08/16/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

“Ethical behavior is doing the right thing when no one else is watching–even when doing the wrong thing is legal.”

(Aldo Leopold)

Mayor Haeder called the August 16, 2021,  Alcester City Council meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. with the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.  Council members present were Councilman David Larsen, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman  Cyndi Peeples, Councilman Brian Johnson, Councilman Curtis Keiser (via telephonic participation), Alcester City Attorney Sam Nelson with Councilwoman Darla Reppe running late.

Approval of the agenda was called (01:36:.00) and so begins what felt like a quadrimular city council meeting.  There should have been a scoreboard to determine which goal post the mayor and his minions were heading for.  The agenda had some problems, City Attorney Sam wanted the discussion of the nuisance property located at 307 Iowa street to happen in executive session (01:48.37).  Now this property has been on the agenda for the past year in various stages of discussion and mediation.  Now it needs an executive session for legal counsel?  So agenda item 7(a) needs executive session.  Okay.  Motion is made to approve the agenda by adding an executive session to deal with agenda item 7(a).  Motion is made, seconded and further discussion is called.  Yup and so it begins.  City Attorney Sam says, “well we could move that executive session on to agenda item #12 (a) (the perennial just-in-case executive session usually held for personnel)  Mayor thinks that is a great idea.  So now do we amend the amendment, start over or do we consult a parliamentarian ’cause we do not have one of those on the payroll.  Mayor called for vote (02:35.47)  Now is the time for the Parliamentary purge (03:40.47)

Now that other shortfalls of the agenda items list (specifically all those pesky ordinance language) have been effectively obscured, the vote is taken. (04:58.70) Yay!

Agenda Item #4 is called and Mayor Haeder is already cringing. 

I had input, I asked where is my FOIA/Sunshine request from several months ago?  The context of this request for information relates to those properties located in residential areas but are nothing more than storage garages.  Are they using water and are they paying for the water?  Some are, some are not and it appears it is at the ‘discretion’ of the FO and wonder-of-wonders she has property contained within that request.  She has determined this is Top-Secret-Personal information, just as she did with the over-hanging tree citations and refused to comply.  We’ll see.

I had a second subject of input which dealt with 2021-11 the Golf Cart ordinance.(08:58.50)  This ordinance is a joke in that it accomplished absolutely nothing. No penalties and no procedurals for our law enforcement and citation purposes.  Language wording makes the assumption that an adult is the operator of the golf cart.   Please note the language of Ordinance 7.0902 being repealed:  Golf Cart* Operation.  golf carts shall not be allowed to operate within the City excepted as authorized by state statute or by this Chapter.  Golf carts properly permitted pursuant to this Chapter shall be allowed to travel on the roadway portion of public streets, alleys, and other roadways within the City except those highways where golf carts are prohibited by state statute.  An operator of a golf cart shall comply with all City and state traffic rules and regulations applying to vehicles generally, and except that a golf cart shall not be required to have a bell, horn, or directional signals.   

Now compare the language of the New ordinance:  7.0902  Golf Cart* Operation.  Golf carts shall not be allowed to operate within the City except as authorized by state statute or by this Chapter.  Golf Carts properly permitted pursuant to this Chapter shall be allowed to travel on the roadway portion of public streets, alleys and other roadways within the City except those highways where golf carts are prohibited by state statute.  An operator of a golf cart shall comply with all City and state traffic rules and regulations applying to vehicles. (10:34.23) (11:43.23)

*SDLRC  32-14-13 –  Golf cart defined.  For the purposes of §§32-14-14 to 32-14-16 inclusive, the term, golf cart means a four wheeled vehicle originally and specifically designed and intended to transport one or more individuals and golf clubs for the purpose of playing the game of golf on a golf course.  (11:53.37)

*SDCL §58-23-9 – Motor vehicle defined.  For the purposes of § 58-23-8, the term, motor vehicle, means automobiles, motor trucks, motorcycles, and all vehicles propelled by power other than muscular power and designed primarily for travel on the public highway except traction engines, road rollers, farm wagons, freight trailers, house trailers, trailers, vehicles that run only on rails or tracks, and off-road vehicles as defined in § 32-3-1. However, a vehicle not designed for travel on the public highway that is licensed is a motor vehicle for purposes of § 58-23-8. Freight trailers, house trailers, and trailers which are attached to a motor vehicle are part of that motor vehicle. ( Casetext – current with changes from 2021 Legislative Session) (11:53.37)

COUNCILWOMAN TALBOTT  (12:22.57) Councilwoman Talbott stated she had received questions  why there has been no publication for the position of police officer after Chief Schuller was hired as Alcester Police Chief.  (12:32.50)

FO Jurrens response (12:32.50)    

Councilwoman Talbotts response “Two weeks”  (12:43.80) 

Chief Schuller stated he had requested AD COPY from FO Jurrens and got no response. (13:05.90) 

