Meeting Minutes

April 9, 2003


A regular meeting of the City Council of the City of Louisville was held on Wednesday, April 9, 2003, at 7:00 p.m. at the City Hall. Present were Mayor Dave Pankonin, Council Members –Clete Petrzilka, Steve Sherman, Joe Smisek and J. Alan Mueller. Also present were City Attorney Roger Johnson and several 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 acknowledgement 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.

Mayor Pankonin called the meeting to order and asked the council to review the consent agenda. Smisek moves, Petrzilka seconds to approve the consent agenda. Roll call vote: ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. 

Petrzilka moves, Sherman seconds to open the public hearing on a home occupation request at Lot 1, Eastwood Addition at 7:02 p.m. Ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. The zoning at that lot is R-1 and an accessory use permit is necessary to open a massage business owned by Julie Hendricks. She was present and stated that the business is regulated by the state and parking shouldn’t be a problem as she only has one client at a time. Dave said that a hearing had already been held for the planning commission and they recommended the home occupation to the council. Sherman stated that he knows the state is strict on the rules for this type of business. No other public comment was made. Petrzilka moves, Sherman seconds to close the public hearing at 7:05 p.m. Ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried.

Petrzilka moves, Smisek seconds to open the public hearing on a Class J Liquor License request from Group LLC dba Gambino’s Pizza at 7:06 p.m. Ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. A Class J is wine and beer on premises only. No public comments or objections were made. Smisek moves, Mueller seconds to close the public hearing at 7:07 p.m. Ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. 

There was a written report in the council packets from the clerk regarding clerk school. She presented an idea for an improved council packet which is better organized and easier to use. Also a yearly calendar for standing items on the agenda as a reminder is being worked on to keep regularly in the council packets. The council liked the idea so the clerk will begin using those next month. Another idea she learned at school is an expanded consent agenda, but she realized the attorney had a problem with the idea so that will be discussed later. She also took a moment to explain the claims list to the newest council members and to let them know if they ever have any questions to just ask the clerk. The clerk let the council know that the auditor will be at the next meeting, so they have a month to look over the financial statement and come up with questions. She ended her report with a thank you to all the council members for their support. 

Sandy from the sheriff’s department was present and in order to accommodate her and get her back to her duties, she was asked to give her report first. A written report was given to the Mayor and he asked her specifically to address certain items on the agenda. The first item brought up was security on Main Street. Steve stated that a few business owners had commented that maybe extra patrol could be discussed for weekends on Main Street and also in the new addition where new construction attracts vandalism. The business owners thought above and beyond the sheriff might be necessary. The Mayor’s initial reaction was that was why the city had a contract with the sheriff. With summer coming, Sandy said she could put out an e-mail to the deputies for extra patrol in the evening hours. The skateboard problem on Main Street was also discussed. Mayor Pankonin asked Sandy if they could crack down on this matter. She stated that one deputy has three skateboards in his trunk. She said the city has a street game ordinance if the city wanted to go to those extremes, they could be cited. The council tossed around the idea of issuing tickets. It was agreed that it has gone on long enough and they have been warned and that it is time to issue tickets and they will be taken to juvenile court if under 16. Safety is definitely an issue as well as property damage. Sandy asked if the tennis court was off limits to the skateboard because she has heard conflicting stories. Mayor Pankonin stated it is the council’s preference they be allowed to skateboard at the park as opposed to Main Street. 

