04/04/2023 A Voice From the Gallery

The  April 3, 2023, meeting of the Alcester City Council was moved at the last minute to April 4, 2023, due to a lack of quorum.  The rescheduled meeting called to order on April 4, 2023, by Mayor pro-tem Lukas Driesen at 6:00 p.m. with Councilwoman Darla Reppe, Councilman Kyle VandenHul and Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples.  Austin Felts was the Attorney in attendance due to the absence of Sam Nelson, Alcester City Attorney.  The council and gallery recited the Pledge of Allegiance. 

(00:38.63)  AGENDA ITEM #3 – APPROVE AGENDA –  Approval of the Alcester City Council agenda with change to add an executive session to Agenda Item #11 Police Department to discuss candidate for Alcester Police Chief.  Vote X3Ayes.

(00:02:13.43)  AGENDA ITEM #4 APPROVE MARCH 6, 2023, &20, 2023, MEETING          MINUTES.  Vote X3 Ayes

(00:02:48.77)  AGENDA ITEM #5 – BID APPROVAL /AWARD BID BANNER ENGINEERING –Tanya Miller Representative of Banner appearing.  Motion was made by Councilman Vandenhul with second coming from Councilwoman Reppe to approve the bid award to Industrial Process Technologies for the amount of $5,358,000.00.  Vote X3 Ayes.



          Approval for change in date to July 29.2023, due to the change in bands.   Vote X3 Ayes

(00:34:42.80)  AGENDA ITEM #8 – PUBLIC INPUT –

          VICKIE LARSEN (00:34:48.60)  I spoke to the flow altering road over the creek on the southern border of Alcester, the annexation described as Lot D-   SE 28-95-49 was originally platted as being 408 ft X 300 ft as described in D.R. 30-635 and 36-380, but actually is 307.5 X 300 ft as occupied west of    Iowa Street and north of South.  (FCS site) The Union County Commissioners Resolution 2016-001 approval which included the amendment , “…to include all adjoining roads…”and its consequences for the tax payers of Alcester. (00:37:17.00) I spoke to the misinformation placed n the Alcester city website which announced a Notice of Quorum for conducting interviews.  In that Notice of Quorum it was stated Interviews will be conducted on:  Monday, April 3, 2027  1 pm.  I presented each of the council a copy of that notice and I pointed out the date error. (00:37:49.47)  Alcester hiring managers for City owned businesses and past lessons learned.  At some point Alcester decided to run their own bar and hired a manager to run the bar for them.  Long story short, the bar began to lose money, the city council members had to do an inventory of liquor stock in a non-air- conditioned building.  As I understand it, opened bottles of liquor were lined up on the pool table and the bottle was held up to the light to guess-ti-mate how much liquor remained in the bottle for inventory purposes.  According to the story tempers flared, the mayor quit (according to the story) and those remaining council members came to the decision, NO-MORE-MANAGERS in Municipally owned enterprises.  Lease only Bar operations.  After hearing that tale, my stance is sell the bar and lose the albatross around the city’s collective necks. At the conclusion of my remarks I walked a copy of the County Resolution to the acting city Attorney.  At this point (0:41:10.37)  FOPAT pushes back on my criticism of error on the city website which lies within her duty to maintain accurate and complete information and resulting confrontation.  I had copied the document I referenced from the website and placed it at each council person’s seat in advance of my remarks. As FOPAT came toward me waving her notes, I pulled the document from the table in front of Councilman VandenHul and held it up for FOPAT to read. 

I will make an opinionated comment here, FOPAT is now earning $25.00 per hour, perhaps she should actually perform her duties as Finance Officer instead of underwear shopping, measuring lap napkins, telling the police force how to do their jobs to the detriment of the maintainability of our police force and acting as interpreter between the council and legal counsel.  Oh by the way, she did manage to delete all those Notices of Quorum ’cause they are no longer on the website.  However the council still have their copies of the document, as do I.  Amazing.  Reminds me of a song written by Percy Mayfield, performed by Ray Charles, hit number 1 on the charts in 1961 upon its release and titled,  “Hit the road Jack.”  Or maybe a re-write of the lyric, Hit the road FOPAT and don’t cha come back no-more, no-more.  H-m-m?

          RHONDA BUSHBY (00:42:03.63)  Commentary on the community center and its operations.

