The first Nichols council meeting of 2014 was held Wednesday, Jan. 8. There was a lot on the agenda for the new year.
First, Mayor Geertz welcomed two new members to the council, Kelsie Lampe and Kelly Loving, as well as returning members Russ Grim and Jamie Kirk. Cindy Massey, the third new member, who was sworn in Saturday, Dec. 21, was absent.
The Consent Agenda was approved.
Wastewater Manager Tim McCleary was not present to address a problem with a manhole cover at the corner of Broadway and Ijem. Council member Kirk mentioned that it was in need of attention. It's loose and a hazard to traffic and to people walking. He will call Mr. McCleary and report on the problem.
Police Chief Jeff Jirak reported that a grant that was available last year, and used for ATVs during the October Festival, would not be available this year. Chief Jirak also noted that 10 year veteran, Officer Wegler, would be back on duty in Nichols, as needed.
Fire Chief Russ Grim reported that the new air packs are in, but not in use yet. There is still some training to be completed by the firemen for qualification.
Bids are now being accepted by the City of Nichols for lawn mowing, trimming and weeding of city-owned properties. The 2014 mowing season is listed as "March through October." Bids are due by Friday, Feb. 7, and may be mailed to the city or presented to the City Clerk or to Mayor Geertz at Pike Run Services.
Contractors will be required to have all necessary equipment to complete the needed tasks, provide a certificate of insurance and to provide references.
The city will be selling the city-owned mower for $2500. The selected contractor will have first option to buy this mower. If that contractor decides not to purchase it, it will be sold on a ‘first-come’ basis.
The winning bid will be announced at the Feb. 12 city council meeting.
Under new business the following appointments were made; Jeff Jirak, Police Chief; Sue Schlapkohl, Clerk/Treasurer; Amber Freyermuth of Stanley, Lande, & Hunter, City Attorney; Mayor Geertz appointed Russ Grim as Mayor Pro-Tem; The West Liberty Index was chosen as the official paper of publication for the City of Nichols.
A first reading occurred for Ordinance 14-1, to amend city codes, and Ordinance 14-2, to amend Chapter 75, which includes a penalty for submitting bad checks to the city for any payments due. A $15.00 fee will be charged, and if it happens more than once, no personal checks will be accepted from the offending party.
The second and third readings of the above ordinances were waived by voice vote, and both ordinances were approved by council.
A draft for the long awaited Fringe Area Agreement was explained and discussed before being approved by the council. It will now go back to the city attorney, who will present it to the Muscatine County Board of Supervisors. Amber Freyermuth will be at the February meeting with a more complete explanation.
The L.L. Pelling bid for materials to seal coat the city streets was accepted. The council is going to check with other firms to see if there is any interest in bidding for this job; however, Pelling has done an excellent job in the years they’ve been taking care of the city’s streets.
Mayor Geertz has decided not to call a ‘work session’ to discuss the upcoming city budget, but will plan on discussing it at the February Council Meeting on Feb. 12.
Questions concerning the mowing bid may be directed to Mayor Cyle Geertz at 319-723-4244 (Pike Run Services) or the City Clerk at 723-4424, or email Nichols@iowatelecom.net.
Nichols gets busyToni Wilson · Wednesday, January 22, 2014