Gordon City Council Minutes February 9, 2017

Gordon City Council Minutes

February 9, 2017

Notice of the meeting was given in advance by publication in the Sheridan County Journal Star, the designated method for giving notice as shown by affidavit of publication on file in the City Clerk’s office.  Agendas of the meeting were simultaneously given to the Mayor and all members of the Council.  All proceedings hereafter shown were taken while the convened meeting was open to the attendance of the public.

A meeting of the City Council of the City of Gordon was called to order by Vice-Mayor Grant at 6:00 p.m., February 9, 2017 in the Council Chambers of the City Auditorium.  He noted the location of the Open Meetings Laws in the back of the room.

Present: Evans, Paul, Grant, and Bounous.

Absent: Russell. 

Also present was Student Liaison Wade Bergman.

Motion by Bounous, seconded by Evans to approve the minutes of the January 12, 2017 meeting.  Ayes:  Paul, Grant, Bounous, and Evans.

Motion by Bounous, seconded by Paul to approve the minutes of the January 19, 2017 special meeting. Ayes: Grant, Bounous, Evans, and Paul.

Motion by Evans seconded by Bounous to approve the December 2016 treasurer’s report. Ayes: Bounous, Evans, Paul, and Grant.

Motion by Evans, seconded by Paul, to approve the January 2017 treasurer’s report. Ayes: Evans, Paul, Grant, and Bounous.

Motion by Bounous, seconded by Evans to approve the bills.  Ayes:  Paul, Grant, Bounous, and Evans.

Abbreviations for this legal:  EX, expense; FE, fee; GR, groceries; MI, mileage; RE, Reimburse; RPT, report; SA, salaries; SE, services; SU, supplies.

PAID BILLS

EFTPS, Ally, EX, $562.39; EFTPS, Ally, EX, $523.52; EFTPS, Fleet Services, SU, $782.26; EFTPS, FNBO, FE, $69.37; EFTPS, NE Dept of Revenue, RE, $2,808.97; EFTPS, The Depository Trust Co, EX, $866.25; EFTPS, The Depository Trust Co, EX, $15,020.00; EFTPS, First National Bank, FE, $5.00; EFTPS, First National Bank, FE, $5.00; RS1139, Candy Allison, RE, $29.02; RS1140, JD Financial, SU, $197.85; RS1141, Grocery Mart, SU, $60.68; RS1142, Superfoods, SU, $17.02; WSI102, BOK Financial, FE, $750.00; 45205, Bd of Examiners St Superin, FE, $50.00; 45272, Payroll Fund, SA, $28,400.09; 45273, Airport Authority , RE, $143.72; 45274, Airport Authority , RE, $729.91; 45275, Airport Bond Savings, RE, $174.95; 45276, Airport Bond Savings, RE, $929.88; 45277, BC/BS, EX, $9,495.27; 45278, Cosmopolitan, SU, $24.97; 45279, Cowboys & Indians, SU, $29.95; 45280, Country Living, SU, $8.00; 45281, Cooking Light, SU, $24.00; 45282, Discover, SU, $24.95; 45283, Library Petty Cash Fund, RE, $15.26; 45284, League of NE Municipalities, FE, $750.00; 45285, NDEQ, FE, $150.00; 45286, NDEQ, FE, $150.00; 45287, Outdoor Life, SU, $19.97; 45288, Popular Mechanics, SU, $19.97; 45289, Seventeen, SU, $10.00; 45290, Star Herald, SU, $156.00; 45291, Special Assessment Bond Fund, RE, $723.67; 45292, Special Assessment Bond Fund, RE, $1,177.10; 45293, Self, SU, $16.00; 45294, City of Gordon, RE, $94.82; 45295, Martin Ramos, RE, $5.18; 45296, Payroll Fund, SA, $28,804.75; 45297, Ford Motor Credit, EX, $374.09; 45298, City of Gordon, RE, $156.72; 45299, William Giles, RE, $43.28; 45300, Phillip Harris, RE, $833.51; 45301, Madison National Life, EX, $65.55; 45302, PP Care Fund, RE, $150.00; 45303, BH Energy, SE, $3,451.01; 45304, Sheridan County Clerk, FE, $26.00; 45305, Viaero, SE, $146.63; 45306, USPS, SE, $175.16; 45307, Verizon, SE, $40.01.

Total February Paid Bills: $99,287.70.

