Lennox City Council held their final meeting of 2021 last Monday, Dec. 27. Council approved one adjustment to the agenda with the addition of personnel to executive session.
With no visitors to be heard, Council opened the public hearing in regards to the City’s Water and Sewer Improvements project (Central Basin 4 SRF Applications). City Administrator Nathan Vander Plaats explained what the project would include. The City expects to apply for approximately $10,255,000 for the improvements.
The City is seeking project funding from the Board of Water and Natural Resources for both the sanitary sewer and water improvements. The funds could be a grant from the state Consolidated Water Facilities Construction Program and/or a loan from the Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds (SRF) Program. The expected loan terms for sanitary sewer are 2.125 percent for 30 years, and 1.875 percent for 30 years for Drinking Water. The Board of Water and Natural Resources may forgive all or a portion of the loan principal.
He explained that the total amount does not have to be used. Options are open.
Council approved the consent agenda which included minutes from the previous meeting, claims and reports from Water/Wastewater, Ambulance, Police, Library, Streets, and the October 2021 Performance Management Report.
Under old business Council approved Ordinance #631, the Fiscal Year 2021 Supplemental Budget.
Also under old business Council approved the Personnel Policies Amendment.
This was tabled at the Dec. 13th meeting as Council requested additional information about the impact of the proposed merit increase policy. The policy, as proposed, would increase wages by 3.98% overall.
Under new business, Council discussed Resolution 2021-12-27-01: Schedule of Fees and Fines. An updated resolution of fees for the next year is approved by council each year, this resolution was tabled as council wanted more information before finalizing.
Also under new business Council approved Resolution 2021-12-27-02: Contingency Transfer. After review and taking into consideration of payroll for December that will be paid in January additional contingency transfer is necessary.
The first reading of Ordinance 633: Municipal Ward Redistricting was held. The redistricting for the City of Lennox uses the map referred to as “Alternate #3” as proposed by SECOG. If approved, these Wards will be active for the upcoming 2022 City Council election in April. The City Ward Map Alternative #3 is pictured at right. The optimal district population in each of the three Wards is 806.
Council approved to re-classify EMS personnel as Class B Public Safety. According to Vander Plaats for some time, law enforcement and fire rescue personnel employed by local governments have been classified as Class B Public Safety Personnel for purposes of the state’s defined-benefit retirement system.
Garbage Hauler License Renewals were approved. Three garbage haulers applied for a license in 2022 — Novak, RBS and A-OK.
ACH Fee Collection, an agreement with Forte Services was approved. This is because the City of Lennox is moving to Front Desk in January, and credit and debit cards will now have a convenience fee attached for payments made on Utility bills. If the utility bill is paid by a checking or saving account, the fee is charged to the city. Council also approved an IT Services Agreement with Raztech.
Following executive session, Council approved to hire Kimberly Berry at $20.00/hour with a signed training agreement.