CITY OF LOUISVILLE

CITY COUNCIL

JANUARY 24, 2001

LOUISVILLE, NE

A regular meeting of the city council of the City of Louisville was held on Wednesday, January 24, 2001 at 6:45 p.m. at the City Hall. Present was Mayor Henry, Council Members: Rod Petersen, Don Harris, Dave Pankonin and Greg Manley. Also present were Attorney Roger Johnson and four guests.

Notice of the regular meeting was given in advance thereof by publication in the Plattsmouth Journal and by posting in three (3) public places as shown by the certificate attached to these minutes. Notice was simultaneously given to all council members. Their acknowledgment of receipt of notice and the agenda is attached to these minutes. All proceedings thereafter were taken while the convened meeting was open to the public.

Motion by Petersen, second by Manley to approve the consent agenda, which consists of minutes from January 10, 2001 meeting and City warrants. Ayes: Harris, Manley, Pankonin and Petersen. Nays: none. Motion carried. 

Mayor Henry took a few minutes to explain to the audience the hearing for the Community Development Block Grant for the Water Study. Informal discussion followed on the request from Layne Western to extend the start time on the temporary well due to the fact that materials ordered had not been received yet. Mayor Henry noted the Water Supply Needs Survey completed by Bev Dennis in October, 2000 indicated a total estimated cost of $3,410,000. Don Harris asked what the status of the Prairie Hills Project was. Mayor Henry advised that Eric Obert would be submitting bid specs for approval by the council in the near future. Mayor Henry noted the delay on both the well and Prairie Hills was due to information not received back from the State of Nebraska. 

Mayor Henry stated that they would have to get with Bob Copple and Dick Berner regarding their proposed housing development and the impact it would have on the number of gallons the City is able to pump per day. Harris noted concern over the ability of the wells to keep up with the existing households and if the water system could withstand additional users without having to ration water. Dave Pankonin stated that we would need a statement from Eric Obert as to whether the additional housing development could be added to the existing system. Pankonin also noted that it was also a dilemma since the City would need the additional numbers to make the long-term solution workable. A member of the audience asked how big the development would be. Mayor Henry answered that Phase I and II would encompass 58 lots, 34 on the front would be smaller lots and 24 on the back would be acre lots. 

Motion by Manley, second by Pankonin to temporarily adjourn as council at 7:00 p.m. to open public hearing. Ayes: Harris, Manley, Pankonin and Petersen. Nays: none. Motion carried. 

Motion by Petersen, second by Manley to open public hearing on Community Development Block Grant at 7:00 p.m. Ayes: Harris, Manley, Pankonin and Petersen. Motion carried. 

Terry Meier of the Southeast Nebraska Development District addressed the council and audience regarding the Community Development Block Grant. He explained that a public hearing is required for any application that is submitted. The purpose of this hearing is to allow the public to voice their comments on the application itself. This application is for a Community Development Block Grant and Louisville is eligible for up to $25,000 matched at the local level of 25% for the purpose of conducting planning activities based on the size of the community. This specific application is for a Water Supply Study to determine what the needs of the community are, what the viable options are and will allow the city engineer to say these are the alternatives available to the community, this is what the cost is, what the operation and maintenance is going to be and what the most viable solution is. Basically, that is what this study is for, to gather information, evaluate the options and prepare a comprehensive report to present to the community stating what, in their opinion, is the best solution to the problem. It will not in any way deal with drilling test holes. Under the planning category of the block grant program, test holes are not eligible. This is strictly for the engineer to go in and look at existing sites of test wells throughout the area, the possibility of hooking up to MUD water, hooking up to another community to share the cost, looking at different aquifers to tap into and the possibility of a treatment facility. Those costs and options would be included in this study and the cost will be presented to the city council along with the financing sources available to help subsidize the cost to help keep your rates reasonable. A member of the audience asked if this was strictly money or if they would also have the plans. It was explained the grant would provide the funds for JEO to come up with a plan. Terry Meier explained the application is for $9,800 and will be matched at the local level at $3,200 bringing the total project cost to $13,000. This is the first step in order to solve the long-term problem. Before any funding source would come in to actually help drill the well or construct a treatment facility or link to other communities, they will want to see a plan. Terry said that is what this plan will do. It will enable to the city to go after grants and low interest loans in order to implement the long-term solution you feel is most viable. This is a competitive process and just because you do submit an application doesn't mean that you will be given the funding. The grant is through the Nebraska Department of Economic Development and is strictly competitive. Generally, they fund two applications for every three that are submitted. There is a chance that it won't get funded, however, with the Department of Health and Human Services and the engineers saying it is an urgent need, Terry thinks we have a good chance of getting the grant. The city has been extremely successful in the past in obtaining funding for the new sewer plant, the downtown project and housing rehab. Mayor Henry asked for comments from the audience in favor. The audience was in favor of applying for the grant funds. There were no comments against the application. Motion by Manley, second by Pankonin to close the public hearing for the Community Development Block Grant at 7:06 p.m. Ayes: Harris, Manley, Pankonin and Petersen. Nays: none. Motion carried. 

