City Council plows through detailed agenda
The Cherokee City Council Tuesday awarded the proposed Gillette Park Trail Project contract to Ten Point Construction of Denison, for $87,385.27.
The letting for the project by the Iowa Department of Transportation was on February 20. Existing grants successfully applied for will pay for 80-percent of the project's cost.
The trail is part of the total beautification and renovation of Gillette Park which surrounds the new Bacon Aquatics Center now nearing completion as scheduled.
The Council also reviewed preliminary plans for the East Main Street water line project and authorized engineers to proceed with the final specifications. The project, estimated at $100,000, will be bid in the nest two months, according to City Clerk Deb Taylor.
A request from the Veteran's Affairs office for handicap parking space on North 4th Street adjacent to the VA's new location was also approved by the Council. Two handicap parking spaces will be located on North 4th, one on each side of the alley north of the VA office.
The Council reviewed information regarding a request from the City of Quimby to call for an election for local option sales tax. Quimby's tax will expire on 1-1-08 and in order for the issue to go to election, there must be a motion or motions of governing bodies within the county that represent at least half of the county population.
As a partner in requesting the election, the City of Cherokee would also put a question on the ballot to extend the tax. As Cherokee's tax doesn't expire until 12-11-11, the wording could include a statement indicating the expected effective date would be 1-1-12 for Cherokee.
The City of Cherokee doesn't have to partner with Quimby, as it could partner with the unincorporated area of the county; however, since Cherokee, Quimby, and the unincorporated area are the only entities with sunset dates, Cherokee may not be able to call for an election in 2010 when it is ready to do so, because Cherokee would need Quimby or the unincorporated area to partner to satisfy the 50-percent requirement.
The Council also reviewed a preliminary fee schedule for Bacon Aquatics Center but tabled any action until the next regularly scheduled meeting March 13.
The first reading of an ordinance regulating adult-oriented establishments also was approved and is patterned after a similar ordinance in effect in Sioux Center.
A request from Verizon for a lease to place equipment on the city's north water tower also was considered, with the city now waiting for drawings on the positioning of the antennas. The project also would include construction of a 12X30 equipment building on the site. The city would realize to-be-determined revenue by leasing to Verizon.
The Council also authorized the purchase of additional water meters as part of the ongoing meter change program. The new meters will cost $4,820.65.
In other action, the Council approved a 28-E agreement with the county's 911 Board, and appointed councilman Jim peck as city representative to the 911 Board. Mayor Dennis Henrich is the alternate.
Councilman Mick Mallory added an item to the agenda to review department head pay increases that were approved at the last council meeting. Mallory said the Council authorized paying some department heads more than others because they are required to maintain certain licenses for their positions.
Mallory also said he feels City Clerk Deb Taylor was passed over and should receive extra compensation for extra duties assumed since City Administrator Ron Strickland resigned on 4-25-06. Councilmen Dwight Varce and Peck concurred with Mallory and the Council decided to seek more information on this matter.