Hay Springs City Council Minutes March 14, 2017

REGULAR MEETING Call to Order: Mayor Richard McKay called the Regular Meeting of the Hay Springs City Council to order at 7:01 p.m. Council persons Jim Varvel, Marcella Hale, Keith Kearns and Luke Marcy were present. City Attorney Jamian Simmons was absent. Her new associate attorney, James McCave, was present. It was noted that the Open Meetings Act is posted. Minutes Approval: Kearns made motion, Marcy seconded to approve the Minutes from February 14, 2017 Regular Meeting. All voted aye. Motion carried. Agenda Approval: Varvel made motion, Hale seconded to approve the agenda for the March 14, 2017 Regular Council Meeting. All voted aye. Motion carried. Jeff with Chamberlain Chapel: Regarding disinterment of Joseph “Bubs” Heiting. Copies of statements to help clarify issues regarding charges were given to council members. Funeral’s involvement was the fact that the entities that actually did the disinterment, being Black Hills Wilbert Vault Company, Inc. and Wild Excavating, sent the billing through Chamberlain Chapel in the regular monthly statements and Chamberlain Chapel paid them. That is why Chamberlain Chapel sent a bill to the City for reimbursement. Questions on amounts starting with the assumed $150 charge being the cost for the disinterment. The owner’s son at Wilbert Vault discussed the situation with Jeff Chamberlain and Jeff asked what he would charge to do the disinterment. It was said as a favor to Jeff, he would do it for $150 if everything was set up and ready, if he could do it while he was here. Everything being set up and ready meaning the graves would be dug, so all he had to do was go over, put his equipment to the vault and move it. After that, the funeral home had nothing to do with the decisions made about who, when, why and where that disinterment took place and got finished. In the process of that time period, the decision of whether or not to actually do the disinterment and then deciding when it would be done had nothing to do with Chamberlain Chapel. Mr. Drabbels, as a Cemeterian, was involved in that decision. The logistics of having Wilbert Vault come in and do this when there was another burial going on became complicated when Jeff was told the City employees would dig up Bub’s grave but they were not going to dig up the grave of the child. That’s why Wild Excavation was involved, they were contacted to come in and dig up the grave of the child. Jeff was also told the City employees were not going to actually get in and disinter the child. On the original statement back in December 2016, the $100 from the funeral home was for Jeff’s son to be there to do that. Mayor and Jeff have since talked and Jeff is fine with taking the $100 charge off. But as far as funeral charges, that was the only charge. The logistics of trying to get three graves open during the same time another funeral was going on turned out to be very difficult. Three graves meaning the one we were putting Bubs in and actually almost a double one to get him out, and then moving the baby. So to say “we’ll just do it while they’re here” became quite a problem. And then other opportunities when Wilbert Vault was coming down happened to coincide with events going on with the City. George commented that there was a charge for closing the graves and the City employees closed the graves. Jeff said that is just the way his secretary typed it up. George replied the City employees dug one grave and closed two graves. Only one grave opening should have been charged. Jeff suggested the City discusses that with Wild’s. George also mentioned that whoever dug the child up was supposed to find the remains. The City employees went out there with a screen and spent a day sifting through two truckloads of dirt to find the remains. Jeff replied that is why his son was there, to do that. And it did not turn out that way in the digging. When you are disinterring an unmarked grave, unknown entity of how old that child was when it was buried, you have no idea of what you’re going to come into. However, George knew what was there; he found it the first time. Jeff understood that a piece of metal was found. George informed him that he found bones, and cloth and a tag off the casket and they put it right back in the same hole. George’s question was why the City was being billed for opening and closing when the City employees closed the graves. Mr. Drabbels added that the $475 was Wild’s charge for what they did. Hale commented that the cost of a Vault, for them to come down here, bring a Vault down here, and the Vault itself is not much more than $1,280. Jeff agreed that was correct. Jeff replied that when Chamberlain Chapel sells a Vault, he made an agreement with Wilbert Vault not to charge them mileage, because most cemeteries in our area that they service