Minutes from City Council Meeting March 15, 2016

 

Minutes

Irrigon City Council Meeting

March 15, 2016 – 6:00 PM

Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue

             

 

         

 

  1. Call to Order/Pledge/Roll Call – 6:06 pm

 

Council members present: Sam Heath, Michelle Hagen, Martin Brown, Margaret Anderson. Ken Matlack and Daren Strong had an excused absence.

 

Staff present: Finance Officer Amanda Ferguson, City Clerk Jessi Hoffman and Public Works Director Keith White. City Manager Aaron Palmquist had an excused absence.

 

Audience: Thalassa Kinney, Barb Huwe, and M. Shade.

  1. Mayor’s Comments

 

Mayor Heath stated that just a note to a couple of things in our correspondence, we have

  • Sanitary Disposal is hosting their Spring Clean-up week April 1-7, 2016
  • There is a notice for Steve Myren’s retirement party on March 19, 2016 from 1-4 pm at the Riverfront Center in Boardman.
  • The Knight’s Pride Booster Club held their annual event this past Saturday on   March 12, 2016.
  • In other matters, Pastor Rick Yardley contacted Heath last week to let her know he was asking the church board for approval to donate paper and ink to the City so flyers can be printed so the community can be notified about the proposed rate increases. Yardley mentioned he could also provide some volunteers to circulate the flyers. Heath stated to Yardley that she would let the Council know. Heath said that last Wednesday Yardley notified her that the church board gave their approval.

 

  1. *Consent Agenda

 

a. Approval of Minutes – February 16, 2016

b. City Manager Report and Staff Updates

c. Accounts Payable

d. Morrow County Sheriff Report

e. Correspondence

 

Councilor Hagen made the motion to approve the Consent Agenda with the IJCS bill of $127.00 set aside. Councilor Anderson seconded the motion.

 

Heath asked if there was any discussion. There was no discussion.

 

Heath asked Finance Officer Ferguson to take a vote to approve the Consent Agenda minus the IJCS bill. Vote passed unanimously.

 

Heath asked for a separate vote on the IJCS bill and if there were any abstentions?

 

Councilor Brown abstained because he is an employee of IJCS.

 

Councilor Hagen made a motion to approve the IJCS bill for $127.00. Councilor Anderson seconded the motion.

 

Finance Officer Ferguson took a vote. Vote passed unanimously.

 

  1. Public CommentMaximum 3 minutes/person. Maximum 30 Minutes allotted time for public

                            comments.

 

There was no Public Comment at that time.

 

  1. *Resolution 16-01 Adjust Accounts Receivables on Utility Accounts

 

Heath explained that there were a couple of accounts that are uncollectable as you can see in

Resolution 16-01. Staff needs permission to adjust the whole amount of $38.68 from accounts recievable.

 

Councilor Anderson made the motion to adopt Resolution 16-01 to adjust accounts receivable to reflect the inactive accounts. Councilor Brown seconded the motion.

 

Mayor Heath asked Finance Officer Ferguson if she knew how long those accounts have been opened or been unresolved?

 

Ferguson responded that one is from 2006 and the other is from 2007.

 

Heath asked what kind of steps the City takes in order to resolve accounts like these.

 

Ferguson stated that usually utility accounts go as a lien against the property, but these accounts were not included on the lien search from the title company so there is no way really to collect on them. The City’s auditor has recommended to bring these items in front of Council to be able to write them off.

 

Heath stated that with no further discussion would Finance Officer Ferguson take a vote. Vote passed unanimously.

 

6 *Resolution 16-02 Extending Workers’ Compensation to Volunteers – Annual Requirement

 

Mayor Heath said that each year there is a similar resolution extending worker’s compensation coverage to volunteers of the City of Irrigon. It is reviewed annually and amended as necessary.

 

Councilor Anderson made a motion to adopt Resolution 16-02 extending Worker’s Compensation to the City of Irrigon Volunteers as presented. Councilor Hagen seconded the motion.

 

Heath stated with no further discussion would Finance Officer Ferguson take a vote. Vote passed unanimously.

 

 

 

 

7. Items for Future Council Meetings

  • User Fees Update – April 2016
  • If I were Mayor Presentation – April 2016
  • Enhancement Applications – TBD

 

Councilor Hagen motioned to adjourn meeting.

 

The meeting was adjourned at 6:20 p.m.

 

 

Adjournment            Next Regular Meeting Date – April 19, 2016

 

Submitted by/

Jessi Hoffman

City Clerk

 

 

April 5, 2016 Planning Commission Meeting – Cancelled

 Irrigon Planning Commission

Agenda

April 5, 2016

Irrigon City Hall

500 NE Main Avenue

 

 

The March Planning Commission is cancelled. No meeting this month.

 

 

 

Next Regular Meeting: City of Irrigon Planning Commission – May 3, 2016

All meetings begin at 6:00 p.m.

 

Agenda for City Council Meeting March 15, 2016

AGENDA

Irrigon City Council Meeting

March 15, 2016 – 6.00 PM

Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue

 

 

  1. Call to Order/Pledge/ Roll Call

 

  1. Mayor’s Comments

 

  1. *Consent Agenda (The Consent Agenda allows the Council to approve all items together without discussion or individual motions. Councilors can request an item be removed for later in the meeting and discussion)

a. Approval of Minutes –February 16, 2016

b.  City Manager Report and Staff Updates

c.  Accounts Payable

d.  Morrow County Sheriff Report

e.  Correspondence

 

  1. Public Comment – Maximum 3 minutes/person. Maximum 30 minutes allotted time for public comments. This is the time provided for individuals wishing to address the Council, at their discretion. Sign-up on the clipboard required.

 

  1. * Resolution 16-01 Adjust Accounts Receivables on Utility Accounts

 

  1. * Resolution 16-02 Extending Workers’ Compensation to Volunteers – Annual Requirement

 

  1. Items for Future Council Meetings
    • User Fees Update – April 2016
    • If I were Mayor Presentation – April 2016
    • Enhancement Applications – Summer 2016

 

Adjournment

 

Next Regular Meeting Date – April 19, 2016

Click here for March 15, 2016 City Council Packet

* Denotes a motion and vote required.

 

If you would like to attend and need assistance, please phone Irrigon City Hall at 1.541.922.3047 or TTY relay 1.800.735.2900 The facility is accessible for people with disabilities.  Records Requests:  The public may request documents for review, as legally applicable.  A written request shall be submitted with a response in 5 business days of the time and cost for such public document request.  City will proceed upon written notice to proceed or disregard the request.

 

 

A neighborly community providing safe services, developing innovative partnerships, focusing on quality and life giving opportunities

An Equal Opportunity Organization

February 16, 2016 City Council Meeting Minutes

Minutes

Irrigon City Council Meeting

February 16, 2016 – 6:00 PM

Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue

         

 

  1. Call to Order/Pledge/Roll Call – 6:05 pm

Council members present: Sam Heath, Michelle Hagen, Martin Brown, Daren Strong, Margaret Anderson. Ken Matlack had an excused absence.

Staff present: City Manager Aaron Palmquist, City Clerk Jessi Hoffman and Public Works Director Keith White.

Audience: Janet Pace, Pastor Rick Yardley, George Plaven with the East Oregonian, Kenneth Proctor, Samie Griffin, Stan Anderson, Linda Anderson, Derek Harrington, and Julie Dick.

  1. Mayor’s Comments

Mayor Heath stated that with the donations generously given last month for Christine Sorenson, a pen set was engraved and will be given to Andy Sorenson to honor her service to the Council.

Heath said that she attended the LOC Small City Meeting in Athena on January 20th, and heard from DEQ and IFA representatives in regards to their willingness to help small Cities with Grants. This came after the City of Irrigon was denied a grant for a Facility Plan for the 40% of the homes needing to switch to the conventional system.