UNPAID BILLS

45309, Chris Anderson, RE, $50.00; 45310, Action Communications, SE, $12,173.44; 45311, Dan Bishop , RE, $50.00; 45312, Jeff Brewer, RE, $50.00; 45313, Daylan Black Calf, RE, $50.00; 45314, Shelby Berger, RE, $50.00; 45315, City of Chadron, EX, $45.00; 45316, Customized Billing, SE, $255.00; 45317, BC Tire Service, SE, $100.00; 45318, Data Technologies, SU, $142.97; 45319, First National Bank of Omaha, SU, $2,106.03; 45320, JD Financial, SU, $128.71; 45321, Gordon Memorial, SE, $120.00; 45322, Great Plains Communications, SE, $1,720.14; 45323, Galls, SU, $87.23; 45324, Grocery Mart, SU, $7.56; 45325, The Glass Wizard, SE, $370.60; 45326, General Fund Money Market, EX, $3,000.00; 45327, Hinn’s Auto Supply, SU, $794.00; 45328, Homestead Building Supply, SU, $5.99; 45329, Husker Auto Parts, SU, $159.95; 45330, Hawkins, SU, $182.65; 45331, Pam Hotz, RE, $50.00; 45332, Clay Heath, RE, $50.00; 45333, Insurance Fund, EX, $14,841.67; 45334, Ideal Linen, SE, $96.32; 45335, Kustom Rock, SU, $25.00; 45336, Gardner, Loutaenhiser, & Ryan, SE, $750.00; 45337, Law Enforcement Systems, SU, $34.00; 45338, McLeods, SU, $709.80; 45339, Michael Todd & Co, SU, $209.94; 45340, NPPD, SE, $6,755.96; 45341, NE Total Office, SU, $68.37; 45342, NW Pipe Fittings, SU, $329.13; 45343, NW Community Action, SE, $133.67; 45344, NE Dept Health & Human Serv, FE, $40.00; 45345, NE Law Enforcement Training Ctr, FE, $10.00; 45346, Networkfleet, SE, $113.70; 45347, One Call Concepts, SE, $2.28; 45348, Powerplan, SU, $1,950.00; 45349, Petty Cash Fund, RE, $275.73; 45350, Shane Pascale, RE, $50.00; 45351, PADD, SE, $1,200.00; 45352, Quill, SU, $57.96; 45353, NE Public Health Env Lab, SE, $73.00; 45354, Superfoods, SU, $34.20; 45355, Sheridan County Journal Star, SE, $571.80; 45356, Smith King & Simmons, SE, $225.00; 45357, S & L Gas, SU, $1,390.72; 45358, True Value, SU, $480.95; 45359, Triangle Electric, SE, $1,384.46; 45360, Westco, SU, $1,505.18; 45361, Water Reserve USDA, RE, $1,716.00; 45362, Water System Impr Project, EX, $15,800.00; 45363, Adam Wackler, RE, $50.00; 45364, Kevin Wolkins, RE, $50.00; 45365, Xerox, EX, $610.42.

Total February Unpaid Bills: $73,294.53.

Total February Paid Bills: $99,287.70.

Total February Bills: $172,582.23.

Joan Yekel, CrossRoads Resources, LLC, was present to request that council sign the Problem Gambling Awareness Month Proclamation. Joan Yekel stressed to council the importance of the proclamation stating that council’s support helps get information to people in the area who are struggling with problem gambling.  Motion by Evans, seconded by Paul to allow Vice-Mayor Grant to sign the Problem Gambling Awareness Month Proclamation. Ayes: Grant, Bounous, Evans, and Paul.

“Problem Gambling Awareness Month”

WHEREAS, our community is home to individuals and families adversely affected by problem gambling; and

WHEREAS, compulsive gambling is often hidden from family members, social services and mental health professionals; and

WHEREAS, compulsive gambling often occurs in combination with other disorders such as chemical dependency and depression; and

WHEREAS, it is important to raise awareness of the warning signs of compulsive gamblers and connect them with professional help,

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Kelly Grant, Vice-Mayor of the City of Gordon, Nebraska do hereby proclaim March 2017 as “Problem Gambling Awareness Month” and urge citizens to learn more about the consequences of problem gambling.

/s/ Kelly Grant

Vice-Mayor

Northwest Community Action Partnership has requested that the City of Gordon renew the transportation agreement that supplies the services of the Sheridan County Public Transportation System to the City of Gordon. The local match requested from the City of Gordon is $99.34 per month. This amount is based on ridership in the city from the previous year. Motion by Paul, seconded by Evans to allow Vice-Mayor Grant to sign the Transportation Agreement for 2017-2018. Ayes: Grant, Bounous, Evans, and Paul.

