Irrigon City Council Meeting
January 20, 2015 – 6:00 PM
Irrigon City Hall – 500 NE Main Avenue
1. Call to Order and Pledge of Allegiance – 6:03 pm
Council members present: Christine Sorenson, Sam Heath, Daren Strong, Ken Matlack, Michelle Hagen, Margaret Anderson, Martin Brown.
Staff present: City Manager Aaron Palmquist, City Clerk Jessi Hoffman and Public Works Director Keith White.
Audience: Joe Theisen, Deputy Neubert, Ray & Renee Couchman, Tera Tolar, Jeanette Meyers, Tamera Reid, and Janet Cooley.
2. Oath of Office – CouncilorsMayor Heath stated at this time we will have the Oath of Officers and then proceed with the roll call.City Manager Palmquist read the Oath of Officer to Michelle Hagen, Margaret Anderson and newly elected Councilor Martin Brown. Mayor Heath welcomed Martin and the two returning councilors Michelle & Margaret.
3. Roll Call
Manager Palmquist took roll call.
4. Mayor’s Comments & Voting of Mayor, and Mayor Pro-Tem
Mayor Heath also stated that we have Mr. Arnold Joe Theisen in our audience, who until November was on our City Council. He had plans to retire from it this January but did so a couple of months early. Joe has seen a lot happen during his 14 years serving on Council. Just a few items noted of his contributions are:
- He helped in the selections of 5 city mgrs.
- Drafted a new city charter for approval by the council and voters
- Successfully lobbied for a state of the art wastewater treatment system. The stinky pond system was a “no-go” with Joe!
- Developed a proposal for a city logo that would commemorate Irrigon’s location at the crossroads of two of our nation’s most historic pioneer trails.
- Supported the building of a new city shop and city hall.
- Prepared an employee suggestion program
- Supported the skate and children’s park
- Supported deeding land for library construction for shared community space and upgrading public works equipment.
Mayor Heath stated that she would like to address new and returning councilors. We thank you for volunteering your time away from your activities and family to be a part of the Irrigon City Council. Along with sacrificing your time to be here, come the fiduciary responsibilities to the members of our community. There may and will be times for tough and unpopular decisions for the betterment of the community as we think toward to the future. We cannot wait for situations to arise and react in a crisis mode. It is helpful to do your homework prior to meetings and have a clear understanding of all agenda items. Ask the tough questions. Decisions made on this Council’s watch may not take effect right away, but will affect our children and their children. There is no crystal ball and there may be many factors on the table when tough decisions need to be made. Sometimes it seems like grueling work in the moment, but it is always so much fun to see the fruits from previous decisions or see something that is going south on us and recommend improvements. Again, we thank you for being a public servant and for being up to this task.
He helped in the selections of 5 city mgrs.
Drafted a new city charter for approval by the council and voters
Successfully lobbied for a state of the art wastewater treatment system. The stinky pond system was a “no-go” with Joe!
Developed a proposal for a city logo that would commemorate Irrigon’s location at the crossroads of two of our nation’s most historic pioneer trails.
Supported the building of a new city shop and city hall.
Prepared an employee suggestion program
Supported the skate and children’s park
Supported deeding land for library construction for shared community space and upgrading public works equipment.
Mayor Heath stated that it has been a pleasure serving with Joe and if you (Joe) will step forward we would like to commemorate your service to the City Council with a small token of appreciation.
Mayor Heath stated that February is fast approaching and the time for appointing new budget committee members, so stay tuned! We encourage citizen involvement. For council, Budgeting Basics is in the Jan 2015 Local focus beginning on page 26.
Mayor Heath stated it has been a great privilege and honor to have served as the city’s mayor as I finished out the previous mayor’s term. As a one-year newbie councilor it was a total immersing of city government. I am grateful to all the support I have received in the community, from the council, city manager, and staff.
