06/08/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

“When you can’t make them see the light, make them feel the heat…”

attributed to Ronald Reagan

Mayor Haeder called the June 7, 2021, 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 Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman  Cyndi Peeples, Councilman Brian Johnson, Councilman Curtis Keiser and Attorney Larry Nelson standing in the stead of his son City Attorney Sam Nelson.

Agenda Item #3– Approval of the Agenda – was called, with no changes and no discussion the agenda was approved as presented.

Agenda Item #4 – Approval of the minutes for May 3, May 17, and May 24, 2021 – was called and with no changes and no discussion the minutes were approved as transcribed.  I would like to note here it is uncertain who exactly is taking the minutes.  Is it the Alcester Finance Officer (whose duty it is ), is it the finance office aide Wanda Halverson,  is it those from the city attorney or perhaps a collusion of any two or three of them? H-m-m

Agenda Item #5 – Public Input – Public input was called with three responses. 

First up was Gordon Richard responding as a citizen of Alcester and not as a reporter for the Alcester-Hudson Union newspaper. (02:29.73)  Mr. Richard commented that as a resident of three years in the city of Alcester, he was shocked to hear of Chief Jeff Christie’s departure from the Alcester City Police Department.  Mr. Richard stated he had come to know Chief Christie, to appreciate his work as Chief of Police and recognised Chief Christie’s consummate professionalism in his performance of his profession.  Mr. Richard went on to recommend and request, “is there anything the city can do to atone for the circumstances which led to Chief Christie’s decision?” (paraphrased by me)  Mr. Richard received a less than satisfactory response.

Next to comment was Theresa Deem, local businesswoman and owner of the Alcester Bar. (03:31.10)  Ms. Deem asked the council, “just what is the ‘chain-of-command’ as it relates to the city-owned building she leases and in which she houses her bar operation.  Ms. Deem asked who is on the liquor board (who ostensibly controls the building which houses the Alcester Bar)?  Ms. Deem received an answer which named the council members who sit on that board.  (08:41.23)  Planning and Zoning committee should be made up of three council members and three property owning residents rather than the city council in its entirety.  When the city councils acts as zoning commission it causes confusion for the resident tax payers.  I is redundant and not open government (in my opinion).

Last to comment was Vickie Larsen, me.  (07:51.67)  1)  I started out with my FOIA/Sunshine request #05-07-2021 second request for access to select water-bills for properties ( one of which is under the control of a Hammit Family trust) with only non-residential garages.  I asked for access to the garbage fees charged, the minimum water billing, and street maintenance fees charged and I have been ignored.

2)  I introduced Nacha rules (08:11.33) ( with regard to the proper, prompt pay of payrolls and HSA account set-ups as listed in the May 17, 2021, meeting agenda item #10 which listed HSA Bank Account a. Motion to set up HSA Bank Account, Premier Bank, Dan Haeder, David Larsen, Patricia Jurrens and Wanda Halverson as Signers.(12:36.77) Regarding signers on any account, finance office aid Halverson should not be included on the signatory listed as she is not the mayor, she is not the president of the council and she is not the head of a financing department.  In emergency situations if the mayor is not available the city still has a back up for the dual signage required for official documents.  In addition the part-time aid position was put into place to help Finance Officer Mike Kezar during his time of medical recovery process.  Until that time Finance Officer Kezar was well able to fulfill the duties of the Finance Office on his own with occasional advice from the city attorney, other finance officers and the South Dakota Municipal League.