is Vault required. By doing that, Jeff has lowered the cost for the Vaults. It does state in their price book, when they are coming down for a set up, when the family chooses not to have a Vault; and there are some cemeteries that allow that because they do not have cemetery equipment, the Vault company comes down, sets up the tent and lowering device. They charge $2 per mile. 240 miles roughly, closer to 250 miles round trip from Black Hawk, South Dakota to Hay Springs, Nebraska. About 100 miles from Rapid City, South Dakota to Chadron, Nebraska. Another 20 miles to Hay Springs, Nebraska and 10 miles to Rapid City, South Dakota from Black Hawk, South Dakota. An estimated $500 of that cost is simply mileage. Marcy said he thinks the issue is more that the City Council was under the assumption the grave was going to be moved when there was another funeral, for the charge of $150. So when we proceeded not to do that and called them directly to come down here to specifically move these graves, someone should have been notified here so a decision could have been made because the council was under a completely different assumption. Jeff said he had nothing to do with that. The $150 agreement was for when Wilbert Vault was already here. That did not happen. Hale asked who called them. Mr. Drabbels said he called them “because we were going to get this done”. Mr. Drabbels went to the guys but it was a busy time before Friendly Festival and then they had some street work come up. Around the middle part of November, it was reported that Mr. Drabbels called the son of the owner of Wilbert Vault, he was supposed to come down Wednesday, and it turned out he wasn’t going to be able to make it, so Drabbels called the owner and lined it up to be done that Tuesday. The owner said he would come down to Hay Springs himself and he would do it. Hale asked if the City employees were ever asked. George said they were informed that Wilbert Vault would be here on this date and the guys were to have the grave dug and everything ready. The guys did not have contact with Wild Excavation until they showed up at the cemetery that day. Kearns made the comment that our question for tonight’s meeting was the bill with Chamberlain Mortuary. Jeff came and explained why and the amounts and where they came from. Kearns suggested any issues and concerns the council has should be discussed separately from this part of the agenda. George made it clear that this was not going to happen again. If there’s a question about somebody being somewhere and it’s unmarked, it’s not going to be dug up. Tina Vifquain: Viaero Power Pole: She began by saying, “I am an enraged citizen, in protest to the erection on the Viaero Cellular Pole and Antennae, I feel cheated in regards to the location next to my business building at 116 North Main Street here in Hay Springs. And the location is within 50 feet of a child care facility. The autistics resemble that of Godzilla. The electromagnetic energy which this facility energizes near me and my concerns is detrimental to the ability for further accessibility is now limited.” It was commented that it is the understanding that this is not a publically owned property that the Viaero Tower has been erected on and that there are no zoning regulations that have any standing as far as Hay Springs goes. This is a public forum and it is not the proper place because this is a private owner doing what he chooses to with his private land. There was discussion regarding zoning regulations. It did not come to vote through the City Council and therefore the City’s involvement was limited to none. The issue of health concerns was listened to. There was further discussion. No action was taken. Helen Strotheide: Hay Springs Cemetery: She asked if she has a deed she can record and if the City has voided the incorrect cemetery plat map. Hale commented that it was in the last month’s council meeting discussion. Kearns mentioned that when we are finished with it, she will have a recordable deed. It is the City’s intent that we are going to make the current plat map so that it includes those spaces where people are already buried. The empty spaces will not be sold. It is a work in progress. There was further discussion. Public Concerns: none. Reports of Officers, Boards and Committees: Street/Water/Clerk: Lists were submitted by employees, no questions asked by council; Krystyn Turman - Pioneer Manor: Varvel reported that the Nursing Home is still looking for a Director of Nursing, trying to fill those spots with the two RN’s that they currently have, so they are strung a little thin; otherwise things are going well ; Jim Varvel –Finance: Reviewed and things look fine, no concerns; Keith Kearns – SWANN: Meeting last month, they accepted LARM, League Association of Risk Management, for insurance providers. Last month