On February 4, 2016 City Manager and I met with IFA, JUB Engineering, and Scott Fairly with Regional Solutions from the Pendleton Office. This was held in follow-up to our Facility Plan Grant denial. The meeting helped us understand their acceptance criteria and why we did not qualify.

Heath explained the Chamber had asked her to give a brief summary of things happening with the City, and the City Council, at their meeting last week. Each Councilor was introduced and then a recap on fiscal challenges, opportunities, and day to day operations was given.

On February 11, 2016, Heath and two other Chamber Members from Irrigon attended the Umatilla Electric Cooperative new operations center open house in Boardman. Heath said that it will serve the area well.

On February 15, 2016, there was a Town Hall Meeting at the Sage Center with Senator Ron Wyden also recognizing Terry Tallman for his service to Morrow County as Judge. The Senator answered questions concerning the Hammond situation, bringing land to local and state control, education, the Canadian Water Treaty, fixing Medicare, voter apathy, the spotted owl and sage grouse, the Dream Act, Hanford, John Day, and the second amendment. Heath said she also learned that the Federal Government owns 53% of our state.

  1. *Consent Agenda

 

a.  Approval of Minutes – January 19, 2016 and February 4, 2016

b.  City Manager Report and Staff Updates

c.  Accounts Payable

d.  Morrow County Sheriff Report

e.  Correspondence

            Councilor Hagen made the motion to approve the Consent Agenda as is. Councilor Brown seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

  1. Public CommentMaximum 3 minutes/person. Maximum 30 Minutes allotted time for public comments.

Mayor Heath called for Janet Pace, and Janet stated she was just here visiting.

Heath called for Rick Yardley, and Rick stated that he was here to listen.

Heath called for Kenneth Proctor, and Ken stated he was here to listen.

Heath called for Samie Griffin. Samie Griffin of 315 NE Fifth St. stated that she had a couple questions for the Council. Griffin asked the Council when the last time any of you drove down Fifth St.? She said that Fifth is the worst road in town. There are three pot holes measuring 28×25 and 3 inches deep, 29×27 and 3 inches deep and 25×14 are the biggest. The sides of the street are bad, crumbling, or just missing as well as the rest of the road. Griffin stated that you want growth for this town? As a perspective buyer this is what they would say, “Good there is three schools, churches, post office, library, and city water and sewer. City water and sewer is high priced. Next the prospective buyers would start to drive the streets they would think that this is a nice little town, but the roads are in pretty bad shape and quite a few residents with old cars by the road and some places need a good clean up.” She stated that it would be a big decision for prospective buyers after touring the town. Second, Griffin asked when her street was going to be repaired, and she does not mean pot hole repair she means the whole street needs to be completely re-done.

The Public Works Director Keith White responded to Samie’s question with “I agree with you 100%, but to answer the question of “when is your road going to get done” right know it is Council policy to not pave streets until conventional water and sewer are installed under that street.” He also explained that way, the street only has to be torn up once. The City does not have money in the budget to even consider paving a street.

Griffin stated that there are at least two home owners on her street that are the longest tax payers in this City. Samie asked what would happen if we all decided not to pay taxes? Someone would be after us then wouldn’t they?

Manager Palmquist stated that the taxes that you pay do not cover for the streets totally. How street funds come in is from gas taxes through the State and it’s very limited. The City transfers property taxes from the general fund to the streets so we can do the minimum that is done now. He stated that two weeks ago there was a public hearing looking at a street user fee. This is about $3.00 a month so the City can build up reserves so we can begin to move forward. He explained that the Council has taken a policy to wait on streets until the sewer and water are done. Otherwise what happens is you put down a road, then cut it up, and they go bad a lot faster. The cost is approximately $75,000.00 to pave one City block. He also stated that the City historically has not been visionary to look down the road to set money aside in reserves. He asked how do we bring more balance? One way would be to tighten up and we don’t borrow any more money, but we have to turn this around. It’s not going to happen overnight cause the problem was not made overnight

Griffin stated that you have some old lady like her that maintains all sides of her property and you have someone step in one of those pot holes and they break a leg, it is going to be a big law suit to the City.
Rick Yardley asked to speak, and stated that he just looked up his tax forms and under general government under Irrigon he states that he is paying $290.91 a year and bonds to Irrigon he is paying $346.00 a year. Rick said that is $636.91that he is paying a year. If you divide it by 12 that is $53.07 a month that he is paying. Rick asked what does that go towards every month?
Palmquist stated that the Bonds are for water and sewer loans. The money that you pay for bonds is dedicated for that it cannot go for anything else. Palmquist said the other get spread out between General fund, Streets, and Parks.
Yardley stated so part of my taxes is for streets.
Palmquist stated that it is for repairs on streets such as pot holes which do not last. Even if you took a 100% of your 290.91 it will not even do your frontage.
Yardley stated that he understands that we have some dark corner streets and stuff like that, and the City is trying to find a way to light them. Yardley asked if there was a problem with taking the Disneyland Street (Columbia Street) and capping off a couple of those lights and putting them other places where the City needs them.
Palmquist stated that the problem is that they are LED and there really cheap but they are on a meter. To put just one street light in it is $2,000.00 and to maintain that light it is $15.00 dollars a month.
Yardley asked if it would be $2000.00 to move some of the lights on Columbia Street.
Palmquist stated you can’t move those lights. The big street lights are ran by UEC and they are directly wired in.
Yardley stated that six million dollars was paid for that road way and street lights  and no one lives on it.
Palmquist stated that the City did not pay for that, it was paid by Stimulus.

 

Yardley stated that six million dollars would have paved every road in Irrigon.
Palmquist stated that he completely agrees with Yardley. He also said for the record that the money was supposed to initially go for the Division Street project and ODOT shot it down and wanted First Street and Columbia Street done.
Yardley stated that the other thing he wanted to talk about was getting notice out to the public. He said that he understands that postage costs a lot, but someone gave him an idea for the City to come out with a monthly newsletter and when public works is out reading meters ever month, why not have them tape a newsletter to everyone’s door. It would not cost the City a lot of money just to print it.
Palmquist stated that it is a lot more than just paying for it to be printed. Palmquist said that this is something he is looking in to, but it takes up a lot of time to do a newsletter and time is money.
Councilor Hagen stated that several years ago she was doing a newsletter and the reason it stopped is because of the expense of the printing.
Yardley interjected Councilor Hagen and asked wouldn’t it be adventitious for the Council to hear from the entire home owners rather than just a handful of people?
Councilor Hagen stated that yes, of course. She also said she was disappointed when the newsletter was cancelled.
Yardley interjected Councilor Hagen and stated that the prices just keep going up and up, and you’re going to get a whole house of people that are really upset. He stated that the Council needs to get the word out to the people.
Julie Dick from the Irrigon Chamber of Commerce gave a suggestion of a newsletter that is sent out by email. She stated that this is how the Chamber started out and it did not cost them a dime to do it that way.
Councilor Hagen stated that it was a great idea but in the past she had tried that and found that a lot of people did not have email so Hagen was unable to pursue the newsletter by email.
Mayor Heath stated that a reader board would be nice.
Stan Anderson of 1250 E. California Ave stated that he and his wife have lived in Irrigon for about 10 years now and finally bought a home here as well. He said it’s a lovely little home, but the street is still gravel and we still have a septic tank. The road is usually pretty nice except in the summer when it is dusty. The problem he has is when public works grades the road they are leaving a big hump at the end of his driveway. He said it is like driving over a speed bump in to your own driveway.  He has spoken to both the public works and the City Manager regarding this problem. He also said that he has been in construction for over 30 years and the road is not being graded correctly and something needs to be done.
Linda Anderson of 1250 E. California Ave stated that from California to Division and all the way up to Thomas does not have sewer. She said they have septic and they don’t have paved roads nor do they have street lights and they live at the far end of California. She also said that for the past three nights someone has been messing around their place and they have had their alarm go off and they have had to go outside with their gun and see what’s going on. Anderson said that street lights would be really nice. We pay the same taxes as everyone else and we don’t have sewer or lights. So why are we going to have to keep paying for it if we don’t have those services?
Mayor Heath stated that she pays the bond fees and she is not on the conventional sewer, but I know it is helping that goal for the future because she wants to live in the City and she wants to have those services. Heath asked where everyone was on the February 4, 2016 when the Public Hearing for all this was going on.