3)  I distributed handouts to the six council members. (09:03.40)  Contained within those handouts was a document * (nacha.org/content/payments-myth-busting) regarding payroll payments,:” ‘direct deposit payroll will be available in employee accounts by 9a.m. Friday to withdraw or make payments’ and if made Friday morning, ‘the funds will be available to the employee by 5p.m.using the ACH Networks Same Day ACH capability.'” *Another document contained within my handouts to the council was an email exchange between myself and Shaun Van Oort of AB Business Solutions. (vendor from which the city purchased the eight (8) tablets)  An allegation made by Finance Officer Pat Jurrens that I had posed as an employee of the Alcester Finance Office. The date on that email exchange was September 21, 2020, at which time I was a seated city councilwoman.  I was unable to give lie to Jurrens accusation made to the council because I was handed the document generated over two days time (as claimed by Kay) by Councilwoman Kay and was allowed only five (5) minutes to look at the document with no real expectation to read, respond or ability to offer up evidence to support my denial.  In the courts of our land, the accused is given time to offer up evidence and make defense argument. The charge must tell the time, date and place that the criminal act allegedly took place, the alleged involvement of the accused, and the details of the crime itself.  After being notified, the defendant has a certain period of time to file an answer admitting or denying the allegations made in the complaint. This statement by the defendant usually explains why the plaintiff should not prevail. It may also offer additional facts, or plead an excuse.  When I raised those questions, I was told I did not have the right.  *Finally a copy of the May 24, 2021, minutes which described the circus type juggling of proper procedure involving the 2021-09 Ordinance Temporary Ordinance. In addition (08:41.23)  Planning and Zoning committee should be made up of three council members and three property owning residents rather than the city council in its entirety.  When the city councils acts as zoning commission it causes confusion for the resident tax payers.  It is redundant and not open government (in my opinion).

(09:50.40)  I spoke to the Water Tower which ran out of water.  An alarm had been in place which would send a signal to South Lincoln Rural Water letting them know the level in our water tower was low. at that point they would contact the city so they could stop a water tower failure. Perhaps that should be checked on, maybe the alarm system should be repaired or replaced.

(10:27.20)  I spoke to the donation plea I had received by mail on city letterhead asking for my financial help ’cause there was still $150,000 matching funds waiting for our donation and to be debt free.  Folks check out agenda item #7 Community Center bond.  Doesn’t look to be debt free to me.  In addition, the operational debts incurred by the community center will fall on the good-will, faith and taxes of the citizens of Alcester and those who shop here. 

(11:11.13)  I spoke to the meeting that mayor Haeder and Councilman Curtis Keiser (I believe) had with the Union County Commissioners on June 1, 2021, at 11:00 a.m. in which mayor Haeder attempted to get county law enforcement coverage for Alcester due to the Police Chief leaving as a result of the city attempt to ‘screw the police department’ and mayoral request fell flat.  I told the council of previous attempt to dump the Alcester police department in favor of county sheriff department coverage.  I also told the council to be sure and check with residents of Hudson on how well that has worked for them.  County seat cities do well with County Sheriff coverage but outlying cities don’t.

Agenda Item #6 – Ordinance 2021-09 Mary Jane Ordinance.  Council still messing around with a temporary ordinance.  Finally the council after an amendment to correct Finance Office error in Section 1, line 4 to the correct number of SDCL 34-20G-72 decided to sit on their hands until the state decides what it is going to do.

Agenda Item #7 – Community Center Bond- AMKO Mark DeRaney spoke to the amount of money the city was looking at to pay out for city stated maximum debt on the community building.  Mr. DeRaney stated (26:02.93) “I got a call last week from Pat saying, ‘We need some money to finish up for the community center'”.  Finance Officer Jurrens seems to be using a bait and switch scam where she trims off certain costs of the community building project so it looks more attractive to the taxpayers to get the program passed, only to add those costs-plus-some under the guise of ordinances, fees, bonds and etc. to cover the funds she trimmed. 

(32:07.87)  Councilman Curtis Keiser asks Mr. DeRaney for a definition and clarification of Revenue Bond.  (37:00.47)  Councilman Curtis Keiser asks about the additional amount of $150K.  Now folks there was the land purchase which I do believe was $220K, so is that included in what is now listed at $575K including Underwriters 12% discount, costs of issuance, deposit to Debt Service Reserve Fund (DSRF), deposit to Project Construction Fund and with a Rounding Amount. Handout below for those of you who like to run the numbers?

(see insert )

Agenda Item #8 – Legal Updates – Attorney Larry Nelson

Mr. Nelson addresses the Banner Engineering agreement Updates and changes.