The public hearing on the one and six year street improvement plan was opened at 6:23 pm.  The hearing was turned over to the hearing officer, Jacob Sheridan, who called on Street Superintendent Dan Bishop to inform council and the public on the proposed one and six year street plan. Mr. Bishop informed council and those present that there were no changes to the prior year plan. There were no comments oral or written presented at the hearing or comments from the general public.  The hearing was closed at 6:24 pm and conduct of the meeting was returned to Vice-Mayor Grant.  Motion by Evans, seconded by Bounous to approve Resolution 2017-07. Ayes: Evans, Paul, Grant, and Bounous.

RESOLUTION 2017-07

A RESOLUTION ACCEPTING THE 2017 ONE AND SIX YEAR STREET IMPROVEMENT PLAN.

WHEREAS, the City Council of the City of Gordon has reviewed the One and Six Year Plan for Highway, Road and Street Improvements, and

WHEREAS, a public hearing to receive citizen input was held at 6:00 p.m. on February 9, 2017 in the City Council Chambers of the City Auditorium.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the City Council has determined the need for improvements on East 11th Street, North Elm Street, and North Spruce Street and a continued street maintenance program in the next year.

Passed and approved this 9th   day of February, 2017. 

/s/ Kelly Grant

Vice-Mayor

ATTEST: /s/ Kim Buchan

City Clerk

City Manager Sheridan explained to council that there were now employees interested in utilizing the city’s current Flex Spending program for medical and dependent care costs. Since it has been over a year since any employee has used this program the account for the Flex Spending has been closed, but the city currently has a money market entitled Medical Claim Account that was used as part of the city’s health insurance benefit. Due to rising costs of health insurance, this part of the benefit has been discontinued and the money market is not being utilized. After some discussion, motion by Bounous, seconded by Paul to pass Resolution 2017-08. Ayes: Paul, Grant, Bounous, and Evans.

RESOLUTION 2017-08

A RESOLUTION CHANGING THE NAME AND USE OF THE CITY OF GORDON’S MEDICAL CLAIM MONEY MARKET ACCOUNT AT THE FIRST NATIONAL BANK, GORDON, NE.

WHEREAS, the City of Gordon created the Medical Claim Account Money Market at the First National Bank for the purpose of reimbursing city employees, who were members of the City of Gordon’s health insurance pool, for portions of their insurance deductibles, and

WHEREAS, the City of Gordon no longer utilizes this insurance deductible reimbursement program, and

WHEREAS, eligible city employees are now taking advantage of the City of Gordon’s Flex Benefits plan to help offset medical and dependent care costs, and

WHEREAS, a money market account is needed to keep these funds separate from other city funds.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE MAYOR AND THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF GORDON, that the Medical Claim Money Market Account be renamed “Flex Spending Account”, so that it will reflect the purpose of the account.

Passed and approved this 9th day of February, 2017.

/s/ Kelly Grant

Vice-Mayor

ATTEST: /s/ Kim Buchan

City Clerk

The City of Gordon has a maintenance agreement with the Nebraska Department of Roads for snow removal and surface maintenance for the state highways that run through the city limits of Gordon. Motion by Bounous, seconded by Paul to allow Vice-Mayor Grant to sign the Certificate of Compliance for the NE Department of Roads maintenance agreement. Ayes: Grant, Bounous, Evans, and Paul.

Jill Noetzelman, Open Range Beef, approached City Manager with her concerns regarding the lack of adequate housing within the City of Gordon. Open Range Beef is currently in the planning stages of expanding their business, with the possibility of doubling their employee base. City Manager Sheridan had a teleconference meeting with members of the Community Development Corporation, representatives from Open Range Beef, Star Lehl and Kristi McClung, NE Department of Economic Development, Marla Marx, USDA Business Specialist, Nancy Bentley, Housing Authority Director, and other community representatives in an effort to begin exploring solutions to the housing problem. The first step to looking for solutions is to do a housing study. The last time the City of Gordon completed a housing study was in 1993. After some discussion, motion by Bounous, seconded by Paul to allow City Manager Sheridan to facilitate plans for a housing study to be presented to council for approval. Ayes: Bounous, Evans, Paul and Grant.

Council was given information on the City of Beatrice’s “Free Land” program. Lots owned by the city would be offered to people at no cost if all terms and conditions of the contract were met. The terms and conditions would include building a house within the guidelines set forth by the city within the time limit. If the conditions are not met, the land would either be returned to the city or purchased for a pre-determined amount. City Manager Sheridan expressed to council that this type of program could help to facilitate a partial solution to the housing shortage in Gordon. After some discussion, motion by Bounous, seconded by Evans to allow the city manager to begin working with the city attorney to develop a “Free Land” program to be presented to council for approval. Ayes: Evans, Paul, Grant, and Bounous.