  1. Mayor Pro Tem Election-Irrigon City Charter, Chapter II, Section 9

Mayor Heath stated what the responsibilities are for Mayor Pro Tem.

Heath asked the Council for any nominations.

Councilor Anderson nominated Michelle Hagen for Pro Tem.

Councilor Brown nominated Daren Strong for Pro Tem.

City Manager Palmquist gave out ballots to each Council member. Council Members gave ballots back and Palmquist took a tally and Daren Strong had 3 votes and Michelle Hagen had 1.

Mayor Heath said thank you and the New Pro Tem can be sworn in.

City Manager Palmquist sworn in Daren Strong as the new Pro Tem.

6. Police Patrol Services Contract

Mayor Heath stated that she had City Manager Palmquist put this on the agenda as we near the time to begin negotiating. Heath would like Council to appoint Margaret Anderson, Michelle Hagen, and herself to serve as a committee to help with this before it’s final pass before Council. Heath said that she would have Palmquist set up a time that works best for each of them and then proceed. Also in your packet you will notice some information on what is currently in place and what is being proposed. Heath asked the Council if you see anything on the draft that you would like to address to please make note of it and turn it in no later than February 29, 2016 to the City Manager.

*Sewer Facility Plan Financing Option (s)

Heath stated that Manager Palmquist is asking for the Council’s direction on seeking other avenues to fund a facility plan. Heath reminded the Council that the City was turned down for the IFA Grant.

Palmquist spoke about what was in the packet to the Council and that he is trying to find other options to fund the sewer projects. He stated to do projects you have to have a plan to do them. Previous projects have not had a plan in place to say how to move and what are the right place to do things, and a plan that looks into the future from a financial stand point. He explained that you also need a plan to get funding. He said there are two ways to get funding. You can either get a grant or you can borrow. Historically the City has borrowed. Palmquist stated that he is currently looking for free money.

Palmquist said as of 2014 the City of Irrigon became block grant eligible for a three and half million dollar grant. To get that the City has to have a plan in place. Once we have a plan we want to move on with some more conversions.

Yardley asked who makes this road map that Palmquist talked about, and who puts it together?

Palmquist responded that a certified public engineer does the work.

Yardley asked if the engineer lives in Irrigon.

Palmquist stated that there is not an engineer around here. The City’s engineer comes out of La Grande.

Heath stated that we were just looking at a motion to allow the City Manager to seek an alternative route to fund a facility plan.

Councilor Hagen made the motion to allow the City Manager to gather further information for possible Facility Plan funding with DEQ and bring back at a future Council meeting for decision-making. Councilor Strong seconded the motion.

Councilor Strong asked if each of the options provide the same outcome. Is there one that will do less than the other? Strong also asked what are the risks with any of these options if any?

Palmquist responded that the risk is you continue to prolong the problem that the City has. Another potential problem if DEQ won’t forgive, but they say they will extend. That just extends a note. Palmquist said that ever grant dollar is better than borrowed dollar.

Councilor Brown stated so what we are looking at is $175,000.00 is that what you are saying?

Palmquist responded that it is $150,000.00. He said what could be done is borrow $130,000.00 and then I would go back to IFA and get that $20,000.00 in grant money. So the plan would be a $150,000.00 with an inner fund loan of $130,000.00.

Councilor Brown stated that if it is done on the existing loan and it is extended 5 years saying that DEQ is not going to forgive the 5 years it makes a 20 year loan in to a 25 year loan which would be based on $950,000.00 rather that $800,000.00. Which means you’re going to pay a lot more in interest rather than just getting a loan for $150,000.00?

Palmquist said to get that loan right now at $130,000.00 that’s raising peoples rate another $15.00 a month. He said they are already paying for it now it would just extend it longer.

Yardley asked if there were any projects that the City is planning on doing in the next couple of years.

Palmquist stated not at this time.

Yardley asked if the City was stopping all projects trying to let the funds build up a little bit? He stated that when he talked about it a couple of years ago the City still had to pay a couple hundred thousand dollars to get the free money.

Palmquist responded that the City is not going to do that. So as an example this last year under the enhancement money we spent about $13,000.00 on the walk path that was extended in front of AC Houghton. That did not cost the City anything the money was from CREZ.

Yardley stated that he just wanted to say that he understands that the City is in a real financial bind. He said that he was in to see Palmquist to talk to him earlier today, and he asked for a copy of a notice that was sent out regarding renewal of dog licenses. Yardley stated that he does not recall if the rate change was included in the renewal letter that he received, but when he asked for a copy of the letter the receptionist stated that there was not one in his file. He said it is not that his dog’s license went from $10.00 to $20.00. That is a 100% rate increase from one year to the next. Yardley stated that he was told it hadn’t been raised in years, but you know if the City is going to go after the people with these rate increases on all kinds of different things. He said he’s got to be honest with you, you’re going to make a lot of people upset if you do not let them know ahead of time of the changes being made.

Mayor Heath stated that with no further discussion will Manager Palmquist take a vote. Vote passed unanimously.

*Christmas Lights

Mayor Heath stated that everyone should have seen the City Manager’s note on the Christmas Lights in his report. Last year’s selection was too costly and what you have before you are on sale and within a reasonable range.

Councilor Strong made the motion to authorize staff to purchase the best available ornaments, and while remaining in the designated dollar amount. Councilor Hagen seconded the motion.

Councilor Strong asked where the money for the ornaments is coming from.

Palmquist stated that the money is coming from the CREZ enhancement fund. Public works will be researching size because of safety.

Mayor Heath asked Palmquist to take a vote if there was no further discussion. Vote passed unanimously.

9. *Irrigon Enhancement Money Set-Aside

Mayor Heath stated that she moves to set aside $50,000.00 of the CREZ II provided enhancement dollars to be used for Community wide enhancement on approved properties across the 97844 zip code area as discussed. Heath said that Staff will develop policy and procedures to be brought back for City Council decision-making.

Manager Palmquist said that there is an amended motion and an amended agenda for the public. On Friday the CREZ board gave an additional $50,000.00 for our housing program. He said that the City had requested $140,000.00 trying to think of how we are going to do this charting new territory. The CREZ board said that they are going to authorize a $140,000.00 for the Irrigon zip code. He said so before the Council tonight is a proposal to take $50,000.00 of that money and create a public enhancement across are whole City. He said there has to be some policy and procedure on that, and in your packets there is a list A and a list B.

Palmquist said list A for example up to a $1000.00 with no match for nuisance abatement. The B list for example would be up to $2000.00 with a 25% match so that if someone wanted $2000.00 they would have to have $500.00 to do some TLC on their property and look at how they can improve their yards and paint there house to be able to enhance the community.

Yardley asked what it would do to enhance the home owner’s projects to apply the $50,000.00 to people’s water bill to green up there yards. Yardley said he is talking about the people that are on fixed income who can’t afford high water bills.

Palmquist stated that this is not how this money is supposed to be used. The CREZ board sets a parameter on how the money is to be used.

Julie Dick asked about signage coming to the City such as the City has had two State championships.

Palmquist stated that Staff is looking into that and researching that option.

Linda Anderson asked when there was going to be sidewalks put in on Division Street, since a lot of the kids walk down that street.