Animal control was then discussed and the Mayor told Sandy he understood that this subject is not in the contact with the sheriff unless the dog is dangerous. This is the number one complaint issue in the city. Roger stated that Plattsmouth has its own humane officer and pound. This officer is appointed and empowered to issue citations. Alan asked the deputy what is the standard policy on dangerous dogs. Sandy said according to statute, the dog has to prove itself to be vicious before the sheriff’s office can do anything. There is a dangerous dog form that can be issued if the dog has bit someone or is aggressive in nature or threatening. This form then goes in a file at the office and if that dog turns around and bites someone, these people have been notified they have a dangerous dog and they failed to contain it. That opens them up for all sorts of liabilities and charges. Some people who get these notices get rid of the dog because they could be liable for civil suits. Roger suggested a dangerous dog confinement ordinance which states that once the owner is given the notice of a dangerous dog then they are obligated to kennel the dog in a fashion that the kennel has to have a top that’s connected to the side and the sides have to be imbedded into the ground. Sandy stated that they have found that people want to call in to complain, but they don’t want their name mentioned. Therefore, you don’t have a witness who will testify in court. The chances of a deputy driving up and seeing the violation are slim to none. The ordinance above doesn’t help the dogs just running around either. The clerk reported what she learned about Weeping Water’s resolution of this problem. They contracted with an individual to catch running dogs, paid per dog and they are taken directly to the Humane Society in Omaha. The Society in turn contacts the owner if possible and they are responsible to retrieve the dog. The city gets nothing monetarily from this process, just less dogs running the streets. Pat Mood was present as a concerned citizen. She is willing to catch some dogs and take them to the humane society. She said she would need a few items to help her do this job, such as a live animal trap for the smaller animals, a pole with rope on the end and a large crate to transport. The Mayor verified that she wanted the city to purchase some of these items and she would take the animals for $40/dog and $30/smaller animals to the humane society. The city attorney stated that there would need to be a contract for this sort of service. The other option would be to hire her as an employee. Mayor Pankonin asked Pat what kind of time she could commit to this. She said she has a part time job now. The pros and cons for the options were discussed. There was some discussion from residents regarding a dog in Prairie Hill that has already been issued a dangerous dog form, and it was verified that the said animal was out again last night. The kids in the neighborhood are scared to be outside. Sandy encouraged anyone who has been bitten to report it to the sheriff. Roger stated if you go the route of an employee that issues citations, those fines go to the school. A letter from the city at the pet clinic this weekend with copies of ordinances seems to be a good idea. The concerned citizen from Prairie Hill said she would not like to wait a month before the city decides what to do. Something has to be done now. Mayor Pankonin said he could contact that particular owner. Sandy said some towns have the maintenance men catch the dogs or take pictures of the dogs running at large and issuing citations. Smisek moves, Sherman seconds to direct Mayor Pankonin to call the particular dog owners in Prairie Hill, have the clerk write a letter to distribute at the pet clinic and have Roger look into stricter ordinance for dangerous dogs with kenneling procedures. Ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. 

There was a request from Coop de Ville in the council packets to hold three parking spaces in front of the store for approximately 2 hours on April 19, 2003 between 10 and noon for an Easter Bonnet Parade. Jeff Power has given his approval as a neighboring business owner. Dan said there are barricades so it would be no problem to temporarily close that area. Sherman moves, Petrzilka seconds to allow the parking spaces to be closed as described for Coop de Ville. Ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. 

James Stewart from Louisville High School presented Lucas Schroeder as the Vice-president of the National Honor Society to address the council for the Society and the Student Council. Lucas had a power point presentation to explain what the groups would like to do for a community service project. They propose a repair and update of the city park tennis and basketball courts. They would like to paint the entire area, repair the fence, build benches, replace nets and add other items. The benefits would be safety and help the community to look better. They had approximate prices for the entire project. They would like to have financial help and the support of the council. Mayor Pankonin thanked the group for coming and thanked them for their interest in this project. Lucas was asked if this project could be completed by the end of the school year and he told the council he believed it could be done. Mayor Pankonin told the group again about the number one problem on Main Street is skateboarding and the council’s idea to shuffle them over to the park. The idea of half court basketball and the other half skateboard equipment was discussed. Lucas said they would be open to any ideas the council had. The clerk was asked to show the park budget numbers to the council. Deb Cunningham from the JayCees said they had talked about skateboard equipment and it’s terribly expensive. She asked whether that many people use the tennis court. She thought maybe that end would be more appropriate for the skateboard equipment. The clerk had a request this week to get the net back up on the tennis court. Dan Henry said there was some maintenance work that needed to be done as far as raking and asked if the students would be willing to help. Deb said the JayCees have a park cleanup day planned. She also said there were businesses willing to donate flowers and perhaps the students could coordinate with different groups. Deb also said the JayCees have the poles for the horseshoe pit. Mayor Pankonin gave a rundown of the unexpended budget. There is approximately $1000 left in maintenance and repair. Sherman moves, Mueller seconds to allow the National Honor Society/Student Council to spend up to $1000 in coordination with City Supervisor, Dan Henry on park repair and maintenance. Roll call vote; ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. 

