07/05/2022 A Voice From the Gallery

Instead of giving Mayor Haeder and FOPAT the keys to the City, it would have been better for us to have changed the locks

inspired by the words of Doug Larson, American Columnist

          The  July 5, 2022, meeting was called to order by Mayor Dan Haeder with a recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance by Councilwoman Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples, Councilman Lukas Driesen, and Alcester City Attorney Sam Nelson.

          Agenda item #3(01:10.67)  Approve the agenda.

          Agenda item #4(01:44.37)  Approve minutes of the June 6, 2022, meeting.

          Agenda Item #5(02:18.13)  Ward II Council Vacancies – The Council was introduced to Mr. Kyle VanderHull resident of Ward II who appeared to be considered for one of the Ward II vacancies.  Mr. VanderHull having achieved his voting resident status within the city of Alcester, having been interviewed in Executive Session in by the Council and of course our pseudo-council member FOPAT was appointed and installed as a Alcester City Councilman until the next election.  (02:18.13)  

          Agenda item #6(06:33.70)  Public Input

                    Vickie Larsen(06:42.07)   *  Mayor Haeder’s contact number, not answering.  H-m-m   Mayor says (06:56.07) he has a Robocall Stop.  Gotta wonder is it one of them thar “white lists”  “Whitelist” is a tool or an app. that will allow calls only from numbers in your contact list.  Y’all don’t s’pose the residents of Alcester are not in Mayor  Haeder’s contact list.

                             * (07:14.00)  Bar Bid.  Repeating myself from a previous blog and for the benefit of those who don’t listen and have comprehension issues. I DID NOT say ban the bar!  I said sell the building/property!  Well Ladies and Gents of the council,  SELL that rotting pile of wood and plumbing.  Get the city out  of owning property.  SELL the building/ property and get it ack on the tax rolls.  Common Sense move!  The building is still not completely fixed regarding the previous repair issues.  The city would be throwing good money after bad with all the force of a catapult and then compete for the same saloon market. 

                                      I would suggest to any interested party to make some sort of rent-to-purchase offer for one year.  Test the market of  bar operation with payments and property maintenance expenses over the twelve month period.  Upon the termination of the lease, rent would be either applied to the agreed upon purchase price commensurate with the upfront appraisal prior to ease or the rent would be applied. 

                                Let the City Council Know! The City needs to END OWNERSHIP of the Bar properties.  Issue TABLED               

          Kama Johnson – (10:07.30) Ms. Johnson offered up her opinion of surplusing and selling the building and property the city owns on Main Street known as Alcester Bar.  Man you got FOPAT to do that for you?  WOW  However what you failed to recognise ma’am, is the fact city owned property doesnot generate property taxes which pays for streets, infrastructure, school programs and so forth. (13:23.40)

It is to be noted Ms. Johnson not only was/is a bartender in the facility now leased by Deem Enterprises but she also sat on the city council while working for the Alcester Bar under the lease of  the Deems and took part in Jump on the back and whack-a-Murphy on the premises of the Alcester Bar.  Mrs. Theresa Deem has already notified  the city in writing and public declaration at a city council meeting she is vacating the lease as of August 2022.

               In response to your comments on your definition or your belief in the lack of competition between the Albatross and Alcester Bar (15:02.93), ma’am explain your stance on how a Package Off Sale Liquor License awarded to Alcester Groceries (Total Stop) would have been or would be direct competition to the Alcester Bar.  Everyone you said would be heart-broken at the loss of a downtown bar (formerly a grocery store until sometime around 1988) because they love the feel of their butts on a barstool would not be affected by packaged off sale so there would be no competition.  And as ol’ Mayor Haeder opines, (1:12:25.57) “…there is ah certain statement that says competition is actually good for business… now, heh, I’m sure that people that are competing would not necessarily agree with that 100% but certainly sharpens people up…and the competiting ah competing businesses are operating a little more lean …undecipherable…so there is something to that…”  So Mayor Haeder did you get those pearls of wisdom in Engineering 101 or did you find them in the same cracker jack box your certification came in.