was the special meeting, they reviewed bills and approved those; and then they approved LARM as the entity to provide insurance for SWANN. Next meeting is Thursday, March 16th, 2017. Mayor had a concern regarding the ashes piling up out at the dump, he requested that Kearns bring it up to SWANN and see what they say; Jim Varvel – Lister-Sage Meeting yesterday, they are looking at a major overhaul of the fitness and weight equipment, so they will try to do some fund raising; need $20,000-$30,000 for that; Richard McKay – Mayor: Submitted written report for the council to review. OLD BUSINESS PADD Update – Blighted and Substandard Study: Tabled until next meeting. Water Loss Report: 25%. Replacing water meters, and some 2 inch meters arrived so Aaron can start changing those out. If the weather is nice, he is going to start checking for leaks. Developing Salary Schedule: Kearns called and left a message with Pat Cain who does this for SWANN, no response. Tabled until next meeting. Chamberlain Chapel Claim: Based upon the information provided by Jeff Chamberlain, Kearns made motion to approve the claim to reimburse Chamberlain Chapel for expenses on behalf of the City. Varvel seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. Discussion of Cemetery Fees: Tabled until next meeting. Storm Water Runoff – Lister-Sage/School – Engineering/Drainage Study: Daniel Bennett with PADD helped us immensely with this. We did get four proposals back for the RFQ, Request for Qualifications, to conduct a Drainage Study. The Drainage Study is needed in order for us to actually proceed with grant projects. This gets us prepared for that. The City sent the RFQ out to Rapid City, Scottsbluff and a few others that would be qualified to do the Drainage Study. The first proposal was from Advanced Engineering and Environmental Services, Inc. (AE2S) out of Rapid City, South Dakota. They put together an impressive packet and their bid to complete the Drainage Study was $13,500. The next proposal was from Miller & Associates Consulting Engineers, P.C. out of Kearney, Nebraska. Their bid to complete the Drainage Study was $6,950. Varvel received a call from a gentleman out of Valentine, with Niobrara Valley Consultants, who would work in conjunction with Miller & Associates to complete this project. The third proposal was from Baker & Associates out of Scottsbluff, Nebraska. Their bid to complete the Drainage Study was $11,600. The final proposal was from M.C. Schaff & Associates, Inc. out of Scottsbluff, Nebraska. Their bid to complete the Drainage Study was $9,888. Varvel suggested the Drainage Study should be at the expense of the City, but he foresees that the entire project cost may be shared by Lister-Sage and the School. The Drainage Study will likely address some of the issues the City has seen come up in the last few years. There was discussion regarding the proposed prices. There was hesitation accepting Miller & Associates, who had the lowest bid, due to commuting distance and lack of experience with Niobrara Valley Consultants. It was explained that Niobrara Valley Consultants would cooperate with Miller & Associates in order to be qualified to complete the Drainage Study. Kearns had a concern that the low bid was half the cost of the high bid. The other three firms who offered proposals for the Drainage Study are very reputable firms. There was much discussion regarding if the City is bound to a low bid, as well as if the City put it out for bids, where it was clarified that the City asked for a statement of qualifications and a proposed cost to do the Drainage Study. It was advised that the City essentially should have the ability to choose the proposal, and by taking a higher bid the Council is saying the money value is the difference in their confidence that the job will get done properly. Kearns made motion to accept M.C. Schaff & Associates, Inc. out of Scottsbluff, Nebraska with a proposed bid of $9,888 to conduct the Drainage Study for the City of Hay Springs. Hale seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. Housing Study Work Group Representative: Jacob Sheridan, who was at the previous month’s council meeting to discuss a Housing Study, sent an email to the Clerk requesting someone from the City Council to be on a work group. Kearns volunteered. Housing Authority Parking Lot: Mayor stated the reason this is on the agenda is because there has been some question as to who is responsible for what with regards to snow removal. Jeannie Ashley was present. She noted that they were on the agenda last month but the Housing Authority was not notified and they did not request to be on the agenda, so they were not at the previous month’s meeting to represent. Three of the Housing Authority Commissioners were present at this month’s meeting, they govern the Housing Authority. They