Smisek moves, Petrzilka seconds to approve the Class J Liquor License for Group LLC dba Gambino’s Pizza. Roll call vote; ayes – 3, Mueller – abstain. Motion carried. 

Code book update bids were opened by the city attorney, Roger Johnson. The first was from Municipal Code Services from Neligh, NE. for $6,250.00. The second bid was from American Legal Publishing in the amount of $8,950.00 plus extra for binders, expenses for coming to meetings and per page if over 380 pages. Mueller moves, Sherman seconds to direct Roger to review the bids and report back with his recommendation. Ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. 

Trash receptacles were the next item on the agenda. Deb Cunningham called Dale Slagel at Waste Management to ask if they have attractive containers. Dale had an idea but needed time to look into the matter and hadn’t had a chance to get back to Deb. It’s a possibility they could be donated by Waste Management. Sherman moves, Petrzilka seconds to table until the next meeting. Ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. 

A housing rehab proposal from SENAHC was in the council packets for review. Smisek moves, Sherman seconds to approve the proposal from SENAHC to use city rehab funds for this project. Roll call vote; ayes – 3, Mueller – abstain. Motion carried. 

The next subjects talked about were Errol Meisinger easements. Dan Henry stated he had visited with Errol regarding property east of Taylor Quik Pik. There is a sewer line and a water line that goes over the edge of Errol’s property slightly. Roger just got the information and is waiting for legal descriptions of the areas of concern to prepare an easement. The temporary and permanent easements for Errol’s property at Eastwood for the East Water Main are signed.

Eric Obert from JEO was present to talk about a new water tower for Louisville. He had a report prepared for the council. There were maps with GIS information overlaid on an aerial map of the city. Examples of existing conditions and alternatives were included. The pressure in town is a major concern, wanting more in some areas but not too much in others. 40 to 60 pounds is low normal, 60 to 100 is acceptable high, normal. Anything over 100 psi is a worry. Eric went over the alternatives, each having different locations and height of the tower producing different results. Eric’s recommendation is alternative one which is 500 feet south of existing tower, 40 psi at the elevation of 1230; a pedestal design holding 400,000 gallons. This will cause a need to install a number of pressure reducing valves in the homes of existing residents and businesses. From the financial standpoint, $250,000 is available from CDBG to be used on the entire water project. The rest could be bonded at a very favorable rate. Taking down the old tower was discussed. In Eric’s opinion, there are companies out there who will take it down and haul it off for nothing. A timeline on this project would be a completion date, at best, fall of 2004. Mayor Pankonin suggested the council study the report for further discussion. 

Alan asked Eric about engineering fees for the east water main project which were a high percentage of the total cost. Eric stated there was a tremendous amount of survey work as well as establishing a state right of way. There was also coordination between several different property owners. Another item to note was that the bids came in much lower than expected. Eric will check into the matter. 

Deb Cunningham reported for the JayCees. Louisville Daz plans are progressing and Deb appreciates all the cooperation from the city council. She asked if the snow fence for the dance could be extended. The council said no problem. She stated that the JayCees have taken all the measurements at the senior citizen basement. She wondered if the council wanted price comparisons for carpet and tile/linoleum throughout. Or could they presume the council wants tile in the kitchen and bathroom areas. It seemed to be the consensus of the council to keep those areas tiled and the big rooms carpeted. 

Sherman moves, Petrzilka seconds to approve the Home Occupation accessory use for Lot 1, Eastwood Addition as recommended by the planning commission. Roll call vote; ayes – 3, Mueller – abstain. Motion carried.

The council was provided with the Lower Platte River Utility District Interlocal Agreement. Mayor Pankonin recapped the proposed agreement which puts emphasis on a regional water/wastewater district. The region goes from Louisville to Ashland and south to about Murdock. The growth potential could be double or even triple in the next 10 years. South Bend has a water problem, Louisville has a water need and Ashland has sewer needs. Regional districts are the way of the future because it pools resources. Paul McManis was present from the county commissioners. Some options discussed were a well field at South Bend or connecting to MUD at Springfield. The interested parties have a draft of the agreement to study and discuss. Any questions need to be brought back to the next meeting on May 19, at Camp Kitaki. Roger will go over the agreement because in his first reading of it, financing was a concern. He will get his questions and concerns to Dave before the upcoming meeting. 

