New Plainview Council members and new Mayor sworn in
By Cheryl Nymann, Editor
The regular Plainview City Council meeting was scheduled for a week later due to inclement weather, and was held on January 17th. After the Oath of Office to the new council and mayor by Peg Tentis (Renee Mierau - City Administrator/Clerk was absent), the meeting was called to order, agenda approved, and consent agenda approved.
During the Public comment portion of the meeting two people spoke of their concerns with the electronics store destroyed by fire a month ago and asked when the demo on the building was going to be done. City Ordinance #304.4 concerning a nuisance was sited for the property, as well as junk in open space (704.5) and the safety issues this all poses. Veit was contacted and they said they will take the debris. Council was encouraged to enforce the ordinances they have.
Another items of business was the vacancy on the City Council after Roger Ziebell assumed his position as Mayor. Lawyer pointed out state statute in reference to this, that if a candidate wasn’t approved, the mayor could appoint someone, and that it didn’t have to be tonight. Mayor Ziebell motioned to have Steve O’Connor sit on City Council vacancy, it was seconded and discussed. The discussion centered around he wasn’t even on the ballot, and at times, the appointment has gone to the person with the next highest votes that was on the ballot. The vote was a tie with Walkes and Ziebell voting in favor, and LaRocque and Boettcher voting naye. Since the motion didn’t pass, the Mayor appointed Steve O’Connor to fill the vacancy.
Numerous things were approved, including official designations (except engineer - discussed later in story), library board members, 2017 proposed assignments. Council agreed with the Mayor that it is not necessary to have liaisons in departments, but keep them on boards. Roger Durgin was appointed to be on the Planning and Zoning Board. Mayor Ziebell brought up the City engineer, and said, “At this time I’m looking for a new City Engineer.” Current City Engineer WHKS was not approved in the official designations.
Approved were new Ambulance Department hires: Amanda Dybedahl, for a full-time position, and Tristan Olson will soon become a licensed EMT, and be a paid on call volunteer at the Ambulance Department.
There was discussion on the purchase of a new police car. A squad car was recently damaged in pursuit of a violent criminal with a past. The damage totals $9,000. Before the damage, the plan was to replace a vehicle this year, and the other vehicle would go to the Ambulance Department for a response vehicle. The money from insurance could be used for repairs or put towards a new vehicle. The council approved to just fix it, and give that vehicle to the Ambulance Dept. leaving the decals off. An audience member asked why the City police are responding to out of town calls - this was the third vehicle to be smashed up. The response was that it’s the mutual aid response.
Snow removal policy was also discussed. The Mayor has a concern about the downtown area and the plowing of snow against cars and curbs on main street, and he asked Public Works to not to this, and get the windrow taken care on main street as soon as possible after a snow plow. The Mayor also asked Public Works to look into keeping the Trail Head parking lot plowed and salted in a timely matter since that’s a parking and pick up site for Mayo employees riding the bus to work. He also asked that the Liquor Store and Library be completely plowed by 9:00am after a snowfall.
The Code of Conduct resolution was taken off the agenda to give the new members an opportunity to view it.
A lengthy discussion was held regarding the obstructed vision on Broadway at the corners of 4th and 5th street with nothing being decided on it.
The meeting was adjourned at 6:55pm.