were present to gather further information regarding the decision of the Housing Authority’s snow removal policies based upon the City’s perspective. It was mentioned that there is a necessity for assigned parking, especially on the West side, to lessen the problems with getting the snow removed. Surrounding areas have assigned parking policies in place. The Housing Authority is looking for cost effective ways to manage budget cuts. The parking lot is on the City’s right-of-way. There was much discussion regarding how to handle snow removal and parking. Mayor suggested that the City does some research on whether or not we can authorize assigned parking. The matter of snow removal will be handled based upon that decision. NEW BUSINESS Claims Approval: Questions of the Bomgaars claim, Summit Supply claim and Buettner Construction claim. Varvel made motion to approve claims, Marcy seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. Assurant Employee Benefits $168.46; Baker & Associates, Inc. $375; Black Hills Energy $1,603.94; Blue Cross Blue Shield $2,096.04; Bomgaars $712.46; Buettner Construction $250; Farmer’s Coop $34.95; Godfrey Brake Service & Supply, Inc. $661.92; Great Plains Communications $425; Hay Springs Lumber $589.66; HD Supply Waterworks, LTD $3,953.09; Hip Hop $228.50; Ideal Linen Supply $39.23; Lawson Products $1,511.46; MCI $60.35; NE Public Health Environment $172; Nebraska Public Power District $3,103.17; Nebraska Total Office $203.96; Norms Napa $54.36; Northwest Pipe Fittings, Inc. $693.11; Northwest Rural Public Power $35; One Call Concepts, Inc. $3.42; Panhandle Partnership $100; Peters Electric $122.78; Petty Cash $154.10; Pioneer Research Corporation $399.40; Rushville Service Center $172.60; Sackers $394.96; Sandhills News, Inc. $215.89; Sargent Drilling Company $964.94; Security First Bank $1,570.37; Security First Insurance $3,602.10; Smith, King And Simmons, P.C. $364.18; Sturdevant’s Auto Parts $215.88; Summit Supply Corporation of Colorado $1,243.70; SWANN $6,949.45; Toof’s Diesel Repair $160; Utility Service CO., Inc. $751.28; Westco $412.08; Young’s Repair, Inc. $162.42; American Funds Service Company $548.74; EFTPS $1,897.82; Postmaster $149.98; Panhandle Area Development District $2,056.20; Nebraska Department of Revenue $814.75 Approval of February Treasurer’s Report: Varvel made motion, Kearns seconded to approve February Treasurer’s Report. All voted aye. Motion carried. Northwest Community Action Agreement: The Mayor read the Agreement in its entirety: “The City of Hay Springs and Northwest Community Action Partnership, program manager for Sheridan County Public Transportation System agree to the following: During the period of July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2018, Sheridan County Public Transportation System agrees to provide services to the residents of Hay Springs, as well as others in Sheridan County. In return, the City of Hay Springs agrees to pay $97.42 in one annual payment, due by August 31, 2017 to Northwest Community Action Partnership for this time period. This amount is the estimated amount needed for local match to support the federal and state dollars for this program. NCAP may adjust the payment for June 2017 if the grant requires more or less local match. If for some reason, Northwest Community Action Partnership is not awarded the Department of Transportation grant for the City of Hay Springs would be released from payment as stated above.” Kearns made motion to approve the Northwest Community Action Partnership Agreement for one annual payment of $97.42 due by August 31, 2017. Marcy seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. Snow Ordinances: The City’s new Ordinance Book does not have a Snow Ordinance. There was much discussion. No action taken. Naming Cemetery Addition: When the City had the new addition plat done, we did not know that there was a verbal agreement with Patricia Thomas, who donated the approximately ten acres to the City of Hay Springs to be added as an addition to the cemetery. Suggestions were made that the City puts up a brick post at the west end with a dedication plaque; or there is a brick post already at the west end of the current cemetery that has a plaque dedicated to Will & Elsie Hollstein, the City could go west of there and match the brick post. It was asked if the City is going to have to rename the plat we already have filed at the Sheridan County Courthouse for the new addition, named as: “Hay Springs Cemetery First Addition”. It was noted that there is nothing designating such on the deed because this was a verbal agreement. Advised that the deed would denote ownership, but what the letter sounds like is that they are requesting the new addition to be commemorated. The ownership is not changing, so the deed would not change. What would change is how