          Terry Hedden- (16:04.57) Mr. Hedden offered up his anti bar sale stance commenting on his patronage and patronage of his father-in-law (?)  Originally the bar was located in the general spot where the drive-up window of the bank is located.   When the bank expanded, the drug store and Lefty’s Bar were relocated.  The bar went to the empty grocery store located on the south corner of Second and  Iowa in the late 1980’s.  So while it does have some memories they are short lived in the scheme of history.

          Councilwoman Darla Reppe – (14:32.53) Commented on a dangerous drain at the pool and the status of the Fair location.

          Councilman Kyle VandenHull – (19:28.67) Commented on the presence of a sink-hole in the NW corner of  Second Street and Iowa Street.

Agenda Item #7 – Legal Updates (20:49.13)  City Attorney Sam Nelson gave updates on the demolition of 505 Ofstad, quit claim deed and costs. 

          307 Iowa Nuisance letter went out

          Discretionary Tax Formula action creation of an Ordinance 2022-03.  Council moved to adopt this Ordinance.

          Fairground negotiations.    Mr. Nelson has spoke with States Attorney Miller and his commission.  In addition Mr. Fred Preator (Appraisal Solutions Inc?) was consulted.  Costs to be split with the county but not to exceed $7000.00 and all discussions will be confidential until discussions with FCS have been completed.

Agenda Item #8  – (0:31:00.67) Fair Ground negotiations Update – NONE

Agenda Item #9(0:31:18.17)  Police Dept. Updates

          Executive Session for SDCL 1-25-2.1 Personnel

                   IN                         6:35 p.m.

                   OUT                     7:03 p.m.          

Increase in pay for Officer Grayson Lass per employment agreement between Grayson Lass and the city of Alcester upon employment and prior to certification.  The Executive Session only included Chief Schuller and Officer Lass.  Finance Officers were not included and were delegated to the hallway with the rest of the gallery.

Motion to Increase Officer Lass’ pay to $18.28 effective June 4, 2022, per employment agreement.

Agenda Item #10 – Wastewater Facility Plant Upgrade (0:38:10.77)

          Banner representative Tanya Miller was present to give an update on the bid put out for award.  Per the presentation by Ms. Miller there was nasty surprises.  The original Engineering opinion on the cost of the project was projected with a price tag of $3,100,000.00.  The One and Only bid received was $4,917,384.00.  According to Banner Representative Miller the city has three options:

         Door #1)  Award the bid and fund the additional project cost with: a)  Wasterwater Department Reserves/City Reserves (what reserves). The State also suggest local ARPA funds may be a source of funding to reduce the shortfall. b)  Request project funding to cover the additional cost in an October 1, 2022, SRF loan application.  Project funding to be determined in January. 

       Door #2)  Do not award the project.  Instead, rebid the project at a later date.  DANR typically likes to see projects rebid within a year.

     Door #3)  Do not award the project.  Shelf the plans and rebid the project   sometime in the next few years.

OR

     Door #4)  The Finance Officer initiates another property tax $100.00 per    household per month for a bulk purchase of outdoor toilets which will be emptied weekly by a port-a-pot tosser much like the Fischer’s side arm truck and we all pray there are no accidents but that is going to DEPEND on the        condition of our streets.  Yes I am being facetious.  So now we have no streets which have been waiting on the infrastructure of the sewer and wastewater which apparently is not going to happen.  I wonder can we sell/trade the Albatross for indoor bathrooms? 

Councilwoman Talbott asks about (0:57:47.03) the sewer moneys going into a Fund.  Better put a hold on those funds so they cannot be ‘borrowed’ as our other funds have been borrowed.

Got have a decision by July 27, 2022

Agenda Item #11(0:58:59.07)  Alcester Bar – Notice to Bidders. Vickie Larsen (0:59:30.50) clarifies selling the bar property does not demolish the bar just replaces the city as owner of the property.  Get the city out of the rental business.

