Belle Plaine City Council met Sept. 1 at the community center

Belle Plaine, Iowa

September 1, 2021

The Belle Plaine City Council met on September 1, 2021, at 6:00 p.m. at the Belle Plaine Community Center to allow for social distancing, with Mayor Dave Fish presiding. Present: Mary Pech, Judy Schlesselman, Mitch Malcolm and Garrett Landuyt. Mark Tegeler was absent. Also present: City Administrator Stephen Beck, Assistant City Attorney Gage Kensler and City Clerk Jacki McDermott. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

Motion by Landuyt to approve the consent agenda consisting of the council minutes of August 18, 2021, receiving and filing of the minutes from the August 24, 2021 meeting of the Belle Plaine Community Library Board of Trustees and bills received, seconded by Malcolm. On roll call, all voted aye. Motion carried.

Residents Comments: None.

Librarian Kristi Sorensen gave a report of the library activities for the year. With COVID-19, statistics were down. The numbers are up again now, and staff members would still be happy to bag up books for patrons. There were no summer programs last year and this year they have had small groups of children with no outside performers. Staff members had bags of materials for the children to check out. Story time has started again, and the library also had a book sale and a blood drive. They had brickwork done to the front of the library and will be erecting a statue of a boy and a statue of a girl. They are working on other ideas to spend grant money on projects for the front of the building including a seating area and a plug-in station. They also received COVID funds that were used for four new computers, a kiosk for the card catalog, a speaker system for outside and an I-Pad.

Motion by Schlesselman, seconded by Pech to approve Resolution #21-09-01 a resolution that approves the financial institutions the City of Belle Plaine uses as depositories. On roll call vote, all voted aye, motion carried.

Motion by Malcolm, seconded by Pech to extend the date of completion for the rehabilitation of the property at 408 13th Street. The date was extended until October 1st with a report on the progress due at that time. On roll call vote, all voted aye, motion carried.

Motion by Landuyt, seconded by Malcolm, to approve renewal of the Class E liquor license (LE) #0002786, Class B Wine Permit, Class C Beer Permit, Class C Beer Permit (carry out) and Sunday sales for Casey’s General Store #3513 at 606 13th Street. On roll call vote, all voted aye, motion carried.

Motion by Schlesselman, seconded by Pech to approve a Belle Plaine Business Incentive Grant to Spotlight Studios at 727 12th Street for up to $4,500. If the amount is wrong, the council will revote on the amount. On roll call vote, all voted aye, motion carried.

Motion by Pech, seconded by Landuyt to approve the first reading of Ordinance 28, an ordinance that amends the Code of Ordinances for the City of Belle Plaine dealing with the use of city owned property and requiring permits to plant trees on the right of way. On roll call vote, all voted aye, motion carried.

Motion by Malcolm, seconded by Pech to approve the first reading of Ordinance 151, an ordinance that amends the Code of Ordinances for the City of Belle Plaine dealing with trees. On roll call vote, all voted aye, motion carried.

The City Administrator, Stephen Beck, reported that he has obtained a LED paddle for the school crossing guards to hold up as a stop sign on Highway 21. They are still waiting on a decision about the future of the stoplights. He has been working with the Union Pacific Railroad to clean up debris on the railroad right-of-way created by the derecho. The railroad says they will be removing trees south of the tracks. Beck has also been working with the DNR on a tree grant and is trying to get from $5,000 to $15,000 worth of trees. He is also working with the water department on running Well #6 and has had zero complaints about the water. The wellfield has had a rebound of about one foot and Brandon Pierce, the water operator, is checking levels once per week. Beck reported he is working on an RFP for the demolition of the church on lower 8th Avenue and the house on 16th Street that the city owns. In other news, FEMA has given the city a new representative to work with in the future on derecho projects. Also, Beck has been working with Dorsey Whitney Law Firm to establish a TIF agreement/ Urban Renewal Zone. All known water leaks have been repaired and hydrants need to be flushed as soon as possible.

The Assistant City Attorney reported on the sewer basin project that has gone to court. The City of Belle Plaine proposed an offer to the company that built the basin (WRH) and the City has been given no answer; however, they did file for summary judgement and the City resisted.

Mayor Dave Fish reported that Iowa County Development and Benton Development Group are working as an economic team for two years and are hiring an assistant for Director Kate Robertson. The assistant will be based in Iowa County. The office for Iowa County is in the mall at Williamsburg and they are seeking a place in Benton County.

Mayor Fish reported that at the meeting of the Benton County Landfill Commission that he attended they are planning for a new cell. He said that his meeting for East Central Iowa Council of Governments (ECICOG) is back to Zoom meetings because of confirmed cases of COVID-19 for ECICOG staff members. The Mayor also told the council that the burning ban has been lifted. They are working on water restrictions, hopefully they can be lifted next week.

Correspondence: None.

Old Business: None.

Resident Comments: None

Motion by Landuyt to adjourn the meeting, seconded by Malcolm. On roll call, all voted aye. Meeting adjourned at 7:37 p.m.

Dave Fish, Mayor

Attest: Jacki McDermott, City Clerk

Transcribed by the City Clerk subject to Council approval

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