Council was given information on the council and mayor compensation rates for other cities in Nebraska. No action was taken.

Motion by Evans, seconded by Paul to approve the appointments of Trent Kling and Alyssa Dehart to the Gordon Planning Commission and to thank them for their service to the community. Ayes: Paul, Grant, Bounous, and Evans.

City Manager Sheridan went to the Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) meeting in Scottsbluff last week. Council was given copies of the information provided at this meeting. Beginning February 1, 2017, NPPD will replaced broken street lights with and LED bulb, which will be more cost effective and also provide a better lighting source.

Council was given an update provided by the Public Alliance for Community Energy. Black Hills Energy agreed to participate in the Choice Gas Program until May of 2019. The selection period begins April 13 and consumers are encouraged to wait until this time period to select a supplier as the rates will be more competitive at this time. 

In a review of the current pay structure for the Gordon Police Department, City Manager Sheridan and Chief Adam Wackler felt that some changes were needed in an effort to simplify payroll by eliminating “comp time”. Previously, officers could hold over overtime hours and use it as paid time off. With the elimination of comp time, it is being proposed that new employees be offered 20 hours of vacation after completing the six month probationary period. After some discussion, motion by Bounous, seconded by Evans to pass Resolution 2017-09. Ayes: Grant, Bounous, Evans, and Paul.

RESOLUTION NO. 2017-09

RESOLUTION AMENDING SECTION 5) EMPLOYEE BENFIT PROGRAMS AND SECTION 8) WORK CONDITIONS AND EXPECTATIONS OF THE EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK

WHEREAS:  the City recognizes the need to regularly edit and update the personnel manual to accommodate for changes in law, policies, and the workplace environment;

WHEREAS:  upon review of the current personnel manual, it has been determined that certain revisions are necessary to accommodate such changes in law, policies, and the workplace environment;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the City Council of the City of Gordon that the City of Gordon Employee Handbook, previously adopted and approved by the City of Gordon, is recognized as the official Employee Handbook of the city and describes all necessary employment policies and procedures of the City. That certain provisions of the Employee Handbook are hereby revised and incorporated into the existing Employee Handbook.

This motion was introduced and adopted this 9th day of February, 2017, by the City Council of the City of Gordon.

/s/ Kelly Grant

Vice-Mayor

ATTEST: /s/ Kim Buchan

City Clerk

One of the employee benefits offered to city employees is secondary education reimbursement. The amount of reimbursement is based on the grade received by the employee. City Manager Sheridan will be completing his Masters of Business Education, and is requesting that council approve the reimbursement for these classes. After some discussion, motion by Bounous, seconded by Evans to table a decision on this request until the March meeting. Ayes: Bounous, Evans, Paul, and Grant.

The Nebraska Liquor Commission has scheduled the hearings for the Whiteclay liquor licenses for March 7 at 9 am. The denial of these licenses would have a significant impact on the surrounding towns and because of this, City Manager Sheridan feels that it would benefit the city to offer testimony at these hearings. Council member Bounous and Chief Wackler both voiced their support of City Manager Sheridan testifying at the hearings in support of renewal of the licenses.

The next City Council Strategic Planning Session will be February 22 at 5:00 pm in the council chambers.

The League of NE Municipalities Midwinter Conference will be February 27 and 28 in Lincoln. City Manager Sheridan and Mayor Russell are both registered for this conference. 

With no further business, motion by Bounous, seconded by Evans to adjourn at 7:43 pm.  Ayes: Evans, Paul, Grant, and Bounous.

/s/ Kim Buchan

City Clerk

/s/ Nancy I Russell

Mayor

I, the undersigned, City Clerk for the City of Gordon, Nebraska hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and correct copy of the proceedings had and done by the Mayor and Council on February 9, 2017; that all of the subjects included in the foregoing proceedings were contained in the agenda for the meeting kept continuously current and available for inspection at the office of the City Clerk;  that such subjects were contained in said minutes of the Mayor and Council of the City of Gordon from which the foregoing proceedings were written from and available for public inspection within ten working days and prior to the next convened meeting of said body; that all news media requesting notification of the time and place of said meeting and the subjects to be discussed at said meeting.

/s/ Kim Buchan

City Clerk

Published: February 15, 2017