June 6, 2017 .
Hot Springs Senior Center
CALL TO ORDER: 7:05 pm by Mayor Woods
ROLL CALL: Present- Woods, Smith, Neary, Adams, Whitsett, Gray
Also Present: Chief of police Stuart Smith
Community Members: Steven Sheffield, Linda Landrum, Izzy Cramer, Paul Stelter, Bob Woods, Jeanine Woods, Jay Erchul, Don Woods, Carolyn Woods, Chuck Haan,
APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES- Smith/ Adams Pass 4-0 with changes Woods stated that draft minutes will be posted on the window and the website
FINANCIAL REPORTS- Adams/ Smith Pass 4-0
PRESENTATION OF CLAIMS- Smith/Adams Pass 4-0
MAYOR-Mayor Woods comment that he is always speaking that we want people to come together and it bothered him that it was brought up at the last council meeting about rich people in town always getting their way. He stated we are here to do what is best for the people even if it means voting for something we don’t like. We need to stick together and help our neighbors as a community and work together to make our community a better place.
PUBLIC WORKS- Mayor Woods gave a report on Public Works stating it has been a very busy month for them. The school bought a radar sign and the town needs to get it installed, Public works has been working very hard, there was a line that had been vandalized (filled with brillo pads and clothing) and it had plugged the system and took quite a while to get it cleared out. He reminded people that you HAVE to call in to Town Hall if you want to be included in town clean up and get your name on the list or your stuff will not be picked up.
Reminder cards will be sent out to remind people to keep their weeds and grass cut.
FIRE DEPT- 2 grass fires, power pole on fire, 2 motor vehicle accidents
POLICE- written report provided and presented by Chief of Police Stuart Smith
COUNCIL-Bob Neary asked if we had done three readings on the ordinance to change the wording in the ordinance book from Wards to Seats, Clerk explained to him that it was a Resolution, not an ordinance therefore it did not require 3 readings and because it had been voted on by the people it was changed by Resolution.
Mary Whitsett- said she agrees with Randy that nobody should make any assumptions based on if they have money, but said that her point was not to give to the poor take from the rich, then discussed cases where trees and lilac bushes were not allowed, or when a trailer that was not in compliance had to be moved, then Mary stated “when you see things going on and you are trying to figure out what’s the differentiating factor here, and Randy is absolutely correct when he says that the level of income in this town is notably below probably the poverty line and you notice that what distinguishes this person is that they seem to have money and they seem to be ok with doing something that other people aren’t allowed to do and you are trying to figure out why this guy and not these other people? And so should we rewrite the ordinance… People have questions and if they don’t know why something is happening they make up well is it because of this, is it because of that, it’s the way people are.”
CLERK-explained police funding survey that was included in packet that it was just informational sent from Scobey, will be attending budget training June 8th
LIBRARY- written report provided and presented by Linda
ZONING COMPLIANCE OFFICER-nothing new reported
PARKS/RECREATION BOARD-nothing new reported
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE- Leslee Smith reported that Topic of most recent Chamber meeting was Homesteader days, the school will have a good summer program for kids, and swimming lessons for the kids will be in at the Polson Pool and the school will be bussing kids to Polson. Community member Chuck Haan inquired about other businesses participating in paying for street dance and open container costs.
ARTIST SOCIETY- Leslee Smith reported Next meeting will be June 8th 6:00 pm at Wall Street Place
MUSEUM-Leslee Smith reported that the Museum will host swap meet with music August 5th at the Rodeo grounds, Dick Adams reported that a platform scale from 1905 or so was donated from Ray Jogenson yard sale to the museum
HOT SPRINGS COMMUNITY AWARENESS- David max not present to present report
COMMUNICATIONS/PUBLIC COMMENT AGENDA ITEMS
Citizen asked about claims, wanted a reading of the list of claims. Mayor Woods explained the list of claims is available as Town Hall at any time, and read through the list of claims to the woman.
SEWER PROJECT UPDATE – Mayor Woods reported that the sewer project was supposed to go to bid in March but that the DEQ review was supposed to be completed in 60 days and was not. Montana State law requires that the we are approved by DEQ. We will not be able to move forward until the review is complete and the project has been approved by DEQ.
