10/03/2017 A Voice from the Gallery

Mayor Glas called the October 2, 2017, regular meeting of the Alcester City council to order at 6:00 p.m. in the Alcester City/School Library with council members Julia Sundstrom-Lyle, Audri Carlson, David Larsen, Dan Haeder, Darla Reppe and Lance Johnson present.

Line item 3 approval of Mayor Glas’ agenda, no discussion with a unanimous aye vote.

Line item 4 approval of the meeting minutes of the September 6, 2017, regular meeting of the council and the meeting minutes of the September 20, 2017, special meeting of the council.  Again, no discussion with a unanimous vote. *(remember this tally on later agenda action)  

Line item 5, the welcome by City/School Librarian Dee Cole.  Librarian Cole informed the council and gallery of the acquisition of a 3D printer, attendance and usage of the Library over the past years, and the move of the city/school Library to the proposed new school.

Line item 6 was sales pitch/information from Randy Smidt from Sanitation Products for a brand-spanking new Elgin Pelican Street Sweeper for a mere 190+K to $200K.  The bid coming from NJPA a national purchasing cooperative.  Councilman Dan Haeder commented the bid was without the extended warranty which had been projected in a previous meeting at $15K.  The projected delivery date contingent on financing after the first of the year.  NOTE:  Financing  Councilman Dan Haeder made the motion to purchase the 2018 Elgin Pelican Street Sweeper at a price of $190+K, Councilwoman Audri Carlson made the second, once again no discussion and the group voted unanimous aye.

Line item 7 was the annexation of city shop parcels.  Failure of Mayor Glas and Finance Officer Jurrens to understand this would be a voluntary annexation and all Mayor Glas had to do was sign and file a written annexation for property the city already owned.  Glas and Jurrens failed to understand or seek counsel from the Alcester city Attorney Haugland and failing to understand they did not need Union County Commissioner approval.  Motion from Councilman Lance Johnson, Second from Councilman Dan Haeder, no discussion and once again a unanimous vote aye.

Line item 8, the infamous Developers Agreement!  Mayor Glas on at least two previous occasions openly, publically verbally attacked Alcester City Attorney Chuck Haugland for not, “…Hopping-to-it…” on drawing up an agreement between the two interested parties of the Nonprofit Alcester Industrial Park and their developer.

FACT CHECK here.   Today, October 3, 2017, I spoke with Industrial Park Board agent Jaimie Schempp for clarification of identities of the parties involved.  Alcester Industrial Park Board agent Schempp acknowledged the Alcester Industrial Board was also in fact the developer.

So to the best of my knowledge, the North Industrial Park has NOT been handed over to the city of Alcester therefore the city should not be footing the legal bill for a developers agreement between Alcester Industrial Park and itself.  Mayor Glas what the devil are ya doin’?  You and your Fo-minion have treated the city attorney with open hostility and blatant disregard of his superior legal expertise to force a financial obligation onto the taxpayers of Alcester.  Do we have to draw you pictures so you can educate yourself to the workings of the city, comic-book style?  As FO-Pat has demonstrated on other warrants,



Line item 12,e, i, a & b  From the finance office.  Finance officer Pat Jurrens pulled two charges from the bill submitted by Alcester City Attorney Chuck Haugland.  Ya have to appreciate the irony in this one.  FO-Pat objects to the time spent by Alcester City Attorney Haugland in keeping up with Alcester City Council meetings by reading the rest of the story (thank you, Paul Harvey) in the Vickie Larsen blog “A Voice from the Gallery”.  Yup, Mayor Glas and Finance Officer Jurrens have failed miserably to keep Mr. Haugland, Alcester City Attorney fully apprised their collective ‘TOM FOOLERY’ otherwise known as Alcester City business by dismissing City Attorney Haugland one hour into the city council meeting and exclude him from council decisions for the rest of the meeting because he costs too much, Really!