Agenda Item #9 – Police Department –  mayor announced the appointment of interim police chief, Austin Schuller.  Mayor Haeder stated the necessity of this move as the requirement of  SD DCI (South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation) to have contact with the Chief of Police, we no longer have a police chief so it was necessary to make an emergency appointment of a police chief and certain predilections of the finance officer to overstep her authority may make it necessary for the DCI to investigate, again. Folks this was the entity which investigated the election violations of Finance Officer Jurrens and which found evidence of credible election violation on the part of the Finance Officer.  Please note mayor Haeder’s comment which relates to how valuable our police chief is and how important making amends to our Chief of Police Jeff Christie for a fellow employee’s retaliatory actions. (46:22.97)  Mayor I can certainly see why you should be ashamed to look Chief Jeff in the eye, when you refused to rein in Finance Office Jurrens and back Chief Christie from the scurrilous excoriations of the all-protected FOPat.  I heard of a previous councilmember comment made we cannot afford to fire/lose the finance officer. As well as another a councilmember comment, “screw the police department”.  WOW  Evidently Mayor Haeder is willing to lose our Police Chief and endanger community safety all in the name of protect the FO.  Screw the police department and we are all screwed.  “We cannot replace our finance officer, SURE we can.  We hire a temporary accountant and we advertise for a new finance officer.  I feel certain there are many young accountants willing to work and do the job of city finance office for us.

Agenda Item #10 – Department Head Updates

Agenda Item #11– Purple Heart Trail proposition

Agenda Item #12 – Back Bar Door Replacement – While the Deem’s bar operation should be safe and secure, the $4555.00 price tag seemed high.  I must admit there was no supportive documentation on the requirements of what appears to be one pricy door presented for public consumption.  Now Folks you need to realize it is the city’s expense. not the Deem’s to replace the door of a city owned building.  The city insurance should pay for the costs of door replacement. 

Agenda Item #13 – July 5, 2021, Council first July meeting date moved back to July 12, 2021.  Two council members have stated they will be absent for either of those  meetings dates.  Councilwoman Peeples and Councilwoman Talbott.

Agenda Item #14 – Finance Office Updates – (01:09:33.90) 

SO WAS CHIEF CHRISTIE PAID ALL MONEYS TO WHICH HE WAS LAWFULLY ENTITLED????? 

Somehow I have my doubts knowing the vindictiveness of FOPat.

Agenda Item #15 – Alcester Community Center – meeting on Tuesday.

Agenda Item #16  – Fair Update – Bull Riding

Agenda Item #17 – Executive Session 1.25-2.3 Legal counsel on LITIGATION/LAWSUIT REVIEW.  Entered into closed session at 8:07 p.m. and back into session at 8:15 p.m.

Agenda Item #18 – Adjourn  Council adjourned at 8:16 p.m.

ADDITIONAL NOTES:

It was announced during the council meeting the street chip-seal coating was completed Monday, June 7, 2021.  Interesting ’cause it appears Beck Drive and Dakota Street in front of the city offices was chip-sealed, however Union street between Third Street and Second Street is untouched.  This street seems to have been orphaned out of the city street family tree.  Folks residents on the block were left to dig their vehicles out of the muddy mess ignored by the city.  This ‘street’ does not even have enough small to medium pebbles to be called a gravel road, yet the residents are still required to pay the $ per foot street maintenance fee?  Folks go for a ride, see for yourselves the state of that street.

However it seems after months of me mentioning the failure to build a retaining wall on the variance awarded to Sunnyside Storage, it does appear to be in the process of construction.

Oh and one other thing, this has to do with Tiny homes and what can happen with Patti-zoning and Buy-me-a-variance running amok.  The city of Alcester has in the past entertained allowing Tiny homes in Alcester.  Yeah Folks, it might be worth a look-see…There is a tiny home North of Hwy 46 on the east edge of Beresford.  First came the tiny home, then came the tiny-garage and now I noticed another tiny-type storage shed on what appears to be the same parcel of ground.  

In theory it is the same as combining lots along Beck Drive and selling them off for $15K.  Last I knew, the HRC was going to have to sell each lot for $25K just to make the balloon payment and now it appears there is a fire-sale on those properties.

Contact City Council

Mayor Dan Haeder                   605-934-2287

Councilman David Larsen        605-934-2434

Councilwoman Darla Reppe    605-934-2602

Councilwoman Linda Talbot    605-934-1849

Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples

Councilman Brian Johnson

Councilman Curtis Keiser

05/31/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

Don’t be afraid of being outnumbered. Eagles fly alone, Pigeons flock together.