Dan reported that Ash Grove is compiling information regarding a new, 4” water line on 2nd Street to facilities towards the back of Ash Grove. The ordinance setting water rates states water to customers outside the city limits is 150% and that cannot be changed once the process has begun. 

Dan also reported that Pat McManis had requested payment for the use of the old dump to burn brush back in 1999 and 2000. She had stated there was an agreement with the city for half the proceeds of the dump were to go to her and she never got paid. The file was just found so some more information needs to be gathered. 

Mayor Pankonin appoints Dan Henry as zoning administrator. Sherman moves to approve the nomination, Mueller seconds. Roll call vote; ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. 

Mayor Pankonin appoints Dan Henry as building inspector. Sherman moves, Mueller seconds to approve the nomination. Roll call vote; ayes – 4, nays – none. Motion carried. 

Councilmember Mueller had the item of refinancing the bond debt put on the agenda. Mayor Pankonin thanked Alan for taking the initiative to look into the matter. Alan talked to bond counsel and was told it wouldn’t be feasible at this time. The bond counsel suggested paying down the debt so Alan had the clerk make a report of current CD’s in the sewer fund which was presented to the council. Alan said this was something that didn’t need to be decided right away, but something to think about; prepay the debt with cd’s where the interest in only paying 2% on a bond that the city is paying 4.75% interest. Dan stated he didn’t think there were any upcoming expenses in the sewer fund. There were some questions as to the procedure to do such a payment. 

The local sales tax money is in a savings account and Alan thought perhaps taking the economic development portion of that account and putting it into a cd. Dan was asked about upcoming street repairs that need to be made, which is the other half of the sales tax money. The city is getting a lot of calls on Walnut Street. Some other specific streets were mentioned and Dan asked the council if they knew of any places that need attention. Dan’s prediction is $35,000 to $40,000 this year on street repair. Dan would like a couple council members drive around with him to determine where they would like repairs made. Then he can come up with more accurate numbers. Mayor Pankonin would also like the clerk to work on a ledger to separate the sales tax account between street repair and economic development. 

Building permit fees were discussed. A resident recently came in to get a permit for a new furnace and air conditioner. The deputy clerk charged him the miscellaneous fee of $50 because that was how she was trained. It was verified that if no structural changes were made then a permit is not necessary. If the resident were to go in and add or change duct work, then a permit would be needed. 

There was no report from the fire/rescue department. 

Dan reported for water/wastewater/maintenance. He gave a brief recap of where the city is at on the copper corrosion control process. Hawkins will be here the 16th and 17th to install the equipment. It needs to be up and running by the 30th of May to be in compliance with the state. He also stated the well and tower are running fine. The tower was cleaned yesterday and water was pumped directly into the mains during the cleaning. The hydrants will be flushed one more time before the chemical injections start. The repair on the bridge at 6th Street is going well with about $3,000 expended so far. There needs to be another length of guard rail put in and some riprap on the bank to stabilize. Approximately $1,500 more in cost is projected. Dan would like to see the dirt settle more before the riprap put on. Mayor Pankonin has had a lot of compliments on the work. OPPD moved some light poles in the area of the bridge. There was discussion on the bridge on South Depot Street. Mayor Pankonin complimented Dan on the amount of work being done and he felt the city supervisor position is working out well.

Dan reported that the library roof project will start April 23. Dan went over all the preliminary work with the project manager from A-Lert Roofing including electrical, gas line, chimney removal, if possible, and logistics. The project should take about 2 weeks. 

There were no reports from the Senior Center or the MAC Committee.

Mayor Pankonin attended the Care Center meeting last night and reported that they had discussed the consultant’s survey. 

Mayor Pankonin reported that the BUILD Committee is working on a walking trail. 

Petrzilka moves, Sherman seconds to adjourn the meeting at 10:08 p.m. Ayes – 4, 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 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 is available at City Hall.

Dee Arias
City Clerk 

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