DISCUSSION ORDINANCE ENFORCEMENT –Discussion only, no vote
Richard Adams stated he put this on the agenda because he wants to keep it on the forefront stating we have to have ordinances, it is the rules of having a town and we have all kinds of ordinances and we have very little enforcement. Adams asked Mary Whtisett if she wanted to enforce the ordinances and she replied “not all of them.” Adams asked Bob Neary if we should enforce the ordinances and Bob replied that the ones where someone has been directly impacted or that involve public safety should have priority. When Adams asked “so you think we should enforce our ordinances?” Neary’s reply was “what’s the purpose of having them?” (if we don’t enforce them)Adams asked Leslee Smith if she wanted to enforce the ordinances and she replied “yes we need to enforce our ordinances” Adams stated he agreed with Smith. Adams asked the community members and Paul Stelter commented that the ordinances should be reviewed and if they are not enforceable, they should not be on the books.
Mayor Woods explained that he does not create the ordinances, they are created by the council.
Bob Neary asked what is stopping ordinance enforcement right now, Mayor Woods stated he sees zoning violations and he tells staff to go take care of it, and staff is not falling through with it. Do we fire staff or write them up for not enforcing them. He also said that you write people letters, they come sit in the council meeting upset or angry and then the council waffles on it and mayor looks like the bad guy. Council makes the rules, not the Mayor. Woods believes in property rights and you should be able to do what want to do on your property as long as it doesn’t affect your neighbors. Property owners should not be able to build on the people’s property and your neighbor’s property because they have the rights too, you shouldn’t be encroaching into other property.
Neary commented that we may not be ready to come down with a strong hammer but that we are moving in a direction with new people coming in and we should have a vision for it. The main thing is to get a vibrant economy here and maybe the neighbor helping neighbor program (Rooster program) would be a good thing.
Adams- How are we going to enforce the ordinances?
Woods- Council which is Legistlative branch and they make the rule, Mayor enforces them and when upset people come to the meeting Council needs to be ready to stand by the ordinances.
Neary- Where do we start? We need to stop the violations before it starts. MCA refers to public health and safety Neary thinks we need to start where it has to do with public health and safety and also when we have written complaints, Also thinks we need to have public input and do a survey.
Mary Whitsett expressed that she thinks there needs to be more than one complaint and that it needs to be offensive to more than one person.
Woods- If you are going to start on this, you need to start on things that are set in stone.
CDS AT VALLEY BANK- Smith made a motion to cash out the cd’s as recommended by the bank and roll all three of them into 48 month CDs. Adams second. Clerk spoke with Peg Winebrenner at Valley Bank and was told there will be no penalty to cash them out at this time and roll them into 48 month CDs to increase interest rate and also said that in the event that we need to cash them out early there will be no penalty. Pass 4-0
CHANGE DATE OF REGULAR TOWN COUNCIL MEETING IN JULY – Motion to change meeting date to July 11th due to July 4th being a holiday. Smith/Neary Pass 4-0
RESOLUTION 2017-008R DESIGNATE THE ENVIRONMENTAL CERTIFYING OFFICER- Smith/Whitsett Pass 4-0
RESOLUTION 2017-009R STIPEND FOR FIRE CHIEF- Bob Neary asked if Randy had 3 cell phone, no he does not. Neary also asked about volunteer status if Woods was to receive a stipend with payroll withheld, Woods explained that it would not affect volunteer status and explained that this was recommended by the auditor to proceed this way. Adams/Smith Pass 4-0
EMPLOYEE PAY- Mayor Woods explained that he believed pay raises should be performance based and explained that he felt Ruben Loberg has really stepped up with Sierra being out all this time and that he has been doing much of the public works job over the past 6 months by himself. He comes in when asked early, nights and weekends. Proposed to give him $1.00 per hour pay increase from $14.22 to $15.22. Also, Amy Gray 6 month probation is up and was discussed at hire about a possible pay increase. Amy has stepped up and is doing a good job for the town. Proposed $1.00 per hour pay increase from $11.50 to $12.50. Pay increase had already been included in the budget for both positions
Smith/ Adams to give raises to Amy and Ruben. Richard Adams stated it wasn’t enough. pass 4-0
OPEN CONTAINER AND STREET CLOSURE FOR HOMESTEADERS- Smith/ Adams Mayor Woods asked for signage about rules for no glass bottles. Plastic cups and cans only. Pass 4-0
BUDGET COMMITTEE- Report on progress from Mayor Woods- moving along, budget actually looks pretty good at this point and all funds appear to be ok. Discussion only
COMMUNICATIONS/PUBLIC COMMENT NON-AGENDA ITEMS
Mary Whitsett present visual aid poster board asking for no u-turn signs. She also spoke of safety in town and stated that feeding and bating bears is illegal. She expressed concern about bears getting in the garbage.
ADJOURN: 9:04 pm Neary/Adams Pass 4-0