Palmquist responded that the City has made application for that and it’s for the year 2021. The City has been through the screen list and has made the 150 % list.

Councilor Anderson asked when does Staff think the $50,000.00 will be available.

Palmquist said the $50,000.00 will be available after the April Council meeting.

10. Items for Future Council Meetings

  • User Fees Update – April 2016
  • If I were Mayor Presentation – April 2016
  • Enhancement Applications – TBD

 

Councilor Hagen motioned to adjourn meeting.

 

The meeting was adjourned at 7:12 p.m.

 

 

Adjournment            Next Regular Meeting Date – March 15, 2016

 

Submitted by/

Jessi Hoffman

City Clerk

 

February 16, 2016 City Council Meeting Agenda

AGENDA

Irrigon City Council Meeting

February 16, 2016 – 6.00 PM

Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue

                               “Amended”

 

 

  1. Call to Order/Pledge/ Roll Call

 

  1. Mayor’s Comments

 

  1. *Consent Agenda (The Consent Agenda allows the Council to approve all items together without discussion or individual motions. Councilors can request an item be removed for later in the meeting and discussion)

a.  Approval of Minutes – January 19, 2016 and February 4, 2016

b.  City Manager Report and Staff Updates

c.  Accounts Payable

d.  Morrow County Sheriff Report

e.  Correspondence

 

  1. Public Comment – Maximum 3 minutes/person. Maximum 30 minutes allotted time for public comments. This is the time provided for individuals wishing to address the Council, at their discretion. Sign-up on the clipboard required.

 

  1. *Mayor Pro Tem Election – Irrigon City Charter, Chapter II, Section 9

 

  1. Police Patrol Services Contract

 

  1. *Sewer Facility Plan Financing Option (s)

 

  1. *Christmas Lights

 

  1. *Irrigon Enhancement Money Set-Aside

 

  1. Items for Future Council Meetings
    • User Fees Update – April 2016
    • If I were Mayor Presentation – April 2016
    • Enhancement Applications – TBD

 

Adjournment

Information Packet for 2-16-16 City Council Meeting

Next Regular Meeting Date – March 15, 2016

 

* Denotes a motion and vote required.

 

If you would like to attend and need assistance, please phone Irrigon City Hall at 1.541.922.3047 or TTY relay 1.800.735.2900 The facility is accessible for people with disabilities.  Records Requests:  The public may request documents for review, as legally applicable.  A written request shall be submitted with a response in 5 business days of the time and cost for such public document request.  City will proceed upon written notice to proceed or disregard the re

February 4, 2016 Special City Council Meeting Minutes

 

Minutes

Irrigon City Special Meeting

 February 04, 2016 – 6:00 PM

Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue

 

  1. Call to Order Special Meeting/Pledge/Roll Call – 6:05 pm

 

Council members present: Sam Heath, Ken Matlack, Michelle Hagen, Martin Brown, and Margaret Anderson. Daren Strong had an excused absence.

 

Staff present: City Manager Aaron Palmquist.

 

Audience: Janet Cooley, Tammy Reid, Linda Neumann, Ruth Bostick, Stephen Munkers, Luke Maynard, Phyllis Danielson, Laurrie Blackman, Janet Pace, Thalassa Kinney, and Jan Maynard.

 

  1. Public Hearing on Fiscal Challenges and Opportunities

 

Mayor Heath said good evening and welcomed everyone and thanked them for taking the time to be there. Heath reviewed why Council has asked the public for their thoughts on several issues facing the City Council.

 

-In 2014, City Manager Palmquist brought to the attention of the Council that the City’s fiscal health was in poor condition. Our debt to income ratio was 70/30. The Council elected to have an outside accounting firm look over our situation and put forth their recommendations to get the City back on stable ground.

 

-Several things were identified. Of those, the City was allowing property owners to shut off services in the winter months while vacationing elsewhere, and pay nothing towards loans/bonds. Secondly, it was advised that mobile homes in the parks be included to pay as a separate ERU for bond fees. From there the City had to basically halt any maintenance it was doing and function at a diminished capacity. And not to mention, Staff has gone without raises for over 2 years.

 

-Meanwhile, the City Manager continues to sound the drums for the growing future needs and failing infrastructure. The Council in turn directed the City Manager to submit further ideas. Show us the good, bad, and the ugly. For starters he came up with a $10.00 plan. I am not convinced $10.00 is going to get us out of the woods, but again it is a start.

 

-Let’s discuss future needs for street paving or repair. Cities all around are hurting from declining revenue from the gas tax due to more fuel efficient vehicles. Cities are being faced with tough decisions such as where do they come up with money to pay for it without cutting services? Heath said gravel roads is not the answer and does not invite people to live here. The cost to pave 600 ft. is $ 75,000. City Manager has recommended $3.00 of the $10.00 be set aside for street funds. At $3.00 the City would generate approximately $29,700 a year. It would take the City three years to save enough for paving 600ft, and then we would begin again.

 

-Next would be the growing demand for street lighting. People are not happy with the current situation which leaves a lot of areas unlit thus encouraging unwanted, unhealthy night time activity in dark areas. City Manager has recommended a $2.00 street light fee which would generate about $19,800.00 per year to help light up Irrigon’s dark places. Again, the City would not be able to reach all their lighting goals the first year, but again it is a start.

 

-Third, the Council has elected to bring code enforcement back in house beginning in the new fiscal year. The savings here will offset the remaining 20 hours of contracted patrol time. The City has been paying yearly approximately $81,000 for 20 patrol hours and 20 code enforcement hours per week. On top of that another $9000 for a vehicle each year. Last year during contract negotiations, the City was not able to meet the increase that were staring us in the face for this continued service. The Sheriff’s Office graciously understood the City’s dilemma at the time and gave us a pass on the increases. This allowed us to keep what we had. However, these contracted hours are in addition to what each tax payer inside City Limits is paying for. In order to get this City back to very firm and solid fiscal health, the City Manager has also recommended the Council consider applying the last $5.00 of the $10.00 for a police user fee to offset the remaining cost of the 20 hour per week, if indeed this is what is agreed upon in the new fiscal year.

 

-Lastly, the City Manager took a suggestion from the street and was asked to investigate what it would cost the City to create a police district. City Manager attests this would have a negative impact to City finances and reverse the direction of the course we have set. Palmquist strongly recommended to the Council to not give this any consideration.

 

She asked Palmquist on Monday, how far into the future does he plan for? Palmquist replied, “30 years Ma’am.” Heath said that she thought to herself, now that is vision!” Previous Councils and Communities do not have the challenges that we are faced with here today. Heath said that the City does not need more loans, but we do need forward thinkers. It is our time right now to plan for the future generations of Irrigon. After much discussion, the Council wanted the public to weigh in on these items and submit any other ideas along with your solutions to the Council at this time to help us improve our fiscal health.

 

Public Hearing opened at 6:12 pm

 

Janet Cooley stated that she is here to speak in favor to maybe not all but some of the proposals that have been made. She feels that if we are going to move forward, we are going to have to learn that we need to pay for these things. Cooley stated that we want them, but it just is not going to happen without some increases somewhere. Cooley said she has pot holes in front of her home as many of the rest of you that she would like to see filled. She doesn’t see any other solutions without raising some fees. A small user fee is a lot easier than trying to pass bond levies. If we want to see this town move forward she thinks that this is what we have to do.

 

Tammy Reid stated that she is sort of in favor of the fees. She is curious to as whether or not it will apply to each utility account outside of the city limits. Reid asked if the out of City limits accounts will be charged the same. She also asked if it will apply to each and every utility account, because there are lots of people that have multiple accounts. For example the park district has four accounts, and that is an extra $480.00 a year that comes out of our small budget that we would be looking at. Reid stated that as a bookkeeper she does not care for that, but she does agree that we do need to move forward. She felt that the extra $5.00 for the police coverage was only going to put us in more debt. She believes that we will be paying out more than what we are taking in. Reid said as far as the street fund fee, she disagrees with that, cause she knows that they are not going to do

First Street yet because her sewer is not done yet.