Chief Schuller stated he had written his own AD COPY for the position of police officer, submitted it for approval to Mayor Haeder.  Mayor Haeder approved Chief Schullers proposed AD COPY, so Chief Schuller submitted the AD COPY to FO Jurrens three times and still no response.  Councilwoman Talbott asked the question, “… so will that be getting done soon…?” (13:50.17) 

FO Jurrens whined “…Like I said, it was my intention to do it today…I’m sorry, but nothing about my day was normal today…I’m just one person…” (13:56.17) 

Councilwoman Talbot said, “You know…and I get that but I also get he’s (Chief Schuller) is one person…” (14:06.13) 

Councilwoman Talbott states further, “That is why we need to get something done before he does what our prior chief had to do…” (14:20.03) 

Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples  speaks to the Bar door which has not arrived yet.

Wanda Halverson speaks to the Chamber of Commerce Football book fund raiser.

Councilwoman Darla Reppe spoke of the opportunity to obtain a very early edition of an abstract of Alcester.

 Agenda Item #5 – Wastewater Facility – Presentation of Ms. Leslie Mastrioanni Planner II SECOG (Southeastern Council of Government) regarding funding of the new Wastewater Facility.  Resolution 2021-14 dealt with a vote to move forward on a possible addition of CDBG funding of this project.  No action was taken at this time.

At this point Councilman Keiser’s phone went off-line for the balance of the meeting. 6:40 PM

Agenda Item #6 – Medical Cannabis licensing 2021-16 and zoning 2021-17  Setting up public meetings of the city council and the zoning and planning committee.  The Planning and Zoning committee at this point in time is made up of the entire membership of the Alcester City Council which is problematic in many ways.  The public would be better served if our Planning and Zoning were made of three council members and three regular citizens who own property in Alcester.

2021-16 Licensing of Medical Cannabis was first up, however after the motion and a second to the motion it was determined there was a public hearing time frame issue. Mayor Haeder determined since there was a motion and a second on the floor it would be proper to vote on the issue and with a consensus to vote against the issue and re-do the motion involving both 2021-16 and 2021-17.  So a vote was taken and with a vote of five (5) nays the issue failed.  Again no parliamentarian on site.   

The issue was re-introduced to make room for the time parameters for publication.  Too bad this was not addressed while the agenda was concocted.  Sloppy work.  So the public hearing was set for September 7, 2021, P&Z hearing and recommendation at 6:15 PM with the public hearing of the Alcester City Council meeting to commence at 7:00 to consider the recommendation of the Planning and Zoning committee which is de facto the City Council.  “Hey Abbot   Who is on First? ” 

Agenda Item #7 – Ordinance Galore.

2021-11  –  Golf Carts –  Approved First reading.

2021-12  –  Parking  – Approve Second reading.

2021-13  –  Penalty of Offenses – Approve Second reading.

2021-14  –  Resolution Funding Wastewater Treatment Facility – No Action Taken

2021-15  –  Variance simplification to aid in quid pro quo (my definition) First read

2021-16  –  Licensing Medical Cannabis  public hearing

2021-17  –  Zoning Medical Cannabis public hearing

                – Ordinance update Title 3  Garbage – not ready for discussion

2021-18  –  Resolution amending policy 7.2 Vacation time 

Agenda Item #8 – Committee Updates

Streets – Okay

Pool – Possible Liner Leak

Cemetery – Again no weeding done

Water/wastewater- rusting pipes connect water source to our water tower.  Hard estimate to fix $60K

Police – Need for Officer –  Mayor opines about Sheriff’s Department (1:31:10.50)

Library – Board member resignation

Golf Course – none

Finance Officer – Budget not ready but it is her hope she will have it sometime later September.  Usually due by September 1.  So why the delay in the budget? (1:37:48.97)

Agenda Item #9 – Finance Office

Updates  Question asked about Direct Deposit of Payroll.  (1:38:50.90)

FO Jurrens offers comment, “Not all city employees bank in Alcester” (1:40:20.03)  FOJurrens opines employees must bank in Alcester, not true.  It is all in the routing numbers!

Agenda Item #10 – Community Center – Sheetrock coming.

Agenda Item #11 – Fair Board Councilwoman Darla Reppe.

Agenda Item #12 – Executive Session

1-25-2.3  Legal Counsel  7:51 PM – 8:06 PM Council, Attorney Sam and FOPat

1-25-2.1  Personnel  8:07 PM -8:50 PM Council with Attorney Sam w/o FOPat A great deal of laughing and pacing in this session. H-m-m-m

Agenda Item #13 – Adjourn  8:51 PM

Contact City Council

Mayor Dan Haeder                             605-934-2287      605-770-7929

Councilman David Larsen                  605-934-2434

Councilwoman Darla Reppe               605-934-2602

Councilwoman Linda Talbot              605-254-3074

Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples  

Councilman Brian Johnson               605-214-0282

Councilman Curtis Keiser                  605-214-7604

Patricia Jurrens                                  605-934-2517