FOLKS LET THE CITY COUNCIL KNOW YOU ARE TIRED OF THROWING GOOD MONEY AFTER BAD.   MS. JOHNSON WANTS THE BAR, LET HER BUY IT!

Agenda Item #12 – (1:04:26.70)  Package Off-Sale Liquor License  Notice of  Hearing.

Liquor Licenses – Two entities expressed interest through applications in obtaining the Off-Sale Liquor Licenses.  JKVB, LLC doing business as Alcester Quickstop and Alcester Groceries doing business as Total Stop Food Store.  

Public hearing scheduled for August 1, 2022, at 7:00 p.m.

(1:05:45.43)  The city cannot give preferential licensure to their lessee.  Two entities have already applied and if the city has two licenses both the Quickstop and the Total Stop must be awarded the license because they complied with the rules.  Mayor Haeder opines about competition (1:12:33.37)

Agenda Item #13 –  Street Hire Cash Hemingson (1:23:29.70)

Agenda Item #14 – Street Mitchell Drive (1:25:42.87)  Mayor Haeder’s pet project to fix Mitchell Drive ahead of all the folks who have been patiently waiting and paying the street maintenance tax.  Way to go Mayor Haeder.  Got to commend you on your priorities.

Agenda Item #15 – Golf Course and Community Center  (1:38:49.47)  Hiring more for the Albatross. 

          Hire Tyler Johnson       $10.00 per hour  Cook

          Hire  Stormi Carlson     $ 7.00  per hour  Server

          Hire Conor Lusk            $12.00 per hour  Cook  (1:47:56.97)  Why the devil is FOPAT Jurrens yapping away?  She is not a councilmember!  How dare she speak.  How dare Mayor Haeder not shut her down.  Why does she think she has a say in anything but measure laps for napkins?  Pat says, “…the only comment that I…I understand…appreciate how difficult to find people for certain positions, uhm, but you have to look at, at your other employees up there and they’re also doing a good job for you and if you are wanting to give a pay raise to one employee, are you going to (unintelligible) to another employee and asks for (unintelligible) and just caution giving these onsy, twosy pay raises…especially to a temporary employee and this is nothing bad against Conor ’cause I’ve enjoyed him and he’s a wonderful employee but he’s a temporary employee and so you’re giving a benefit to (unintelligible)…”  Why is she speaking, why is she still speaking? 

          Hire Wanda Halverson    $7.00 per Server  (1/2 time Community Center, 1/2                                                                           finance office?)

Agenda Item #16  –  Josh Carlson surplus roofing.  Tabled no action

Agenda Item #17  –  Burn Permit for the American Legion (1:58:17.30)

Agenda Item #18 – Covid Policy Update (1:59:25.90)

Agenda Item #19  – Finance Office (2:06:31.17)   Waste-water warrants $188.068.50.  June Warrants.  July meeting change from July 18, 2022, to July 19,2022.

Agenda Item #20 – HRC  Special Meeting (2:17:09.07)

Agenda Item #21  Union County Fair  (2:21:51.27)  No report -Just discussion

Agenda Item #22 – Executive Session SDCL 1-25-2.1 Personnel    

Not Needed, elected to have discussion in open meeting.  (2:26:34.33)  FOPAT supposed to POS Point of Sale program update/upgrade  Need this for sales operations at the Community Center.  FOPAT not getting the job done and not getting the upgrade to the community center. (2:26:53.70)

Agenda Item #23  Adjourn (2:33:30.87)  Meeting Adjourned at 9:00 P.M.

Contact City Council

Mayor Dan Haeder                             605-934-2287     

Councilwoman Darla Reppe              605-934-2602

Councilwoman Linda Talbot             605-254-3074

Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples         605-934-2096

Councilman Lukas Driesen              605-934-

Councilman Kyle VandenHull          605-934-

Patricia Jurrens                                  605-934-2517