 

Steven Munkers stated as far as the police coverage goes there are several funds that are involved with the police department, such as search and rescue. He stated that there are a lot of volunteers not involved with that now because they discontinued it. He also said we need more volunteers to help and that would cut cost instead of funds going to hiring another officer. He suggested getting more volunteers for fixing the streets, would help cost.

 

Luke Maynard stated that he doesn’t disagree, but wanted to cycle back and think of history. Manager Palmquist has done a good job, but when the rates decreased one of his biggest push to Manager Palmquist was don’t do it. Maynard said don’t decrease the rates because everyone was unhappy were the rates where, but if you should take what has been saved and put that in a reserve their wasn’t a mechanism to do that. It is easier to lower rates than it is to raise rates. Maynard stated that as of March 1, 2016 the rates of other companies such as UEC will be going up as well. Plus add the Morrow County taxes increasing because the City got re-assessed for taxes. Maynard said you add all these increases and it’s really going to hurt people. Maynard asked if there was any way to carry it over a two year period to get to the $10.00 increase.

 

Mayor Heath said that she appreciated everyone for being there and letting Council know what is on your mind and what you’re thinking. She stated that we want to hear from you and just a reminder there are Council Meeting every third Tuesday of every Month.

 

Public Hearing closed at 6:22 pm.

 

Adjournment

 

Councilor Anderson motioned to adjourn meeting.

 

The meeting was adjourned at 6:23 p.m.

 

 

 

Submitted by/

Jessi Hoffman

City Clerk

 

 

February 4, 2016 Special City Council Meeting Agenda

 

Irrigon City Council

Special Meeting

February 4, 2016 – 6.00 PM

Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue

 

 

 

  1. Call to Order/Pledge/ Roll Call

 

 

  1. Public Hearing on Fiscal Challenges and Opportunities

 

 

Adjournment

 Information Packet for 2-4-16 Special Meeting

 

If you would like to attend and need assistance, please phone Irrigon City Hall at 1.541.922.3047 or TTY relay 1.800.735.2900 The facility is accessible for people with disabilities.  Records Requests:  The public may request documents for review, as legally applicable.  A written request shall be submitted with a response in 5 business days of the time and cost for such public document request.  City will proceed upon written notice to proceed or disregard the request.

January 19, 2016 City Council Meeting Minutes

 

Irrigon City Council Meeting Minutes

January 19, 2016 – 6.00 PM

Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue

   

 

 Joint Work Session- City Council and Irrigon Planning Commission

                                               “Irrigon Development Code”

 

Called to Order/Roll Call – 6:01

 

Mayor Heath greeted and thanked the Council and Planning Commission for being here. Heath said before we begin and many of you already know, but Councilor and Pro Tem Christine Sorenson passed on. Christine has been a true rock to this Council and a great friend to many. Heath said it is with a heavy heart that she asked that we take a moment of silence to honor Christine this evening. Heath stated that we will resume with the Pledge of Allegiance.

 

Planning Commissioners present: Bill Kelly, Alan Carnahan, and Luke Maynard. Bill Earle had an excused absence.

 

Commissioner Kelly stated that he would like to acknowledge the resignation of Commissioner Carroll.

 

Mayor Heath opened the City Council Meeting, and City Manager Palmquist took roll call at 6:06 pm.

 

Mayor Heath stated that the City Manager will review the progress on the Irrigon Development Code. Heath also said that everyone should have a copy before them, and if you have questions and/or comments please write them down and submit them to the City Manager in writing. The meeting will wrap at 6:30pm with a motion to adjourn the Joint Work Session between Council and Planning Commission. Heath asked City Manager Palmquist to proceed.

 

City Manager Palmquist explained that the realigning and cleaning up of Irrigon’s Code has been an on-going process. Over the last two years the City Council has made some edits in adding to the code and cleaning up various aspects that are out of date or too cumbersome to administer.

 

Palmquist said that Title X (Development Code) is the most current process taking place to improve public usability and simplify Irrigon’s process maintaining current requirements and focus for Irrigon. In November 2015 the City Council approved working with a planning contractor who has experience in expediting the process.

 

Palmquist stated that attached is a “draft” work in progress to keep the City Council and Planning Commission apprised of what is taking place. We are proceeding at a good pace but have encountered some challenges with renumbering and placing items in the most appropriate location within the code.

 

Palmquist said the bottom line is to be able to repeal our current development code (Title X) and replace it with a clean and user friendly document. The following are some examples of changes that will take place.

 

  1. The new code will move from two residential and two commercial zones to one residential and one commercial zone.

 

  1. Over three pages of definitions will be eliminated. Those eliminated are normal and customary items within common language and land use practices.

 

  1. A new zoning map will be presented for adoption that will clearly note the approved district/zones.

 

  1. Graphics currently in the code will either be removed, if self-explanatory, or placed in a separate appendix for reference use only.

 

  1. Article 3D (public Facilities) will be removed from the Development Code and placed under Title VI (Health and Safety) and then noted in Title X that public utilities are not a land use item.

 

  1. Enforcement (1B) will be moved to Title I (Administration) creating a new chapter and better noting that enforcement will be more clearly defined for the “whole” code book, not just under the development code portion.

 

  1. An example of streamlining is also noted under the Commercial and Light Industrial Zones of what is allowed. In the commercial zone it will say that “any commercial use subject to community design standards” noted under 10-3. This makes it easier for what type of business can come here. There still will be exceptions/exclusions, such as no marijuana facilities per prior Council adoption.

 

  1. Lastly there are numerous wording and paragraph changes/deletions that are duplications and/or verboseness.

 

 

Manager Palmquist stated the changes presented provide for improved use by all individuals and brings clarity to a very cumbersome document while still maintaining the standards and ideals that are Irrigon. Simple is the form and process taking place and how do we get to yes.

 

Staff asked for each body to review and compare with our current code and make recommendations of what you would like Irrigon to have within the Code. It is desirable that we have something available in early spring to hold the required public hearings. Again, this is a draft and this current document is intended to keep everyone aware of the progress in which is being undertaken.

 

Councilor Matlack asked Manager Palmquist if he had any projected non uses that could be commercial or any lawful business?

 

Manager Palmquist said there is a type that could come into Irrigon by law and we have exceptions for such a business type but we cannot exclude it.

 

Commissioner Kelly asked if the City has a book with all the ORS in it.

 

Palmquist stated that the City does not have a book, but anyone can find it online.

 

Palmquist gave an example of how Commissioner Kelly found this in the Code on page 16 at on the top of the page were it says Household. The definition reads one or more persons related by blood, marriage, legal option or guardianship. Plus not more than five additional persons who live together in one dwelling unit or one or more handicap persons as defined by the better housing amendment act in 1988. Palmquist asked everyone “what does that mean?”

 

Councilor Anderson said it means that more than ten people can live in a single family dwelling.

 

Commissioner Kelly stated that he would like to try to stay away from multiple separate families living in one household.

 

Palmquist stated that is why we need to clean up and streamline the Code. He explained that Leslie Hauer has been very helpful on not letting things get out of hand and making sure things stay black and white and not vague.

 

Palmquist stated that chapters 4, 5, 6 are yet to come.

 

Councilor Matlack stated that on the document that he looked at there are several things on there along with definitions and other stuff that has been brought up. Matlack said he wants to know when is the time that all of it will be brought up to be discussed specificly that if there to be changed or if they need to be changed or not changed.

 

Palmquist stated that they will not be discussed. They will be repealed and a replaced. We are not going to go line by line. There is just too much to do it that way. What is going to happen is you will be given a full document once everything is all together. That’s why you need to go through the packet that has been given, make notes and turn them back in.

