06/19/2020 A Voice From the Gallery

Mayor Dan Haeder called the June 19, 2020, Special meeting to order at 1:00 p.m. with the follow council present:  Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman Melissa Kay, Councilman David Larsen, Councilman Marcus Ireland and City Attorney Sam Nelson present.  Present in the gallery: Mark DeRaney-AMKO, Jerry Spethman-Representing D.A. Davidson, Gordan Richard-Alcester Union-Hudsonite, Alcester Police Chief Christie, Alcester Police Officer Schuller,  Branch Manager-Senior Vice-President Alcester Premier Bank Jaimey Schempp and finance office employee Wanda *.

The group stood for the Pledge of Allegiance.

Agenda Item #4 – Mssrs. Mark DeRaney of AMKO and Jerry Spethman of  D.A. Davidson were introduced and made an update regarding the re-funding (semantics of the word re-funding meaning reworking the original bond to reflect a reduction in finance of the Sewer Bond for the city of Alcester. The council approved this action.

Agenda Item #5– Public Input.  I responded with a history of the official city website issue.  The original approval and vote took place March 3, 2014, approving $1375. 00 first year set-up and fee with an annual maintenance fee of $450.00. 

May 5, 2014, Patricia ran on a recycling agenda touting her computer prowess and was seated.  Looking back one has to wonder exactly what was she in favor of recycling? 

Oh well, pushing forward, on July 7, 2014, Councilwoman Jurrens resigned her council seat after voting not to appoint long time Finance Officer Mike Kezar.

September 10, 2014, Madam Jurrens was appointed Finance Office at a starting pay of $40,000.00 with a bump in pay after she achieved some ‘experience’ in bookkeeping.  It is interesting to note here Madam Jurrens with no bookkeeping experience was started $40000.00 far more than the 30 plus year veteran Finance Officer.  Exit Mayor Rick Johnson 2015.  Enter Mayor Tom Glas. 

April 4, 2016, Website approved and ordered by the council was still not implemented.  Who’s task, well let’s see.  Oh that is right Finance Officer Jurrens  with all the computer ‘experience’ she had still did not have the council ordered website up and running.

August 10, 2016, I asked during Public Input where is our website? No answer, no action!  2017 arrives still no website. 

July 10, 2018, agenda item # 12 (g) website was discussed in terms of  merging with the Alcester Chamber site which would negate any state statutes set into place to mandate minutes, records, ordinances and etc. be posted on the official city website.  Nothing was implemented, again.  Finance Officer Jurrens failing to perform her duty and obeying city council instructions for a city website. 

May 6, 2019, agenda item #13 (c) which was to approve Gov/Office 3 year website contract ($700.00 per year for three years)  Motion was made by Councilwoman Melissa Kay, Second by Councilman Dan Haeder with a 6 vote unanimous approval of the website…The six council present:  David Larsen, Melissa Kay, Dan Haeder, Linda Talbott, Lance Johnson and Darla Reppe. 

May 2019 Folks?  The only council member who is questioning Alcester Finance Officer Jurren’s continuing non-feasance to do what the council ordered… is Councilwoman Kay. 

It is now April 6, 2020, Website issue once again makes it to the meeting during the discussion of should the city finance office stay open or close.  This seems to be a operation definition of Oxymoron.  Of late and specifically on Tuesdays, the finance office lights are on, there is movement in the office with the excuse (?) the girls are catching up on their work?  So the lights are on, the girls are present but the door is locked (mostly) and the phones are silent.  So is the Finance Office Open/closed or Closed/open.  Think catch-22 here. or the military SNAFU. 

May 5, 2020,  agenda item #18 once again where is the website discussion just after the audit notice. 

Enter June 19, 2020, public input  Where is the official city website?  Answer it is going to go live soon.  Really live?  Hey FO Jurrens you mean a real, functioning OFFICIAL Alcester City Website.  As a child I learned quickly what a dodge was and I do not mean the car model.  Alcester City Council you are being conned.  The former mayor was led around by Finance Officer Jurrens like the pony in a pony ride at a kid’s birthday party.  I also brought up employees operating expensive city equipment with their heads in their cell phones.

Agenda item #6/#9-Planning and Zoning Amendment. It seems that pesky planning and zoning thingy can be a bit of a problem in the residential sense, right Mr. Nelson?  It seems if I caught everything that was tossed about, the residential class would not allow the city offices to operate out of the old city-school library.  You see I asked a similar question in a previous meeting with the idea we would not be barred from keeping the city offices in the old city-school library permanently.  Evidently Mr. Nelson went home and thought about my question and decided maybe Chapter 5 in the Planning and Zoning Ordinance should be amended to read that the city offices could indeed be operated out of the old city-school library.  Imagine that, the city could not operate the finance office out of the old city-school library cause it was zoned residential but a former councilman could engage in what appears to be a contract variance with Alcester Finance Officer Jurrens to build Old Mac Lance’s Barn in a residential area effectively devalued the residential properties on either side of the Old Mac Lance’s Combine Barn.  The amendment was approved by the council but a public hearing had to be set to complete the action.  Public Hearing was set for July 6, 2020, at 7:30 p.m.

Agenda Item #7 – Pool Updates The pool has been opened to pre-school and up.  A note here:  After passing the pool when it was occupied by staff and swimmers, I strongly suggest the city provide the swim attire for the city hired life-guards.  I strongly suggest the swim costumes be of the same color, one-piece only and marked appropriately as life-guard so there can be no doubt just who is the life-guard for the pool and who is in charge.

Agenda Item #12 July meeting location.  Meeting has been moved to the old city-school library Dakota Street.

Agenda Item #13-Executive Session-  Not needed.  It is amazing how much time not having an unnecessary executive meeting shaves of the length of meetings.  Even more time can be shaved by giving the council all the background information they need on agenda items so they can prepare and not have to rely on a translation from a biased source.

Agenda Item #14 Adjourn  Meeting adjourned at 1:38 p.m.

*Notice finance office employee Wanda was listed among the gallery. WHY? I heard the office telephone ring and ring while she sat in the gallery. So who is minding the finance store? Is that another oxymoron case which begged the question, was the officer open/closed or closed/open? She did eventually get up and answer the phone. Well at least I think so, it stopped ringing.