February 10, 2020


PLACE: Nezperce City Hall, 606 Maple Street.


PRESENT were Councilmembers Steve Bateman, Mike Jensen, James Zenner, Michelle Lyons, Maintenance Supervisor Craig Cardwell, Fire Chief Dave Kuther and Clerk-Treasurer Rhonda Schmidt. Guests present were Engineer Amy Uptmor, Auditor Steve Clack and resident/business owner Dan Johnson. Councilman Tyler Nelson absent.

Pledge of Allegiance: The pledge was led by Mayor Bateman.

MINUTES of the previous meetings of 1/13/20 were approved as emailed upon a motion by Cm. Zenner, motion was seconded by Cm. Lyons, motion carried.

The Clerk’s Monthly Treasurer’s Report dated February 10, 2020 was examined and approved, showing the following:

                             Funds on Hand                   $384,016.75

All bills and payroll disbursements were examined and approved for payment upon a motion by Cm. Zenner and seconded by Cm. Jensen in the total of $88,896.80 check numbers 15191 through 15241 with check number 15209 being voided. Receipts since the last meeting were shown as $132,658.62. Checks and stub approvals were signed appropriately by all parties as well as the Payment Approval Report for February.

Dan Johnson asked about Catering Licenses as how many days are they good for and can consecutive licensees be issued? Clerk Schmidt printed the state statute that covers catering permits and the questions were answered.

Dan Johnson followed up with asking who the Jurisdictional Alliance contact is for the city because he will be scheduling a meeting in the near future. They haven’t had a meeting in 8 or so years. Mayor Bateman said that he will be the city contact.


1.  FYE 2019 Audit: Auditor Steve Clack presented the FYE 2019 audit to the council and went over a few things that the council should be aware of, adding that most funds improved position and made suggestions for cleaning up some old debt.

2.  Feasibility Sewer Study: Engineer Amy Uptmor provided the council with a detailed handout giving the council a rundown of what has happened recently and where we are today after appealing the NPDES permit with the EPA with the representation of the Chicago attorney. The EPA has issued a draft permit to include a compliance order for ammonia giving us until December 2028. Public comment is due by March 9 on the latest draft permit. From there the issue of going to land application has become the primary option to getting out of the creek. She suggested that we deal with I & I issues when they are presented but that will not be the main focus going to land application. With the focus being land application additional storage is the biggest issue as well as needing between 80 to 100 acres to irrigate, she suggested a long-term lease for the acreage. We will need to purchase property for the construction of two new storage cells. The approximate cost for a land application project falls somewhere between 8 to 9 million and regulation will go the state DEQ. Land purchase costs have not been included in the land app cost estimate. If the council opted to go with a mechanical plant, we would have to deal with phosphorus and ammonia limits and the proposed cost is between 11 and 12 million with the EPA regulating the process. Uptmor added the funding option we have include ICDBG Block grant, Rural Development, Corps funding, interim financing. The council discussed moving toward land application and sewer rates. Uptmor added that Rural Development does not like to see residential rates over $63.00.

3.  Sewer Property Acquisition: Mayor Bateman and engineer Amy Uptmor met with school officials as the school is in the process of purchasing 8 acres of hay ground north of the school between the school and city lagoons. The school is planning to use the property for the ag department planting crop plots, trees, a community garden with a barn to house 4-H animals. The city is interested in acquiring approximately 1 acre next to the lagoons. Mayor Bateman will work to find if the area has been surveyed.

4.  ITD Project 2020: ITD reps met with Mayor Bateman, Public Works Supervisor Cardwell and Clerk Schmidt to discuss needs of the city along Highway I62 through town as they are gearing up to seal coat the highway. They are planning to finish the work north of Nezperce on Highway 62 that they started a year and a half ago and continue through town. Cardwell and Bateman informed them of a couple issues that we have been dealing with since the revitalization of Oak Street in 2009. Primarily the problems are the road falling apart between 6th and 8th Avenues, leveling the asphalt in the area of the historical signage plus a stormwater issue at 5th Avenue.

            1. Maintenance

Water: Well 4 is down due to a valve issue. The tank overflowed due to a pump being stuck on. Cardwell called KME to repair and now has the parts to fix it. If we had a working radio system, we would have been able to catch the problem instead of running over the tank. Testing of nitrate on Well 4 came back and DEQ is requiring that it is monitored quarterly; all other samples came back great.

Sewer: Ponds have come up 3 inches this last week. Testing is going well since moving the composite sampler and the ponds haven’t froze over this year.

Airport: Cardwell reported that he has begun work on a new windsock. He had planned to attach it to the building the city is trading to Kuther but has decided to install it next to the building instead using the power from the building.

Streets: Maintenance spent several different days plowing and will be cleaning the drainage ditches next to Bell Equipment and CenturyLink on 3rd Avenue. The solar radar signs will be installed and described to the council where those signs will go on city streets. If we wanted them along the highway, we would have to fill out ITD permits. Cardwell will be ordering concrete for the windsock and the solar signs at the same time. He asked the council if they had any other needs for concrete.

Animal Control: Dealing with lots of racoon calls and trapping them.

EMS: Doug Grant built the cover for the heat pumps at the EMS building as part of community service and did a great job.

           2.  Clerk
Arbor Day was scheduled for April 30th with a project at the EMS building. Will work with Cardwell to create a project.

           3.  Fire Department
Chief Kuther informed the council that the Fireman’s ball is in the works for March 21st if the band is available. He added that 3 younger guys join the department recently.


Cm. Zenner asked “when is the next Airbridge internet tower going up?” There has been rumors that one is going up on Columbia Grain’s cement elevator. Clerk Schmidt replied that she will be seeing David McNight soon and will ask him.


Other/Upcoming Events:
Upcoming Council Meetings: March 9th at 5:30PM and April 13th at 5:30PM

The next city council meeting will be on Monday, March 9, 2020 at 5:30 PM at City Hall.

____________________                   _____________________________
Steve A. Bateman, Mayor                          Rhonda J. Schmidt, Clerk-Treasurer