 

Matlack said how do you know what needs to be put in if we don’t have any input on what needs to be put in.

 

Palmquist stated that you need to look at it now.

 

Mayor Heath stated that Council and Planning are going to have to go through this entire packet.

 

Matlack said, so we are to make note of our suggestions and give it to the Manager to be inputted.

 

Commissioner Kelly stated that yes, on the whole packet that has been provided.

 

Matlack asked when will the Manager need it by.

 

Palmquist stated by February 1, 2016

 

Councilor Hagen moved to adjourn the joint work season. Commissioner Maynard seconded the motion.

 

Joint work season closed at 6:40 pm

 

 

1.  Call to Order Regular Council Meeting/Pledge/Roll Call – 6:44 pm

 

Council members present: Sam Heath, Ken Matlack, Michelle Hagen, Martin Brown, Daren Strong, and Margaret Anderson

 

Staff present: City Manager Aaron Palmquist, City Clerk Jessi Hoffman and Public Works Director Keith White.

 

Audience: Erin Stocker

 

Mayor’s Comments

Mayor Heath stated there were five Councilors who responded to the Doodle Poll by January 4th as requested. The meeting has been scheduled for February 4, 2016 at 6pm for the Public Hearing.

Mayor Heath stated that UEC is holding an Open House on February 11, 2016 from noon to 1:30 pm at their new Boardman Operations Center. Lunch and tours will be provided. The address is 400 NE Eldrige Drive.

 

3. *Consent Agenda              

a. Approval of Minutes – December 15, 2015

b. City Manager Report Staff Updates

c. Accounts Payable

d. Morrow County Sheriff Report

e. Correspondence             

Mayor Heath asked if there was a motion to approve the consent agenda as is or with any items removed.

Councilor Hagen made the motion to approve the Consent Agenda adding Foster Carroll’s resignation to it. Councilor Anderson seconded the motion.

Councilor Matlack stated that he wanted to discuss page five of the minutes from December. Matlack said that he wanted a comment that he had made put in the December minutes. Councilor Matlack’s comment he wanted put in December’s minutes is that you’re taking the difference that is being saved, increasing the bill, and taking that and putting all that in to reserve. Matlack also stated, “I do not think it is right and transparent for us (City Council) to transfer savings from the bond/loans to the basic utility rate charge without public approval.Mayor Heath stated that we had our discussion and we will make that adjustment so will the City Manager take a vote. Vote passed unanimously.

 

4.  Public CommentMaximum 3 minutes/person. Maximum 30 Minutes allotted time for public comments.         

Erin Stocker of the Irrigon Chamber of Commerce stated that she would like to say thank you for your support.

5.  Mayor Pro Tem Election-Irrigon City Charter, Chapter II, Section 9

Mayor Heath asked the Council to postpone the Mayor Pro Tem Election until next month’s meeting.  All Council Members agreed to postpone the Mayor Pro Tem Election until next month’s meeting.

 

6.  Executive Session-ORS 192.690 (2) (A) to consider the employment of a public officer, employee, staff member or individual agent.

Council went into Executive Session at 7:08pm.                              Executive Session closed at 9:04pm.

*City Manager Contract

Mayor Heath asked for a motion on accepting the City Manager Contract as presented with corrections noted.

Councilor Anderson made a motion to accept the City Manager Contract as presented with corrections noted. Councilor Brown seconded the motion.

Councilor Matlack stated that he did not support the five year contract, and he also did not support six month severance. Matlack said he agreed with everything thing except the five year contract and the 6 month severance and that he wanted Manager Palmquist to know that.

Councilor Hagen stated that she was not in agreeance to the five year contract, but did agree with the six month severance.

Mayor Heath asked for a vote on accepting the City Manager Contract as presented with corrections noted.

Vote passed 3 to 2. Councilor Matlack no because he did not like the five years and the severance portion, Councilor Hagen voted no as she would have preferred a three year contract but was OK with the severance portion.

8. *Property Lease with Java Junkies

Mayor Heath stated that the City Manager has explained in his report the unfortunate need for the Taco Cart to discontinue their lease. Heath said that the lease before you in your packet is the same, but the names have been changed to reflect the new “lessee.”

 

Mayor Heath asked if there is a motion to acknowledge the discontinuation of the old lease with the Taco Cart and accept the new lease with Java Junkies for said property located at 520 US 730.

 

Councilor Hagen made the motion to acknowledge the discontinuation of the old lease with the Taco Cart and accept the new lease with Java Junkies for said property located at 520 US 730. Councilor Anderson seconded the motion.

 

Councilor Strong called for a vote.

 

Vote passed unanimously.

 

*Budget Committee Members and Setting Budget Calendar

 

Mayor Heath stated in your handout for the 2016-17 Budget Calendar is a timeline for your review.

Heath said it is desirable to have an equal amount of people from the public as we have serving on the Council. All Council members are appointed and at this time from the City Public we have:

Andrew Hermanns

Alan Carnahan

Janet Cooley

Luke Maynard

And Roberta Hewitt

 

Heath asked if there was a motion to accept the 2016-17 Budget Calendar and all Budget Committee Members as presented.

 

Councilor Hagen made the motion to accept the 2016-17 Budget Calendar and all Budget Committee Members as presented. Councilor Brown seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

 

10. Items for Future Council Meetings

  • Police Patrol Services Contract-February 2016
  • User Fees-March 2016
  • If I were Mayor Presentation-April 2016

Councilor Hagen motioned to adjourn meeting. The meeting was adjourned at 9.16 p.m. 

 

 

Adjournment          Next Regular Meeting Date – February 16, 2016

 

Submitted by/

Jessi Hoffman

 

January 19, 2016 City Council Meeting Agenda

AGENDA

Irrigon City Council Meeting

January 19, 2016 – 6.00 PM

Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue

 

 

 6:00pm – 6:30pm Joint Work Session – City Council and Irrigon Planning Commission “ Irrigon Development Code”

 

City Council Regular Session         6:30p.m.

 

  1. Call to Order/Pledge/ Roll Call

 

  1. Mayor’s Comments

 

  1. *Consent Agenda (The Consent Agenda allows the Council to approve all items together without discussion or individual motions. Councilors can request an item be removed for later in the meeting and discussion)

a. Approval of Minutes – December 15, 2015

b. City Manager Report and Staff Updates

c. Accounts Payable

d. Morrow County Sheriff Report

e. Correspondence

 

  1. Public Comment – Maximum 3 minutes/person. Maximum 30 minutes allotted time for public comments. This is the time provided for individuals wishing to address the Council, at their discretion. Sign-up on the clipboard required.

 

  1. Mayor Pro Tem Election – Irrigon City Charter, Chapter II, Section 9

 

  1. Executive Session – ORS 192.690 (2) (a) To consider the employment of a public officer, employee, staff member or individual agent.

 

  1. * City Manager Contract

 

  1. *Property Lease with Java Junkies

 

  1. *Budget Committee Members and Setting Budget Calendar

 

  1. Items for Future Council Meetings
    • Police Patrol Services Contract – February 2016
    • User Fees – March 2016
    • If I were Mayor Presentation – April 2016

 

Adjournment

 

Next Regular Meeting Date – February 16, 2016

 

* Denotes a motion and vote required.

Click here for City Council Meeting Information Packet for 1/19/2016

 

If you would like to attend and need assistance, please phone Irrigon City Hall at 1.541.922.3047 or TTY relay 1.800.735.2900 The facility is accessible for people with disabilities.  Records Requests:  The public may request documents for review, as legally applicable.  A written request shall be submitted with a response in 5 business days of the time and cost for such public document request.  City will proceed upon written notice to proceed or disregard the request.