Unfortunately I missed the May 24th meeting, however the meeting was taped but due to some technical difficult only the last half hour or so was recorded successfully.

Please note the city attorney was not present and here we have mayor Haeder and FO pat carrying-on without legal counsel. The Special meeting commenced at 6:00 p.m. with Councilman David Larsen, Councilman Brian Johnson, Councilman Curtis Keiser, Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples, Councilwoman Talbott and mayor Haeder present. AWOL were Councilwoman Darla Reppe and City Attorney Sam Nelson. This was a special meeting solely for the “emergency” purpose (if the agenda is to be believed)of discussing the South Dakota marijuana laws and the city of Alcester’s enactment of it’s own ordinances regarding the licensing, dispensing and growing/harvesting of marijuana. So mayor Haeder and FO pat think it is prudent to carry on without the interpretation, language advice of the city attorney? REALLY?

I find it utterly amazing after viewing what video was retrievable, the council weighed in on legal issues without city attorney Sam Nelson present to advise them. Particularly after comments made by former councilman Marcus Ireland and city attorney Sam Nelson concerning semantics and the language of law in the May 17, 2021, meeting.

Take special note that FO pat took up a position in front of the council to spew her hear-say presumably from the city attorney on the issues involved in the abandonment of an alley bordering on the property of Joe Constance. Unfortunately the past council and mayor have religiously accepted the squawkings of the city bookkeeper as she “interprets’ the law and other non-financial agenda items for them. Yeah right. I sincerely hope that the new council persons do their own research.

Another concern is what appears to be a proclivity for the city bookkeeper to seek the advice of the city attorney on her own initiative. WHY? Why is the city bookkeeper requesting legal opinions which results in billable hours, without mayor Haeder or the Alcester City Council formal approval. Dear heaven the council could just as well ask pinterest for an interpretation opinion, oh wait witnessing the hear-say opinion via FO pat it appears they are! Just curious about those phone calls.

‘Til next meeting.

05/17/2021 A VOICE FROM THE GALLERY

IF YOU ARE TESTING MY WATERS, YOU BETTER KNOW HOW TO SWIM!

MAY 17, 2021 ALCESTER CITY COUNCIL MEETING

Mayor Dan Haeder called the May 17, 2021, 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 Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman  Cyndi Peeples, Councilman Brian Johnson and City Attorney Sam Nelson.

After the call for Agenda Item #3 Approval of the Agenda Mayor Haeder announced that Agenda Item #10 – HSA Bank Account was no longer necessary, without any explanation as to why it was no longer necessary.  Did the Mayor Haeder/FO Pat decide an HSA was no longer needed, Did the Mayor Haeder/FO Pat decide a separate account was no longer needed, Did Mayor Haeder/FO Pat decide they wanted to use another Bank, or Did Mayor Haeder/FO Pat decide that FO Pat just could not handle direct deposit banking or was this another issue where Mayor Haeder/FO Pat felt the public just didn’t have the right to know.  I strongly suggest folks you ask the council WHY?  Those individuals on tap to be signatories were Mayor Haeder, Council President David Larsen, Finance Officer Patricia Jurrens and Finance Office worker Wanda Halversen.  Council approved the Agenda with Agenda Item #10 – HSA (Health Savings Account) omitted.

Agenda Input #4 – Public Input was called. 

I answered I had public input.  Initially I had planned for a couple items but upper most was my written request to be considered for the Ward III vacancy.  I have made it a practice (depending on the nature of the document) to send requests via email to the entire council and hand-delivering the document in written form with a certificate of service attached to the document for a signature acknowledging the city office did in fact get the document so the document doesn’t ‘disappear’ or ‘get lost’.  However Finance Officer Patricia Jurrens refused to sign the certificate acknowledging document delivery.  So folks now it gets down to a she-said, he-said situation and who is the council going to believe?  Does Bookkeeper Jurrens do this with legal documents, documents from all Alcester residents or just the select few of us that bookkeeper Jurrens deigns as beneath her ( and I do not mean the Kama Sutra-like definition of “beneath” her)?