Motion by Petersen, second by Harris, to reconvene city council meeting at 7:06 p.m. Ayes: Harris, Manley, Pankonin and Petersen. Nays: none. Motion carried. 

Terry Meier noted the block grant program does require the council to pass a resolution authorizing the chief elected official to sign the application for the Community Development Block Grant Funds. The resolution identifies how much is being applied for and what the purpose of the study is. Motion by Pankonin, second by Harris to pass Resolution 2001-04 authorizing the chief elected official to sign the application for the Community Development Block Grant Funds for the Water Study. Ayes: Harris, Manley, Pankonin and Petersen. Nays: none. Motion carried. 

Terry Meier took a few moments to explain who the Southeast Nebraska Development District is. The Southeast Nebraska Development District is a voluntary organization, not volunteer, of municipalities and counties throughout the southeast part of the state. At present there are eight counties within the district with Saunders and Seward being the farthest north and anything east and south of Gage and Lancaster counties. Before a municipality can be a member of the Southeast Nebraska Development District, the county must first be a member. All eight counties are dues paying members and they have about 98% of municipalities within those counties are dues paying members. The Southeast Nebraska Development District is basically the Community Development Department for these communities. Louisville alone cannot afford to have one person doing Community Development, nor can Weeping Water, but all the communities combined can have shared staff. They are headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska. If anyone has any questions or comments about any type of funding that is out there, concerns over community development issues, the Southeast Nebraska Development District will help get the community through the process, of planning, funding sources and will help with applications for outside funding also. Applications are prepared free of charge, but communities are asked to pay dues on an annual basis to the organization. Dues are approximately 60 cents per person in the community. The larger the community the higher the dues. Smaller communities benefit from the shared staff. Each community has unlimited number of visits. The staff consists of 13; one secretary, three specifically deal with economic development and remainder deal with housing and community development. Terry stated Cass and Saunders counties are his two largest counties. Dave Pankonin asked if he could come to a meeting and give the council a report in general of what is out there for the city to look at. Terry stated this would be possible and what they do is basically help identify what your needs are through a strategic planning process or community survey and determine what is the most appropriate funding to implement what those are. Basically it is not a complaint driven system, but a needs driven basis. If a community needs a community center, it is their responsibility (SENDD) to find the most appropriate funding source for you. For example, the fire station - after looking around the only source available was the USDA Rural Development. 

Mayor Henry asked if Terry could give the council a rough estimate of what kind of money the city could come up with for the water problem. Terry thought that realistically, the town itself could come up with, if everything was successful and given the urgency of the situation, close to $2,000,000 worth of grants and low interest loans to help fund the project. The low interest loan would be based upon the user rates. They ask you to raise your rates to a reasonable level. Reasonable is defined as 1 and 3/8% of your median household income. Median household income in Louisville is around $24,000 based on the 1990 census, you would be looking at around $28 per month per user. Mayor Henry asked if you take the total number of users and the total amount collected for water bills and as long as it averages the required amount you can qualify. Terry Meier stated this was correct. Mayor Henry asked, about individuals on a fixed income. Terry replied that the $30 would just be multiplied by your number of households and generates so much in dollars. It is an average among all users instead of a per person rate. Mayor Henry stated he thought this would help sell it, because if you use more water you expect to pay for it, but for someone on a fixed income and taking into consideration the natural gas prices and then tell them we need to raise their water rate to a $30 minimum it would be very difficult. Terry responded that of that $30 a vast majority of that would be for operation and maintenance of the water plant. What is left will be for a little bit of reserve, as well as for principal and interest of a low interest loan. Based upon the loan amount you get so much grant money, this is the calculations that are used. Looking back through the numbers, Terry felt Louisville would be eligible for around $2,000,000 or $1.75 million for the construction. Harris asked what the percentage of the grant is to the loan. Terry felt it would be about 55% grant of the total amount. The user rate would be adjusted to reflect the 2000 census figures. Mayor Henry asked what the average water bill was, Jolene Keiter stated their water bill averaged $26 per month. Terry stated you did not need to raise the user rate until you actually get the funding. If you wanted to raise the user rate now, it would help, because you obviously would have to borrow less. Mayor Henry felt the first thing to do was get the new well on line before raising rates. Harris noted in the summer he uses quite a bit of water, but he is willing to pay for it. Terry said at the next meeting he could provide the council with an outline showing what the dollar amounts would be. 

Terry stated the application was due at the end of the month and we should probably hear something within two months, sometime around mid-March. 

Mayor Henry stated that John Tresak from Ameritas would be in the city office on January 26, 2001 to discuss with Candy and himself how the warrant process works and the total bonded indebtedness of the city and further warrants coming due on Main Street. Attorney Johnson explained that a certain amount needs to be kept in reserve when you have bonded indebtedness. The audit has to show a certain amount of cash reserve to offset the bonded indebtedness. Discussion followed on the purpose of warrants and how they usually work and the cash flow position of the city. 