the City handles how it is designated to the public. The deed states: “Patricia Thomas, grantor, gives it to the City of Hay Springs.” The owner is the City of Hay Springs. The steps of a plaque could be taken, or when the new addition is done, put another entry way and call it the “Edith Crawford Demmer Addition”. No contact has been made to the family to inquire about what their specific preference is, outside of what is stated in the letter. It was agreed to ask City Attorney Jamian Simmons to do further research and make inquiries. Park Shelter: Tabled until next meeting. Municipal City Wells: The City received the annual performance test for the three Municipal City Wells from Sargent Drilling Company and they notated a problem with the Airport Well, the far west well. The efficiency for that well went from 60.5% to 46.5% efficiency. The flow is what dropped. The well starts out at 110 gallons per minute and drops down to about 80 gallons per minute when it is done. That is mainly due to wear on the bowls, so Sargent Drilling Company is recommending that the City pulls the pump and rebuild everything. Most wells last 10 years before needing maintenance. The Airport Well has lasted 25 years and has not required maintenance in that time. Aaron received two estimates, one from Sargent Drilling Company and one from Layne Christensen Company. Sargent estimated $26,000 to rehab the Well, with all possible worse scenarios. The bid from Dan Freese with Layne Christensen Company came in at $24,997.68. The estimate from Dan Freese has a $400 addition on it because they would video tape the Well while they are here. When you pull a Well, you are required by the State to video tape to make sure there is not any wear in your casing or any encrustation to make the flow less. Layne Christensen Company also provided that while they were here they would video tape the Hank’s Well, since that has to be done to verify that location before the City could ever register that location to be used as another Municipal Well. Aaron mentioned that the Middle Well was drilled six months after the Airport Well, and that Well has not had any rehab work done on it either. Its performance has stayed the same but next year it could decline also. Aaron has been watching his trends on the Scada System for declines. Concerning the Water Department Budget for this kind of repair, the performance test and maintenance are in the Budget, but there has not been a reserve put in the Budget for this kind of repair. The repair expense will come out of the General Funds, since the City does allot for development expenses. A loan was discussed but the consensus was that would not be necessary for the Well repair expense, as long as the cost stays within the parameters of the estimate. Aaron recommended Layne Christensen Company because they drilled the Airport Well, which was done in 1991. Also, Dan Freese, who did the estimate for Layne Christensen Company, was present when the Airport Well was drilled. Layne Christensen Company had the lower estimate to rehab the Well. It was noted that with the Hank’s Well location the City is looking at having the video tape verification done; then you have to have the new Well site inspection done, which Aaron is working on with Doug Woodbeck; and then the State has to review. The first step toward moving closer to having that Well done would be getting it videotaped to verify where the casing has been set. Kearns made motion that the City goes with Layne Christensen Company to do the Airport Well rehab for an estimated $24,997.68. Marcy seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. Aaron added that he spoke to HOA Solutions, Inc. about putting a transducer, just the wire, in the Airport Well while Layne Christensen Company is rehabbing it. The estimates cost was $1,800. What that would do is in the future, for example, if the aquifer goes down and if the Airport Well that the City is rehabbing ever goes down to a critical level, that transducer would shut the Well off, lessening if not eliminating problems from the State. And if the Airport Well stays online for another 25 years, by that time the State might have a regulation saying the City has to use a transducer anyway. Marcy made motion that when Layne Christensen Company is here to pull the West Well, they will run the wire for a possible transducer in the future. Kearns seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. Water Rates: The State advises every three years to have a Water Rates Study done. There was discussion. No action taken. Executive Session: none Items for next meeting were discussed. There being no further business, Varvel made motion, and Hale seconded to adjourn at 8:31 p.m. All voted aye. Motion carried. Richard E. McKa Mayor Kayley R. Taylor City Clerk/Treasurer Published: March 29, 2017