I stated my request for an interview with the council for the position of council person for Ward III looking for recognition I was indeed going to be allowed to interview with the new council which included the latest council member addition.  As you will note in the video there was a long period of silence after my statement, the council neither accepted nor denied my request.  I did not present any other comments I had for public comment, other than an observation of mini-motorcycles and the apparent age group of the operators on public streets and what appeared to excessive speed relating to their ability to control.

Mayor Haeder called for any additional input to which Miss Melissa Kay responded acting as a quasi telephonic go-between former council member Marcus Ireland and the city council.  Mr. Ireland had two points to make in the public input.  1) Mr. Ireland requested that all proposed ordinances/resolutions be placed on the city website for community full access.  Some community members do not receive the newspaper and therefore lose the ability to comment formally or informally on any proposed ordinances/resolutions before they are passed. 2)  Mr. Ireland offered up comments on the language, semantics and etc. on the issue of medical cannabis and arbitrary denial of permitting for medical cannabis.

Mayor Haeder added his comment on the continued spoofing/scam using his email.

Agenda Item #5 Ward III Vacancy – Interview of candidate – A discussion took place on the need for me to interview, since I had just recently interviewed.  I took the position that since the Ward II vacant seat had been filled and it was appropriate for me to be able to make my presentation to what amounted to a new council.  Executive Session was called and entered into at 6:19 P.M.  My name was called first for interview and I entered the interview session at approximately 6:20 P.M.   I passed out a booklet outlining specific October 2020 historical data I wished to address in full with Councilman Larsen, Councilwoman Reppe, Councilwoman Talbott and Mayor Haeder.  I also want to make sure the two newest additions to the council, Councilwoman Peeples and Councilman Johnson were informed of the facts not hear-say and to off-set former councilwoman Melissa Kay’s comment in the May 3, 2021, council meeting where she willfully breached executive session as it related to me and found in 05/03/2021 A Voice From the Gallery blog and video (0:36:53.23).  I also addressed and enumerated all the accusations and allegations made in that October session to set the record straight with specificity to each allegation/accusation made.  These comments and defenses were directed to Councilman Larsen, Councilwoman Reppe, Councilwoman Talbott and Mayor Haeder who had received what I would characterize as biased opinion and what I would characterize as a false swearing since the allegations were in written form.  Folks I was barred from having an unbiased witness to a interrogation where I faced the city lawyer duly seated at the South Dakota Bar, two wanna-be lawyers who practiced the fine art of legal badgering where, “… Harassment of a witness by legal counsel during questioning, where a witness is subjected to embarrassing or derisive questions where an answer is not expected and serve as argument posing as a question, e.g. who would believe any words coming out of your mouth? ( Badgering the Witness, THELAW.COM LAW DICTIONARY & BLACK’S LAW DICTIONARY 2ND ED. (https://dictionary.thelaw.com/badgering-the-witness/)

Or the prize question asked of me by my interrogator, “…can you read?” 

Also in that city council judgment mix one adds a secretary for a Hawarden attorney, a school teacher, a retired school teacher and a Mayor with a marginal grasp of the job description of a mayor. Folks in Executive Session, if you are the target of the inquisition it becomes she said, she said because there is no record made and in my case no one bothered due diligence into the vacuous accusations.  Just a fear of my honesty, the consequences of my pre-council research on SRTS or my ability to vote No on half-assed, vacuous proposals as explained by the bookkeeper!

I worked my way through the booklet I provided to the council members, page by page, point-by-point and at the end of my presentation I asked for questions.   Folks, the faces on Mount Rushmore have more facial movement than was exhibited by the four faces of those who judged me in that October 7, 2020, meeting.  I had no expectation of being seated but make no mistake I went down fighting with the truth.

Upon my exit of the council room at 6:40 P.M., Ward III Vacancy Candidate Curtis Keiser entered the room for his interview.  At 6:48 P.M. Mr. Keiser left the interview and at 6:50 P.M. Mayor Haeder declared the council out of Executive Session.  At that point motion was called to seat Curtis Keiser as Ward III Councilman and approved.  Congratulations Mr. Keiser on your successful seating.  I will offer my advice to the newest members of the Alcester City Council, Councilwoman Peeples, Councilman Johnson and Councilman Keiser IF the remaining members could do this to me, they can and will the same to you.  Oh yeah, one more thing Finance Officer Patricia Jurrens has no part in Executive Sessions unless it deals with a bookkeeping problem or her own deeds.  She is not the seventh council member!