 

A neighborly community providing safe services, developing innovative partnerships, focusing on quality and life giving opportunities

An Equal Opportunity Organization

 

December 15, 2015 City Council Meeting Minutes

Minutes

Irrigon City Council Meeting

 December 15, 2015 – 6:00 PM

Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue

 

 

 

  1. Called to Order/Pledge/Roll Call – 6:03 pm

 

Council members present: Sam Heath, Ken Matlack, Michelle Hagen, Martin Brown, Daren Strong, Christine Sorenson. Excused absence Margaret Anderson

 

Staff present: City Manager Aaron Palmquist, City Clerk Jessi Hoffman and Public Works Director Keith White.

 

Audience: None

 

  1. Mayor’s Comments

 

Mayor Heath stated that the annual Christmas Tree Lighting had added pizazz this year with Santa arriving for everyone in a horse drawn carriage provided by the Cooks (Bryan and Carli). This was an added touch provided by the Irrigon Watermelon Festival Committee. Our thanks to them.

 

Heath said that there was some discussion in a previous meeting regarding the installation of signs prohibiting Jake brakes within the City of Irrigon. City Manager Palmquist had a conversation with Tyrel Burns from ODOT on the matter to which he responded, “District 12 does not support the installation of signs prohibiting the use of unmuffled engine brakes as they are an important safety feature on trucks. ODOT has tried installing “unmuffled Engine Brakes Prohibited” signs in the past but they have not made a noticeable difference in truck driver behavior. It is also difficult to enforce the law that prohibits Unmuffled Engine Braking as it may be very difficult to know if an engine brake is muffled or not as they pass by.” He then goes on to outline the criteria that must be met in order for signs to be considered. Heath stated that she also believed the City Manager mentioned to her that the City of Umatilla has a sign that states, “No Trucks in residential areas.” The City Manager will be investigating how they got to a yes on those. If the Council would like a copy please see the City Manager.

 

Heath stated that lastly she would like to comment on the Morrow County Sheriff’s reporting of Patrol and Code Hours. Heath said I do appreciate the hours noted in our community on the report. The way she understood the contract, the City has is in ADDITION for added patrol and code enforcement in the community outside of normal county operations. It is a fact that North County has issues and it is great to see reports that have documented calls and such, but simply where is it documented that Officer John patrolled in Irrigon for two hours on the morning of, and Officer Jill has three hours of patrol logged, and so on, for the week to equal the twenty hours per the contract, per week. Some of the reports she has seen are very detailed and Heath thought it may be easy to complicate and even harder to separate out what overlaps as a city or county response. Heath asked Manager Palmquist, when he has time, could he explore with our contracted services at least one but maybe a couple of ways to get the information simplified or something that is clear for the Council and her.

 

Councilor Matlack provided a response for Morrow County Sheriff’s Office asking the Mayor what it is she is actually looking for to assist the City.

 

Mayor Heath stated that as she understands it the contract is for hours of patrol in the community. Heath said that she doesn’t really see where an Officer has logged the normal operation hours separate from contracted operation hours.

 

Councilor Matlack provided another response for Morrow County Sheriff’s Office stating that the way they are trying to do the contract hours is to put the contract hours in the City’s annual plan. Councilor Matlack asked what the City would like to do for the City’s best interest. He also said that the City wanted half of their contracted hours in Code enforcement and the other half in patrol coverage were the City thought needed more patrol because that was the most important thing that the City wanted to do for what they paid for. That was the purpose of the contract and that is what you are paying for. The other hours where just to document the hours Morrow County Sheriff’s Office spends in the City Limits of Irrigon. Councilor Matlack stated that he is not real inclined to spend a lot of time and effort in to having someone keep track of all hours of every Officer on exactly what they were patrolling. Matlack said it is possible to do that and it might be interesting to know, but he has not seen a whole lot of interest at the City Council meetings to spend a lot of time on the police report. So he did not think it was that much of an interest to the Council to look at the activities the Officers were doing. Except to say when Officers go out, come in, what the call was for, and dates of service, but that wasn’t really the purpose and never was the purpose. It was to let the know City what the City is getting for hours of service.

 

Palmquist stated that he remembers some conversations that Councilor Matlack and he had about being creative on this, such as Neighborhood Watch, or creative programs such as SRO’s at schools, for example.

 

Mayor Heath went on with Mayor’s Comment by asking Manager Palmquist if he would find out what programs may be available in Morrow County to strengthen the relationship between the police and our community? Heath also asked if there can be a citizen police academy so members of our community can learn and have a better appreciation and understanding the realities of Morrow County Sheriff’s Office.

 

Councilor Matlack interjected and stated that the Morrow County Sheriff’s Office does have the ability for a citizen academy, but there just has not been much interest in the past. Matlack stated that it would be a good thing to put out again and the Sheriff’s Office would be happy to put together a citizen academy.

 

Mayor Heath, directed her last question to Staff, where would we go to see an outline or graphs of some sort so we can track what is trending in our City and County? Heath said it may be useful for our Council to understand increases and/or decreases in crime types and what is happening to see those declines.

 

Councilor Matlack interjected again that the Sheriff’s Office puts out an annual report that he would have thought that the City would have received or at least the library to receive. Matlack stated that the Sheriff’s Office tries to do the report every year and what has happened is there is booklet that lists 2011, 2012, and 2013.

 

Mayor Heath asked Councilor Matlack if he could bring a couple of those in to the City Hall and give them to the City Manager that would be great.

 

  1. *Consent Agenda

 

a. Approval of Minutes – November 17, 2015

b. City Manager Report Staff Updates

c. Accounts Payable

d. Morrow County Sheriff Report

e. Correspondence

 

Mayor Heath asked the Council if there was a motion to approve the Consent Agenda.

 

Councilor Matlack made the motion to approve the Consent Agenda, pulling the November Minutes for discussion and IJCS bill from accounts payable as presented. Councilor Sorenson seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

 

Mayor Heath stated that the November minutes and the IJCS bill have been removed for separate voting. Is there anyone here that is abstained from voting? Councilor Brown stated that he abstained from voting for the fact that he works for IJCS.

 

Councilor Hagen made a motion to approve the IJCS bill as presented. Councilor Matlack seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously with Councilor Brown abstained.

 

Councilor Hagen made the motion to approve the November minutes. Councilor Brown seconded the motion.

 

Councilor Matlack wanted to know if and when the Council voted to bring the Code Enforcement in house or if the Code Enforcement is still in the talking stage.

 

Mayor Heath stated that we went over all of that last month, and there were 3 things at the very end that were voted on. Heath said that the Code enforcement was voted on to be brought back in house by Council and is not part of Public Hearing.

 

Councilor Matlack asked what the vote was.

 

Manager Palmquist stated that the vote was 3 to 2. Councilor Anderson and Councilor Matlack voted no.

 

Councilor Matlack asked if that was listed in the notes.

 

Palmquist stated it was right above number eight in the packet.

 

Councilor Hagen asked Councilor Matlack are you asking if the Council voted to pass that Code Enforcement comes in house?

 

Councilor Matlack stated yes.

 

Manager Palmquist stated that the vote was Code Enforcement was brought in house, work with Morrow County Sheriff’s Office on the contract language, and then there where the User Fee’s that where going to the Public Hearing.

 

Mayor Heath re-read the Staff recommendations that follow the fiscal opportunities.

1. Bring the Code Enforcement back in-house effective July, 2016 and begin working on new contract language for the 20 hour per week Patrol Service.

2.  Provide public opportunity to gather information for decision-making on the Street Maintenance, Street Light, and Police Services user fees.

3. Provide the public the gathered information on the potential creation of a Law Enforcement District and let the public solicit a champion for future decision-making.

 

Heath stated again, Staff does not recommend the RV Park Street fee for extended stays as noted above. While the City of Irrigon has major fiscal challenges we also have the great opportunity to set a positive fiscal glide path for long-term stability with plans and resources.

