ELLIS CITY COUNCIL
September 3, 2019
PUBLIC HEARING – COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT – WATERLINE IMPROVEMENT PROJECT
Mayor David McDaniel opened the public hearing regarding the waterline improvement project at 7:02 p.m. Justine Benoit, Northwest Kansas Planning and Development Commission, reviewed the four waterlines to be included in the project. Waterline A includes Baughman (10th to 11th Street) and 10th Street (Baughman to Cottonwood Street); Waterline B includes Dorrance Street (11th to 12th Street); Waterline C includes Monroe Street (10th to 15th Street); and Waterline D includes 15th Street (Washington to Monroe Street). The total estimated project cost is $824,225, which would be split 50% with CDBG funds. Therefore, the City’s portion would be $412,112. The Community Development Block Grant program is a competitive grant rated on various factors. The application deadline is September 27th and awards are announced January 17, 2020.
Mayor David McDaniel then asked if anyone in the audience had questions regarding the project. Water Operator John Leiker expressed concerns over the increased size of the new lines. The City is already flushing lines regularly to maintain balanced chemical levels. Mr. Leiker feels with larger lines it could be more difficult to stay in compliance with regulations. There being no further public comments, Mayor David McDaniel closed the public hearing at 7:12 p.m.
CALL TO ORDER
Mayor David McDaniel called the regular meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. Present were Council members Holly Aschenbrenner, Steve Ferland, Jolene Niernberger, and Bob Redger. Also present were Public Works Water Operator John Leiker, City Clerk Amy Burton, Police Chief Taft Yates, and City Attorney Olavee Raub. Council members Bret Andries and Martin LaBarge were absent.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
AMENDMENTS TO AGENDA
Consideration of the bids for concrete for the Campground Expansion Project will be added to the agenda under Unfinished Business.
Kellie Crnkovich, James Bell, Justine Benoit, Tammy Leiker, Tricia Pritchett, and Glen Keller.
Council member Holly Aschenbrenner moved to approve the consent agenda containing the Minutes from the Regular Meeting on August 19, 2019 and Bills Ordinance #2076. Council member Bob Redger seconded the motion. The Council approved the consent agenda 4-0.
Glen Keller, Tourism Committee, thanked Council for their support with the new Ellis brochure. Almost 1,900 of the brochures have been distributed throughout Kansas.
PRESENTATIONS OF AWARDS, PROCLAMATIONS, REQUESTS & PETITIONS (HEARINGS)
Justine Benoit, Northwest Kansas Planning and Development Commission, continued by presenting the necessary documents for approval to include in the Community Development Block Grant application. Council member Holly Aschenbrenner moved to approve Resolution No. 560 certifying the City’s legal authority to apply for the Community Development Block Grant program and dedicating $412,112 towards the project. Council member Bob Redger seconded the motion. The motion carried 4-0.
Council member Bob Redger moved to approve Resolution No. 561 assuring the Department of Commerce the City will provide adequate funds for the maintenance and operation of the waterline improvements. Council member Holly Aschenbrenner seconded the motion. The motion carried 4-0.
Council member Holly Aschenbrenner moved to approve the contract with Northwest Kansas Planning and Development Commission for grant administrative consulting services in the amount of $20,750.00. Council member Steve Ferland seconded the motion. The motion carried 4-0. The contract is contingent on the City being awarded CDBG funds.
Council member Steve Ferland moved to authorize Mayor David McDaniel to sign the necessary Community Development Block Grant application documents. Council member Bob Redger seconded the motion. The motion carried 4-0.
Capital Improvement: Acquisition
Council once again considered bids for replacement or repair of the overhead shop door. The bid to replace the springs, shaft, roller, track and hinges on the existing door is $2,850, while a complete new door system is only $235 more. Council member Bob Redger moved to accept the bid from C & E Doors, LLC in the amount of $3,085 for a new overhead shop door system, with funds to come from the Capital Improvement fund. Council member Jolene Niernberger seconded the motion. The motion carried 4-0.
General Government: Financial
City Attorney Olavee Raub reported that Brent Jaynes, Leisure Real Estate Advisors, has agreed to the City’s counter proposal for a tax abatement schedule for any potential buyers of the Days Inn hotel. Ms. Raub reviewed the proposed resolution detailing the terms of tax abatement. The resolution only shows the City’s commitment to pursuing tax abatement once a contract for sale has been received. The tax abatement would be contingent on Ellis County and USD 388 approving the abatement as well. For purposes of discussion, Council member Jolene Niernberger moved to approve Resolution No. 562 proposing pursuit of tax abatement upon sale of the Days Inn hotel. Council member Bob Redger seconded the motion. Upon a call for discussion, Council expressed the importance of having a hotel in town. Neighboring towns have hotels and the City needs an attractive place for travelers to stop to increase tourism. In addition, the hotel brings in $25,000 - $30,000 per year in transient guest tax. However, Council would like the resolution modified to clarify that the building must remain a hotel in order to receive tax abatement. Upon a call for the vote, the motion failed 0-4, in order for Ms. Raub to modify the resolution.
Campground: Special Project
At the August 19, 2019 Council meeting, Council approved a bid for concrete from Hays Ready-Mix contingent on the vendor including a statement on the bid guaranteeing ASTM standards. The vendor submitted the requested statement guaranteeing the quality standards; however, the cost increased $309 to do so. Therefore, the August 19th motion is null and void. Council reconsidered the two bids from Hays Ready-Mix and Ellis County Concrete. Council member Holly Aschenbrenner moved to accept the low bid from Hays Ready-Mix in the amount of $10,248.50 for concrete for the Campground Expansion Project. Council member Steve Ferland seconded the motion. The motion carried 4-0.
Special Machinery: Acquisition
Council reviewed bids for a root grapple to help with debris removal. During the last several storms, the City was able to borrow the County’s grapple and it helped tremendously with cleanup efforts. Council determined the grapple is not an essential piece of equipment at this time, but would like to see the item included for consideration with the next budget. The City will continue to borrow the County’s grapple in the meantime, if available.
REPORTS FROM CITY OFFICIALS
Water Operator John Leiker presented the Comparative Water Report for the period June 10th – July 10th. Mr. Leiker explained the percentage of water accountable for can be difficult to pinpoint. Several variables are present including undetermined leaks and the regular flushing of hydrants.
Mr. Leiker reported the Department worked on six water leaks in 10 days. The Campground Expansion Project slowed down during storm cleanup efforts, but is back on track. Mr. Leiker stated it has been challenging for the Parks Department to keep up with mowing due to all of the rain.
Police Chief Taft Yates presented the Monthly Activity Report for August and the September Staff Calendar. Officer Kolas continues to do well at the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Center.
City Clerk Amy Burton thanked Tammy Leiker for painting the Swimming Pool Project’s financial progress board. The Board is currently on display in the Clerk’s office.
Ms. Burton presented the draft minutes from the Planning Commission/Board of Zoning Appeals Special Meeting with City Planning Consultant John Riggs. Mr. Riggs suggested the City re-implement the percentage of lot covered provision into the zoning codes. City Attorney Olavee Raub explained why the provision is necessary.
Mayor Update and Announcements
Mayor David McDaniel reported that he and Council member Jolene Niernberger attended a League of Kansas Municipalities meeting regarding tax appraisals.
Council member Steve Ferland moved and Council member Holly Aschenbrenner seconded a motion to adjourn the meeting. The motion carried 4-0. The meeting adjourned at 8:16 p.m.