          KENDRA HATLE  (00:45:50.10)  Commented on hearing results of input questions addressed to the council and have some type of public response to investigation of those issues presented during public input.  Emphasis on ive-streaming council meetings so those who cannot attend can see the          council in action.

          COUNCILWOMAN DARLA REPPE  (00:52:59.63)  Commented on a question posed to her by a constituent concerning the police office and a past police officer walking into the police building.  I would comment here that keys to the police office were to be handed to either the sheriff’s office or the DCI to maintain the integrity of any evidence stored within the evidence locker in the police department building.  Obviously FOPAT should not have a key because she is not in the chain of custody.

          MAYOR PRO-TEM LUKAS DRIESEN  (00:53:43.07)  Comments on Outdoor Warning System i.e. Weather Sirens.  These can be activated by the   local fire department as well as Union County can remotely activate those emergency sirens.

(00:55:44.10) Mayor Driesen respectfully requests residents to remove trash receptacles from the city streets as soon as possible after trash collection to help keep the streets clear and safe. 

                   I (Vickie)would add my opinion here on the point of the trash cans.  In my travels I have been through many municipalities and I notice the trash receptacles in their streets.  Two things I notice:  One, when the receptacle lids are not down and latched with garbage leaking into the streets and onto neighboring properties. Two, when the receptacles are left all week to stand in the streets like little blue outhouses putting a “bad smell” (analogy) to the community’s public image.


Manager Landon Nygard gave an update to the operations of the community center with regard there is now a nightly special, two video machines have been installed, talks are in the process to establish a facility website and signage.

There was also discussion on age for driving golf carts on the course, under age golf cart operators in general and steps the council can take the concept of “fast ‘n’furious” out of the golf cart operations within the city limits.  Suggestions ranged from expulsion from the golf course for under-age non-golfers operating family golf carts on the course and city streets, liability waiver signed by parents who allow their under-age drivers to drive on the golf course and accept personal liability for any tortuous actions by those unsupervised young drivers.

(01:08:41.23)  AGENDA ITEM #10–  LEGAL UPDATES    Attorney Felts presented:

          2023-03 RESOLUTION REPEAL 2.5 POLICE POLICY Motion was made by Councilwoman Peeples, Second Councilman VandenHul and with no further discussion vote was taken  Vote X3 Ayes  Approve the repeal and removal of On-Call time and Pay from the City of Alcester Police Policy and Procedure Manual.

          2023-04 RESOLUTION REPEAL  5.6 POLICY PERSONNEL MANUAL 2020.  Motion was made by Councilwoman Peeples, Second Councilwoman Reppe with no further discussion vote was taken.  Vote X3 Ayes  Approval of the repeal and removal of 5.6 section of the City of Alcester Personnel Manual.

 (01:12:41.67)  AGENDA ITEM #11  – POLICE DEPT.- Executive session to discuss candidate police chief Jared Thompson at 7:12 P.M. out of executive session at 7:24 P.M.  Motion to hire Jared Thompson at $27.00 per hour effective immediately upon his acceptance of the terms of hire as          Chief of Police of Alcester.       Vote X3 Ayes

(01:13:16.73)   AGENDA ITEM #12 – WASTEWATER FACILITY UPDATE AND INVOICE APPROVAL –  Motion to approve $18,417.55     Engineering fees to Banner Engineering.  Vote X3 Ayes.

(01:14:10.87)  AGENDA ITEM #13  – COUNCIL MEETING DAY CHANGE  Motion made by Councilman VandenHul, Second from Councilwoman Peeples to move regular meeting days from the First (1st) and Third (3rd) Mondays of the month to the First (1st) and Third (3rd) Tuesdays of the      month.  Vote X3 Ayes

(01:16:45.90)  AGENDA ITEM #14  – FINANCE OFFICE UPDATES –  Approval of March warrants.  Motion by Councilwoman Reppe with second coming from Councilwoman Peeples.  Vote X3 Ayes

(01:19:31.53)  AGENDA ITEM #15  EXECUTIVE SESSION IF NEEDED –   Not needed

(01:19:43.13)  AGENDA ITEM #16  ADJOURN  7:52 P.M.

Contact City Council

Councilwoman Darla Reppe             605-934-2602

Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples           605-934-2096

Councilman Lukas Driesen               605-934-

Councilman Kyle VandenHull          605-934-

Patricia Jurrens                                  605-934-2517