Motion by Petersen, second by Pankonin to approve resolution 2001-05, Street District 98-1, Warrants #99-1-60 for $1,141.65 and $98-1-61 for $11.41 to Ameritas, Prairie Hills District 99-1, Warrants #99-1-19 for $2,375.83 and #99-1-20 for $23.75 to Ameritas. Roll Call Vote: Harris, Aye; Manley, Aye; Pankonin, Aye; Petersen, Aye. Nays: none. Abstain: none. Motion carried. 

Eric Obert was not present for JEO. Mayor Henry updated the council on Well #3. Bids were approved at the December meeting for Layne Western drilling the well. Since the pump was below $10,000 it did not require a bid, so we instructed Eric to negotiate the best deal he could with Layne Western to keep everything the same. The pump and the well will both be put in by Layne Western. Layne Western had sent a letter to JEO stating they would be unable to begin work on the well by January 15, 2001 as they have been unable to take delivery of the well materials. As soon as delivery of the materials is received, they will expedite their crew. Mayor Henry will visit with Eric and ask them to have Layne Western communicate with the city as to when they expect to be able to start. 

Dave Pankonin reported a meeting has been set up with the Nebraska Department of Roads pertaining to the One and Six Year Plan and the Highway 66 Bypass for February 5, 2001 in Senator Roger Wehrbein's office at the State Capital. Bob Copple, Tom Neary from Ash Grove and Dennis Barnes have been invited to attend the meeting. There is also a chance that Dick Stone and Lou Allgayer, Cass County Commissioners will also be attending. Basically, if Louisville does not go with the Fifth Street Bridge project, they will be placed back 15-20 years for the Highway 66 Bypass due to a lack of funding. Dave felt the NDOR was unaware of the ramification of Ash Grove trucks going through town. Dave stated that individuals he has talked to would just as soon not have the Fifth Street Bridge if that is all we can get. Don Harris asked if the trucks going into Ash Grove would turn into town on Fifth Street and go through town to a new entrance into Ash Grove. Dave Pankonin said Ash Grove would prefer to bring the trucks in that way so they would not have to go through the whole plant to get back to where the crusher is. If the Fifth Street Bridge were put in, 130 trucks per day would be going through town. Mayor Henry stated Dave Pankonin and Senator Wehrbein deserve a lot of credit for getting this meeting set up. Discussion followed regarding the disadvantages of having the Fifth Street Bridge put in. The consensus is if the Highway 66 Bypass is not possible, the Fifth Street Bridge should still not be put in. 

Discussion on League of Municipalities Workshop in Lincoln on February 12 and 13, 2001. Motion by Pankonin, second by Petersen to send Greg Manley and Don Harris to the Monday session on February 12 of the League of Municipalities Workshop in Lincoln. Ayes: Harris, Manley, Pankonin, Petersen. Nays: none. Motion carried. 

Mayor Henry stated he would like for Jack Faubion to attend the Waste Water Continuing Education Class in Nebraska City on January 31, 2001. There is no cost to attend the class. 

The post office has been asked to complete a disaster plan in case their building is uninhabitable due to a disaster. They have asked if they can use the Senior Citizen Center. Home State Bank has an agreement with the city to temporarily locate at the Senior Citizen Center in case of a disaster. Motion by Petersen, second by Manley to allow the post office to use the Senior Citizen Center in case of a disaster. Ayes: Harris, Manley, Pankonin, Petersen. Nays: none. Motion carried. 

Discussion on One and Six Year Road Plan. The hearing must be held at the February council meeting and the plan submitted to the state by March 1, 2001. The council can request the representative from JEO attend the hearing. There is concern over the projects listed and the cost involved with those projects. Attorney Johnson noted the plan is to identify street projects that are put on a one-year plan regardless of funding. The six-year plan is a long-term plan. Discussion followed on the South Ridge Subdivision planned by Bob Copple and Dick Berner and the type of streets planned. Phase I would be curb and gutter with storm sewer and Phase II would be asphalt due to the size of the Phase II lots and the lay of the land. Bob Copple and Dick Berner would withstand the entire infrastructure costs and bring that back themselves through the sale of the lots. They would like to get this in place, have the city immediately annex that and have it become part of the city. Discussion followed regarding concern over the close location of the lots to the old City Dump and the use of asphalt.

Further discussion followed regarding building specifications currently in force, covenants, the comprehensive plan and procedure for building permits. Concern was noted over the types of homes built in the South Ridge Subdivision. 

Motion by Petersen, second by Harris to adjourn at 8:20 p.m. Ayes: Harris, Manley, Pankonin and Petersen. Nays: none. Motion Carried.

I, the undersigned clerk, hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and correct copy of the proceedings had and done by the Mayor and City Council of Louisville to the best of my knowledge, that the agenda was kept continually current and available for public inspection; and that the minutes were in written form and available for public inspection within 10 working days; the minutes are published in summary form, upon request a complete copy if available at the City Hall.

Candace J. McClun
Clerk/Treasurer


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