Mayor Heath stated for those unfamiliar with the process it is located in Chapter VII of the City Charter, Section 25, and I summarize, that mayor selection is in odd-numbered years, serves for 2 years, and is selected from the council members by at least 4 votes. A candidate must have served for 6 months as a counselor immediately prior to the selection.Mayor Heath stated, as meeting facilitator is there a motion for Mayor. Councilor Anderson made a motion to retain Sam Heath as Mayor. Councilor Sorenson seconded that motion. Mayor asked City Manager Palmquist to hand out ballots. City Manager counted the ballots and stated that Sam Heath was elected Mayor.
Mayor Heath asked if there was a motion for Mayor Pro-Tem selection Councilor Anderson made a motion to retain Christine Sorenson as Mayor Pro-Tem. Councilor Hagen seconded the motion. Mayor asked City Manager Palmquist to hand out ballots. City Manager counted the ballots and stated that Christine Sorenson was elected to be Mayor Pro-Tem. City Manager Palmquist swore in Sam Heath as City Manager. Palmquist also swore in Christine Sorenson as Mayor Pro-Tem.
5. Consent Agenda
Mayor Heath asked council for a motion to approve the Consent Agenda.
It was moved by Councilor HagenSorenson and seconded by Councilor Sorenson to approve and accept the Consent Agenda of all items as presented.
a. Approval of Minutes – December 16, 2014
b. Staff Reports
i. Public Works
ii. Finance Officer
iii. City Manager
c. Accounts Payable
d. Morrow County Sheriff Report
The motion passed unanimously.
6. Public Comment
Mayor Heath asked if there was any public comment at this time?
There was no public comment at that time.
7. Cemetery District – Excavation and Backhoe Update
City Manager Palmquist stated that back in about 2001 a process started for the City of Irrigon get out of the opening and closing of graves. In 2014 the Council accepted the sale of City of Irrigon backhoe to the Cemetery District. Palmquist stated that he will be sending a letter to the Cemetery district on behalf of the City of Irrigon that the Cemetery needs to step to the plate and start doing their own opening and closing of graves. In doing this the Cemetery has the opportunity to gain income and the City of Irrigon will stop loosing money
8. *Morrow County Fair 2015 – Sponsorship
Mayor Heath stated that The Morrow County Fair Board has sent out their letters regarding sponsorship for this year. As noted in the City Managers report this is worthy to be recognized as part of the regional community and it helps the Morrow County Fair Board with their expenses. Heath asked City Manager Palmquist if he had anything to add. Manager Palmquist stated that what was done last year where an ad was taken out to present Irrigon.
Mayor Heath asked if there was a motion to proceed with supporting an ad with Morrow County Fair Board with the Irrigon Chamber sharing half the cost. Councilor Sorenson made a motion to proceed with supporting an ad with Morrow County Fair Board with the Irrigon Chamber sharing half the cost. Councilor Anderson seconded the motion. Motion Passed
9. OTLD Update
Mayor Heath stated since the last meeting, the OTLD met on January 7, 2015 at their Boardman Library. After the OTLD exec session, the OTLD board reported they have formed a three member negotiation committee to modify the IGA. The newspaper article reported by George Plaven said, “The library district’s committee hopes to have a counter proposal ready for review by their next board meeting on Wednesday January 21, 2015.” Heath stated at this time all items received will be addressed as they become available transparently before the public. Heath asked if the City Manager had anything to report.
City Manager Palmquist stated for the public’s awareness is the City of Irrigon has been advised by our legal counsel that we have already submitted an IGA, and not to form a three person committee so we can maintain transparency before the public. OTLD will submit something back and we are waiting for that. The discussion and proses will be in open session and transparent unless it’s with are legal counsel to go to exec session.
10. Items for Future Council Meetings
- Fee Schedule
- Three Code Ordinances and Public Hearings (Safe Routes, Definitions, Zoning Amendments)-March2015
- Needs and Issues (N&I) Committee
- Budget Resolution-Accepting N&I Resource-February 2015
- Morrow County Comp Plan Update Process-March 2015
Adjournment Next Regular Meeting Date – February 17, 2015
The meeting was adjourned at 6:40 p.m.