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City Council votes for 4 percent increase for city employees

July 15, 2009
Traer Star-Clipper

The Traer City Council held their regular meeting Monday, July 6, 7:00 p.m. at the Traer Municipal Hall. Attending the meeting was Mayor Russell Drinovsky, council members Patty Guzman, Mark Mason, Ray Mundt and Jake Schmitt. Council member Lou Rausch was absent.

A motion was made by Mundt and seconded by Schmitt to approve the agenda. The motion was approved unanimously with a roll call vote.

A motion was made by Guzman to approve the minutes of the June 1 meeting. Mason seconded the motion and the motion carried.

A motion was made by Mason to approve the July account payables and checks numbering 20714-20723 in the amount of $110,504.81. Mundt seconded the motion and the motion carried.

The council discussed the applications up for renewal this month. Council member Mundt requested that the two licenses be voted on separately. A motion was made by Mason the the liquor license for Gas-N-Grub be approved. Guzman seconded the motion and the motion carried with an roll call vote.

A motion was made by Schmitt, seconded by Mason, that the liquor license for the Windup be approved. Council member Guzman noted that there have been numerous complaints about violations and the number of police calls to the Windup Lounge. She Wanted the discussion to serve as a warning to the owners that they need to follow the rules. A vote was then held, Guzman abstained, Schmitt and Mason voted yes and Mundt voted no. The motion did not pass.

A special meeting will be held so all the council members may vote on this license. The special meeting is planned for Monday, July 13 at 4:30 p.m.

A motion was made by Mason to approve the cigarette permits for Gas-N-Grub, Wieck Bros., Traer Short Stop and Traer Supermarket. Mundt seconded the motion and the motion carried with Schmitt abstaining from the Wieck Bros. permit.

Teresa O'Meara and Secondary Principal Steve Foster, representing North Tama Schools, came to the council requesting option tax funds for the new "Character Counts" program being initiated next year. The funds would be primarily for start-up materials for the program. A motion was made by Guzman and seconded by Mundt to approve $5,000 for the school program. The motion carried.

Jared Bauch, representing the Traer Shaker Gallery Committee, came to the council to request option tax funds to help cover costs that were previously incurred when the building was first moved to Traer. There are some local businesses that are still owed funds from that work. Bau ch requested $15, 000, which would cover the overdue bills, plus provide some cushion. the council discussed the amounts due, and the fact that the building, which was donated by Pioneer, actually belongs to the city, which means that the city would ultimately responsible. A motion was made by Mason and seconded by Mundt to award only the $8,500 needed to pay the old bills. The motion was approved.

Bauch, representing the Traer Development Corp., also reminded the council that they would be a payment required in October for the land swapped for the industrial park south of town. He hoped the council would make the payment when it was due. There was no formal action taken on this matter.

The council discussed a request by Mike Skopec to install stop signs on Toledo Street, at the intersection of Walnut Street. A motion was made by Guzman, seconded by Mundt to install a temporary stop sign. The motion carried.

The Winding Stairs Committee was on hand to request the council to allow Linn, Elm, Taylor and Crestview Streets be closed for the Kid's Triathlon on Saturday, Aug. 8. A motion was made by Mundt, seconded by Mason to approved the request and the motion carried.

Mike McKinney, representing the Chamber Cruise, requested permission to close parts of Elm and Linn Streets of the Cruise Aug. 22. A motion was made by Schmitt to approve the request, Mundt seconded and the motion carried.

The council also discussed the issue of "exotic" animals (snakes) in town. City Clerk Panfil informed the council that there was a state regulation regarding exotic animals, and that the council could decide if they want to make any ordinances when the code book is updated later this year. No formal action was taken at this time.

A motion was made by Schmitt and seconded by Mundt to approve a 4 percent raise to city employees John Novak ($18.93/hr), Chris Cooper ($16.49/hr.) and Martin Herker ($32,058.62 annual salary). The motion also included accepting funds from Traer Municipal Utilities to pay wages to Cooper while on Leave of absence (funds are from vacation/sick pay donated by TMU employees). The motion was approved.

City Clerk Panfil and Street Superintendent Novak updated the council on the street projects to be completed this summer. There will be at least two more intersections replaced (5th and Park Row). There will also be curb replaced on the entire two blocks of 4th Street between Linn and Taylor, as well as curb repairs along 5th Street (between 63 and Taylor) and Park Row. The same blocks will also be resurfaced with new asphalt.

Hearing no other discussion the Drinovsky adjourned the meeting.

The next regular city council meeting is Monday, Aug. 3 at 7:00 p.m.



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