06/03/2019 A Voice From the Gallery

At 6:00 p.m. Mayor Tom Glas called the regular Alcester City Council meeting to order with Councilman David Larsen, Councilman Dan Haeder, Councilwoman Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman Melissa Kay, Councilman Lance Johnson and Alcester City Attorney Sam Nelson present.  The group began business with approval of the night’s meeting agenda and the approval of the May meetings.

Agenda Item #5 Marc Macy was called upon to make his presentation for the National Flood Insurance Program.

Agenda Item #6 was called for the first reading of Alcester City Ordinance 2019-02 dealing with conditional uses which would allow placing just a garage on a lot for storage (?).  This was a garage ordinance originally called 2019-01, after my argument there was already a 2019-01 ordinance which I call ‘protect Pat’s Job attempt’, an argument from Pat I was wrong on the numbering and AFTER I proved I was correct,  the amending ordinance was changed to 2019-02.  Ya know all FO Pat had to do was to pull her file on ordinances (which she is required to keep) she could have prevented the confusion of two (2) 2019-01 ordinances, the delay of first reading and of course knowingly calling me wrong.

Agenda Item #7-a presentation made by Amanda Ericson and Carmen Kast for the Fireman Water Fight scheduled for June 15, 2019, during the hours of 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and to ask permission to close off Second Street from Iowa to Dakota.  Permission was granted.

Agenda Item #8– I commented on three items, which were included in my hand-outs to the council.

First was the Ordinance numbering which was dealt with the Agenda item  6.

Second was the failure of the Mayor and FO Pat Jurrens to provide FOIA for access to completed public records absentee ballot application and listing poll book.  FO Pat argued I was wrong and could not access these documents.  I had already provided information from the Secretary of State to back up my claim.  I was refused access and was given a listing of the absentee ballot names and was informed that Alcester City Attorney Sam Nelson had spoken with the South Dakota Secretary of State representative Christine Lehrkamp.

Since I had spoken to a different person in the SD Secretary of State office, I contacted Ms. Lehrkamp, explained the situation and she agreed I should have     access.  I made plans to bring this to the council’s attention during input.  On Monday, June 3, 2019, I contacted Ms. Lehrkamp asking for a written statement I could present to bolster my argument and she provided me with the statement.  Upon my introduction of the FOIA issue, FO Pat objected, I argued the statement in my handout and Alcester City Attorney Sam Nelson stated he read the Ms. Lehrkamp’s statement, I was correct and I was to be given access to the FOIA information.

Third was the issue of no visible pool rules. I spoke of the absence of the large pool rules sign, the fact children were going down the slide head-first and a garden hose strung across the pool deck and wound around the slide ladder which creates a clear danger to pool users.  After speaking with city representatives of Beresford and Canton     I was told there should be a life-guard stationed at the ladder of the slide and a life-guard in the pool at the foot of the slide.

One again FO Pat waded in with an argument noting the size of the slide, to which I responded we got the slide from Beresford who had the two life-guard slide rule.

I went to the pool this morning, saw the copy paper sized, laminated farce of a sign attached to the slide and not a large visible sign that parents, children and life-guards can clearly see without walking to within two feet of the slide.

Agenda Item #10– The council spoke to the Mayor’s and FO Pat’s decision to sic a South Dakota Circuit Judge on non-conforming residents.  Oh and yeah,  Mayor Glas asked for what I will call a not-so-secretary security de-tale of one volunteer to walk around town with him to inspect properties.  Councilman Lance Johnson leaped at the change.  Amazing, this is the guy who lives across from 518 Anderson where the curb and gutter vandalism took place and has not been resolved.

Agenda Item#11 Alcester Ambulance came to request the city forgive the water charges for the ambulance building.  The Council voted to not charge the ambulance for water usage.

Item Agenda #16– Finance Office  A couple of notable departures from code and duties.

First was Mayor Glas major faux pas.  This ‘sage of cee-ment and construction” was advised the roof on one of the park shelters needed repair.  Well ol’ sage tom went to Schoeneman to price steel.  Oh not the sine-wave of course.  Well he got pricing on a single sheet unit of steel but not the screws, nails, wood and etc. to cover the roof A-N-D then he did the math times six (6) to cover the whole roof?  Are ya kidding?  Who does that? MAYOR TOM GLAS, that is who!  But it gets better, he is given a verbal opinion of cost, Mayor Glas FAILED to GET-IT-IN-WRITING!  Who does that?  Mayor Tom Glas, that is who!

Next is the Executive Session for personnel, now everyone aside from the council, Alcester City Attorney Sam Nelson and FO Pat Jurrens were ushered out.  So there we were Gordon Richards and myself standing in the atrium of the Auditorium with Wanda Halverson guarding the council door against Vandals, Huns and who know what interlopers.  Folks the council is abusing Executive session.

Now I figured the council was dealing with the recent demand for payment from a former employee, but the reason to go into executive session was personnel which was inappropriate for a lawsuit question.  Occasionally we would hear a word or two erupt into the silence in the atrium, such as “I make a motion!”  Really! Making a motion in executive session, A BIG NO-NO!  Yes folks that did get my attention!  What was it about, wait for it, wait for it.

The Council was declared out of Executive Session at 9:00* and slam, bam, you’re gonna get the dough FO Pat.  Immediately a motion was made to PAY FO PAT JURRENS $4800.00 settlement for her “illegal comp time”  Alcester Voters $4800.00 for comp time (time and a half) for exempt administrative hours, HOURS THAT WERE NOT APPROVED AS TO NECESSITY, ADVANCE WRITTEN APPROVAL, HOURS NOT PROPERLY ACCOUNTED FOR,  AND ETC.

The city offices are closed on Tuesday noon to five with the door closed and the telephone not answered ’cause the ‘girls’ cannot get their work done!  Yeah well yesterday was a Tuesday, what part of weed pulling, flower bed tending is in FO PATS job description?  Who pays $25.00/hour for a finance officer to pull weeds and make pretty-pretty?  What idiot pays FO Pat time-and-a-half for pulling weeds, painting walls, shopping -for-atrium-decor?  Judging from the payroll checks signed by Mayor Tom Glas he is the idiot!  Mayor Glas whose ‘Oversight’ is the “I forgot and made a mistake Oversight” NOT the “I am watching you Oversight” WHO in Hades is “OVERSEEING” Mayor Glas and the Finance Office.

I would recommend that decision be referred and not be paid out.  So I would advise FO Pat not to spend that $4800!  With that gem of governance, the council adjourned at 9:01 p.m.

*Mayor Glas in his rush to get FO Pat her unapproved comp time/over-time, barely allowed those of us waiting in the no-open-meeting-for-us atrium-land to be seated in the council room, much less get the camera rolling to record his shining hour.