 

Councilor Brown stated that Staff also recommended not going forward with the Law Enforcement District because it was costly.

 

Councilor Strong made an amended motion to accept the amended November minutes as corrected in placing the three items from the November 2015 Staff Report in the minutes. Councilor Hagen seconded the motion. Amendment passed unanimously.

 

Mayor Heath stated now back to the Original Motion of the November minutes which already has a first and second and just needs a vote. Original Motion passed unanimously.

 

  1. Public Comment – Maximum 3 minutes/person. Maximum 30 Minutes allotted time for public comments.

 

No Public comment.

 

  1. *Setting Public Hearing for Community Input on Fiscal Opportunities

 

Mayor Heath stated that last month in our Council Meeting there was a motion and vote to hold a Public Meeting on December 10, 2015 so the public could weigh in and bring forth thoughts and suggestions regarding fiscal challenges the City is facing. Sometime after that a few attendance challenges popped up so she decided to cancel the Public Meeting for December. Heath recommends that in the future for setting such meetings the Council should ask Staff to arrange such meetings after coordinating with everyone’s schedule to find the best possible time.

 

Mayor Heath asked the Council if there was a motion to have Staff set an acceptable time and date, in this particular case a Public Hearing for this topic in the New Year, and for such future meetings.

 

Councilor Sorenson made the motion to have Staff set an acceptable time and date, for in this particular case a Public Hearing for this topic in the New Year, and for such future meetings. Councilor Brown seconded the motion.

 

Councilor Matlack asked if this is about the shareholders meeting that someone had mentioned to be held in January.

 

Mayor Heath replied that the Council was going to have it on December 10, 2015, but Councilor Matlack called and said that there was going to be a conflict for him even though Councilor Matlack voted no on the meeting, and there were other Councilors that where going to have troubles making the meeting. Heath stated that she cancelled the meeting, but the way it is supposed to be is when you take a vote on something like that she can’t just go back and un-vote it. Heath said in the future if the Council wants to make a meeting like that we can direct Manager Palmquist to get with all of the Councilors to find the best possible time for everyone.

Councilor Matlack stated that he should have not even called. If he couldn’t make it he should have not attended. Matlack stated that there is no sense of one person having everything shut down and the meeting should have moved forward as planned.

 

Manager Palmquist stated there is a couple of things, first one being when you do a hard vote in a Council that is a public forum and when you try to change it or try to vote via email that is violation of public meeting law. Second thing so Council can be aware of is he is going to send some stuff out and it is called a Doodle pole. It is a Calendar that will be emailed to all the Councilors.

 

Mayor Heath stated that we have a motion and a second and with no further discussion Manager Palmquist will you take a vote. Motion passed unanimously.

 

  1. *Resolution 15-13 “Fee Schedule and Utility Rates”

 

Mayor Heath stated that Manager Palmquist prepared a memorandum dated December 4th that you will find in you packet. Heath asked Palmquist if he would review the changes for the Council so that after the motion they may deliberate.

 

Manager Palmquist stated that the shaded areas on the Fee Schedule and Utility Rates are new. Palmquist went over the Fee Schedule and Utility Rates and showed the Council what was new and what was historically approved. Palmquist gave examples, such as if someone wants there sewer tank pumped more than what is scheduled and required with the public works, there will be a fee for that service. Palmquist stated that nothing takes effect until July 1, 2016.

 

Manager Palmquist also stated that on the next two pages the numbers that are to the right of the table are the new proposed amounts. Under water and sewer you will see a proposed increase of $1.67 which will make the basic bill an even $100.00. Palmquist said that the extra would go straight to reserve funds which the City desperately needs in the water and sewer department.

 

Palmquist said to the Council that the City has received a fine from DEQ for violating our permit. The first fine is for $1800.00 and then it escalates from there. Palmquist said he is trying to be creative so we can keep and meet our permit limits because the City did not receive the Block Grant for $175,000.00 for planning.

 

Mayor Heath asked if there was a motion to approve Resolution 15-13 as presented.

 

Councilor Sorenson made a motion to approve Resolution 15-13 as presented. Councilor Strong seconded the motion. (Original motion)

 

Councilor Hagan asked if the cubic feet of water will change from what it is now.

 

Manager Palmquist stated that no, the 1336 cubic feet will stay the same.

 

Councilor Matlack asked what the point of the increase is. What is the net gain?

 

Manager Palmquist stated that one, the public is tired of us borrowing and charging for loans, and the other thing is if you look at basic sewer bond, at $16.02, we don’t need that much because we have grown. For example instead of having 10 people paying why not spread it around to 15, but we are not lowering the whole bill we are moving it over to the basic charge so it can be put in reserve. The increase is only going to be $1.67. Palmquist also said when loans go away you roll that instead of hitting the public hard with major increases like some of the neighboring Cities are doing.

 

 

Councilor Matlack said so you’re taking the difference that is being saved, increasing the bill, and taking that and putting all that in to reserve.

 

Manager Palmquist stated yes, and the only increase is going to be a $1.67 for water and sewer collectively.

 

Councilor Brown asked why the basic utility rate did not change for the RV Parks. Brown stated that he does not understand whether its demand or permanent living why it should make a difference in the rate. It should be the same as single family home basic rate. Brown said if you have two people living in that RV Park they don’t use any less water and sewage than he does as a single family home.

 

Palmquist stated that he would tend to agree, but the ERU is based on State Statue Processes. Palmquist also said that the State has come in and said that Cities can no longer mandate or dictate the stays in RV Parks.

 

Councilor Hagen made the motion to amend the typo on RV Sub-Division user loan fee from $95.23 and correct it to be $9.52.Councilor Strong seconded the motion.

 

The Council deliberated giving statements and examples of why they do and/or do not support the rate increase.

 

Councilor Brown called for a five minute break at 7:46pm.

 

Mayor Heath resumed meeting at 7:54pm

 

Councilor Hagen withdrew her motion, Councilor Strong agreed.

 

Councilor Brown made amendment #1 to charge all extended RV Stays at 1.0 ERU and limited/vacant RV Stays to remain at 0.5 ERU. Councilor Hagen seconded the motion.

 

Councilor Hagen made amendment #2 motion remove the RV Sub-Division .64 ERU rate and charge all Single Family RV Sub-Division at 1.0 ERU. Councilor Strong seconded the motion.

 

Being no deliberation Councilor Hagen called for a vote.

 

Amendment #1 passed unanimously.

 

Amendment #2 passed unanimously.

 

Original motion.

 

Manager Palmquist stated that however you vote and if any of it passes there is going to be heat from the public. City Staff will be doing all it can to get it out to the public so the public has a better understanding.

 

Councilor Brown stated that he understands that there will be heat from this and that it will affect some, but he thinks that if the people of Irrigon are correctly made aware of whom this affects the people of Irrigon will be for it.

 

Mayor Heath stated that there is a motion and a second does anyone want to call for a vote, to the original motion?

 

Councilor Matlack stated that going back to his original concern with this increase, which Councilor Brown explained it would be equitably and fair, and if you had the RV Parks doing this would there be a offset in cost that would be comparable to the $1.67 increase.

 

Manager Palmquist stated it is not comparable.

 

Councilor Strong called for a vote.

 

Original motion passed 4 to 1. Councilor Matlack voted no

 

  1. Items for Future Council Meetings

*Development Code Amendments – January 2016 (Joint Work Session with Planning Commission 1-5-16)

*Strategic Planning and Goal Setting – TBD

*If I were Mayor Presentation-April 2016

 

 

Councilor Sorenson motioned to adjourn meeting. Councilor Hagen seconded the motion.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:19 p.m.

Adjournment           Next Regular Meeting Date – January 19, 2016

 

Submitted by/

Jessi Hoffman

City Clerk