Mayor Glas opined that Mr. Haugland could read the minutes in the local newspaper or in the minutes by Finance Officer Pat (When she finally gets around to getting the draft minutes to Mr. Haugland).  When Mr.Haugland argued he needed inclusive access to council discussions so he could determine how they might affect legal liabilities to the city of Alcester, Mr. Haugland was told by Mayor Glas and FO Pat that they would make the determination of possible legal exposure and relay it to him.  Really?  The city bookkeeper is going to give a legal opinion, or Tag-a-long Tom give a legal opinion?  He couldn’t determine a support brick wall versus a decorative brick facing.   Back in Des Moines his legal prowess didn’t work out so well for him, either.  Alcester City Attorney Haugland challenged Finance Officer Pat Jurrens by asking her, “do you read ‘A Voice from the Galley’?  FO-Pat said, “yes, she did read the blog” and then Mr. Haugland asked, “when do you read it,  on city time?”  I do believe the answer was yes.



Then there is Councilman Lance Johnson, the council’s little teapot short and mouthy who ranted and raved about my blog.  Alleging the home truths I shared were inaccurate, this little varmint who after he was initially appointed to Ward III council seat told me, “In a year I will be leaving so you can apply then…”  Then Councilman Lance Johnson in his quivering rage continued his rant at me (who was not a party to the discussion) railing, “You (meaning me) don’t even have the guts to allow comments on your blog”.  Into which morass, Mayor Glas and Finance Officer Pat Jurrens weighed in with their ill-considered opinions.  I listened in silence and as the tirades of Councilman Johnson, Mayor Glas and Finance Officer wound down, I asked for rebuttal time.  Care to guess what Mayor Glas answered, “No, you can answer in public input”  City Attorney Haugland was attacked, I was attacked and given NO opportunity to respond to the allegations publically without a time limit.

The motion was made by Councilman Dan Haeder to approve paying (10/10/2017 clarification) the August legal warrant hold back of $52.50 and the September legal warrant hold back of $63.00 with no further legal time charged for reading A Voice from the Gallery blog, Second came from Councilman David Larsen.  Once again no discussion with an unanimous aye vote.  Then Councilman David Larsen moved to approve the rest of the warrants, second came from Councilwoman Julia Sundstrom-Lyle, again no discussion with an unanimous aye vote.

Line item 12, (e) ii, a & b  Motion by Councilman Lance Johnson to approve the second reading of the water rate increase, second came from Councilwoman Darla Reppe, again no discussion with an unanimous aye vote.

Line item 12, (e) iii a  Motion to go into Executive Session for Personnel SDCL 1-25-2-1 which is:

(1)  Discussing the qualifications, competence, performance, character or fitness of any public officer or employee or prospective public officer or employee. The term “employee” does not include any independent contractor;[1]

This appears to be a habit of the council when they do not want an audience while they discuss a thorn-in-their-side rather than one specific employee.

Line item 13 Public Input was called, I responded and Mayor Glas told me I had two minutes.  I had already distributed a second request for FOIA regarding CBDG financials that have been ignored and received no response when I initially served the Mayor on August 7. 2017, and provided copies to the council that same meeting.

I also dealt with Councilman Lance Johnson’s rant telling him that the council could video the council meetings and post them on the city website, I pointed out to the council they were not required to vote unanimously every vote, they could think for themselves and vote nay and I pointed out Finance Officer Pat Jurrens was misusing the city email alcestercityfo for a Pinterest ID.  I received the same blank look and non-action from Mayor Glas, his usual condescending pat-on-the-head and go away.

Line item 19 Adjourn  Councilwoman Audri Carlson moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:35 p.m. with a second coming from Councilman Lance Johnson.  No discussion with a vote of 5 ayes; Councilwoman Julie, Councilwoman Darla, Councilwoman Audri, Councilman Dan and Councilman Lance and 1 nay, Councilman David with the pointed salute to a non-unanimous* vote.  Salute!


[1] South Dakota legislature-Legislative Research Council (www.sdlegislature.gov), 2017, State Affairs & Government-Meetings of Public Agencies, October 3, 2017.