacher. Others in attendance were Fire Chief Craig Alexander.
Visitors were Delores Carroll, Cody Carroll, Craig Gooder, Linda Shumate, Austin Smith, Gene Simmons, Dusty Simmons, Kevin Tanner, and Emilee Kaufman,
On a motion by Jay with second by Crystal it was approved to accept the resignation from Wendy Nickell as City Clerk effective August 31. 2015. Motion carried 5-0. Jay made the motion to approve the month to month consulting fee of $500 per month for Wendy Nickell to be available for clerk assistance/training the month of September and possibly October. if needed with second by Crystal. Motion carried 5-0.
On a motion by Crystal with second by Jay the minutes from the previous meeting were approved. Motion carried 5-0.
Crystal made the motion to approve the income/expense report with second by Susan. Motion carried 5-0. Susan asked the city clerk what the balance is in the franchise fee account. Jay spoke up and asked that she not ask questions that are spoken as an attack on the city clerk. He said the question is fine but don’t speak in a matter that is derogatory toward her. The clerk will look up that information after the meeting. Susan asked why financials were not being published in the paper and has been asked by residents and one of those residents’ wives was in attendance at the meeting. The clerk stated the financials are published in the paper every month along with the minutes from each council meeting. There is proof of publication documents in the published items binder here at city hall.
Austin Smith with Garden and Associates-The PPG Grant was approved. Austin is making up a map of the sewer system from the old city maps. IRWA will help with the smoke testing selected areas of the city. Their service is free to the city. The city will have to pay for the smoke canisters. The smoke testing will help determine where to do cleaning and televising of the sewer system. We don't have enough grant money to televise the whole system, but the plan is to test and clean sewers in at least half the city. Storm sewer maps are not much help due to poor condition of those maps.
Linda Shumate with the Monroe County SWCD concerning the Cedar Creek watershed project was here to explain 28E agreement. Council members will study the information Linda handed out, but will wait to join the 28E agreement at this time so the Mayor can have input as well. The city can join the 28E agreement at any time. The city needs to provide a letter to Linda that the city does not wish to join the 28E agreement at this time.
Craig Gooder feels he was wrongly accused by a council member of putting a note in another resident’s mailbox about their lot in town that needed mowing. He said he would never do that. He said he offered for this person to come talk to him about it and they never did. So he asked council member S Beecher if they were good. Craig said he heard that is where it came from and she said that is heresy. He asked K Tanner who was present why he wanted to talk to him. K Tanner says he wanted to ask him a question. Tempers flared and Duane stopped the proceedings and asked, is this a council issue or personal issue. The parties agreed it was personal and Craig then said let’s step outside, to talk and resolve the issue. Craig and Kevin left the meeting.
Emilee Kaufman wants to talk with the council about putting in a culvert to divert flooding in front of her house. She had pictures she shared with the council. The city will work on checking the area for a culvert that might be buried there and add another culvert. Duane will need to check with another resident in town that owns property in that area to get permission to do work on or near his property.
Delores Carroll asks for approval to close the street for a street dance at fall festival Sept 19. On a motion by Dana with second by Susan approval was given to close the street in front of the Southside for the street dance. Motion carried 5-0.
Fire Dept-September 19 is fall festival and the Fire Dept would like to again use the park for the BBQ cookoff contest. The entrants would be bringing in their equipment Friday evening. The Fire dept would get the key from Larry to unlock the hydrant for use during the cookoff. The Fire Dept would pay for one kybo and Craig asks if the city would pay for another one as they did last year. Dana made the motion for the city to pay for one kybo with second by Crystal. Motion carried 5-0.
Street dept-pot holes are being fixed and are ongoing. A culvert needs to be replaced on E Shaw between G. Trusty and H. Reed. There is a problem with a culvert east of R. Hensley where a section of black plastic culvert tends to hold water back. He plans to dig out the water-way when it dries up so it can flow to the culvert under the road. A culvert at L Krutsinger driveway needs to be replaced as well. C. Smith Lucas County road supervisor looked at the culvert and it was his opinion that a 30" culvert needs to be placed there.
Jay said a lot of patching has been done and he thinks it looks good. The skid loader had 2 flat tires on Friday. The skid loader tires are bald and need replaced. A bid was given by R & R Tire at $150 each. Duane contacted Ed and it was decided to purchase the tires per bid from R & R.
Water/Wastewater-Water loss was up but part of that was from the tower being emptied, cleaned and then re-filled. Jim Neer spoke to council member about his leak at the meter pit on the property he owns west of his house. The water in the pit needs to be tested again. There is leak near H. Reed on E Shaw and the water needs to be tested at that site as well. Dana brought up the issue with the ditch in front of the school that holds water. Jay mentioned he doesn't think culvert has enough fall. More investigation needs to be done to see if any correction can be made to resolve this standing water issue.
Old business-Thank you to Jay for re-roofing the VB shelter house. He asked that the city give some monetary payment to the individual that helped him. Jay will talk with the individual about what he would like to do. The electrical cable needs reattached and Jay asks that it not be attached through the roof, which could damage the new roof.
The owners of a property on West Ames have torn the house down and need to be notified that the debris cannot be burned. Duane will go talk to them about DNR rules for demolishing/removing a structure.
New business-Dana made the motion to table choosing council date for September until the meeting tomorrow evening with second by Jay. Motion carried 5-0.
Crystal made the motion to adjourn at 8:55pm with second by Susan.