Ellendale City Council
By SCOTT GROTH
The Ellendale City Council met Thursday December 13 with Mayor Engel, Councilmen Helland, Reiter, Goebel and Groth present. Also in attendance were Donovan Eaker, Steve Hackett, Cindy Goebel, and City employees Steve Louks, clerk, Pete Paulson, Liquor Store manager and Roger Swearingen, maintenance.
The council held three public hearings on Thursday evening.
The first hearing was a Truth in Taxation hearing regarding the proposed city levy. Mayor Engel opened the hearing with a brief overview of the purpose of the meeting and then opened the meeting up for questions. Being none, the hearing was closed.
The second hearing, to amend Ordinance # 61, was opened at 6:45 pm. Engel again gave a brief statement about the process of the hearing and opened the floor for questions. Mayor Engel noted to the council that the word boulevard will be taken out of the new ordinance. After a few comments the hearing was adjourned.
The third hearing was a mandatory meeting to be held concerning the Municipal Liquor Store (MLS) financial losses for the year 2011. Engel explained to the audience this hearing was about the year-ending balances for the MLS as audited for 2011. By law the city must hold a hearing on the MLS if the business shows a loss in two of the last three years. The floor was opened for questions. There were several questions asked. After the allotted time for the hearing the council decided to try and get the auditor to come to a future meeting to answer some of the public’s questions.
The regular meeting was called to order at 7:30 pm.
During his monthly report, Swearingen asked the council to consider taking applications for the city maintenance position. Swearingen told the council he had been in contact with the League of Cities staff regarding him being mayor and maintenance person. Swearingen told the council that the league said he could train in someone, but cannot hold both positions. Swearingen said he will officially step down as maintenance person on January 30, 2013. However, he added, there is a lot for someone new to learn. The council agreed, as they had asked to start this process back in October. Mayor Engel told the council he would put together the questionnaire for the position. The council discussed when all applications should be in by and came up with January 7.
Swearingen continued his report by informing the council that the FEMA project is 98% done and that he is filling out the paper work for payment. Swearingen asked the council to request a night light at the new recycling site. The council passed Resolution 12-13-12-10 requesting Alliant Energy for a light. Swearingen asked the council to pay $299 for him to attend the League of Cities training for new council members. The request was approved. Groth asked Swearingen if he had any reflective posts he could put by the sand pile at the property on 8th Ave.
Paulson was next with his monthly report. Paulson passed out his report showing weekly, monthly and yearly to date numbers. Paulson had the proposal for putting in CO2 and Nitrogen tanks that could be filled by truck. The council felt the new system would be safer and approved the agreement with AirGas. Paulson informed the council that the first Sunday’s business was good and the second one was a break even.
The council went over the truck parking ordinance and moved to amend Ordinance #61 to adopt changes discussed at the public hearing.
Clerk Louks had only one item for the council’s consideration. The council approved the engagement letter to hire Hill, Larson to do the city’s 2012 audit.
Mayor Engel began his report with the job descriptions. Engel and the council went over the different job descriptions adding and removing items as needed. The council then approved the job descriptions as revised. Mayor Engel then asked the council to approve the holiday appreciation cards for city employees.
The council approved the purchase of a street sweeping broom for the price of $1,100.
The next meeting of the Ellendale City Council will be on December 27th at 7:30 p.m.