Agenda Item #6 – Council Committee assignments were handed out.

Agenda Item #7 – Department Updates.

Agenda Item #8 – Legal Updates

Call for Executive Session for the purposes of 1-25-2.3 Legal discussion. In Executive Session at 7:03 P.M. -7:14 P.M. Since the next item immediately following the Executive Session under Legal Updates is titled the Boyce Waiver Authorization one can make a presumption of cause and effect (LAWSUIT/ LITIGATION).  (35:30.90) I asked for permission to speak, I asked what the Boyce Waiver Authorization was.  Alcester City Attorney Sam stated this was an authorization to waive a possible conflict-of-interest with Boyce Law.  Folks, Boyce is a Sioux Falls law firm whose area of practice list includes the field of practice described as Alternative Dispute Resolution ( Arbitration and or Mediation).  With that said, Waiver is described as a legally binding provision where either party in a contract agrees to voluntarily forfeit a claim without the other party being liable. Waivers can either be in written form or some form of action.  So the City Council voted to authorize the Waiver.

Still under agenda item #8 Legal Ordinance 2021-09 Temporary Ordinance regarding the Issuance of Local Medical Cannabis permits and/or licenses.  Discussion on what city officials are allowance to do and not do with regard to issuing permits or licenses to sell and/or grow medical Cannabis.

Agenda Item #9 – Deed Transfer from City of Alcester to Alcester Industrial Board described as Parcel 01.01.23.1002, Tract 2, Block 23 Original Alcester City and Parcel 100.00.21.5055. School Lot 2 SE1/4, SE1/4 less 5,676 square feet of Right–Of-Way.  Important question here is the area where the city offices are located and any rents?  Discussion with City Attorney Sam Nelson (54:06.57)  Council voted to approve the Transfer of Deed.  Unfortunately a map of parcels and lots involved in this transfer was not available to the public, therefore for clarity the city office should be contacted for a copy of the exact Parcels involved.

Agenda Item #10– deleted considered not necessary (see my comments under the approval of the agenda)

Agenda Item #11 – Hire Seasonal Personnel

Agenda Item #12 – Executive Session for 1-25-2.1 Personnel was called.  Folks this habit of what appears to be the dodging of open session rules by cloaking  conversations and discussion with impunity outside the realm of the proper Executive Session Rules.  SDCL 1-25-2.1  The council entered into a what has the appearance of a routine, monthly Executive Session for Personnel purposes started at 7:47 P.M. through 8:05 P.M.  No business came out of the session as usual. Folks like the saying:

“I don’t trust—Words

I even question—Actions

But I never doubt—Patterns

Agenda Item #13 – Reminders and Update.  One item under was a discussion which dealt with a proposal for the garbage pick-up to remain on one side of the street permanently to, “…save our streets…”  Councilwoman Linda Talbott and et al (1:06:42.5) expressed her opinion that the one-side-of-the-street garbage pickup should stay in force.  How about it folks?  Do you want multitudes of  garbage cans along YOUR street frontage with the Big Blue Garbage cans squatting and drizzling garbage there for three or four days?   HEY LET THE CITY KNOW HOW YOU FEEL!  CALL THE CITY! EMAIL THE CITY!  TELL THEM YOU WANT THE STREETS REPAIRED, FIXED NOT HAVE SOME DIRTY OLD GARBAGIE BLUE BUCKET BANDAID PUT ON THEM.  WE HAVE PAID THE STREET MAINTENANCE FEE FOR THREE OR FOUR YEARS NOW WHERE IS THE MONEY GOING.  FINANCE OFFICER JURRENS WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH THE STREET MAINTENANCE FEE AND THE REGULARLY BUDGETED FUNDS COLLECTED BY TAX TO REPAIR OUR STREETS?  SO FOLKS ASK WHAT THE ANNUAL BUDGET FOR STREET MAINTENANCE IS WITHOUT THE STREET MAINTENANCE ORDINANCED FEE?  WHAT IS THE SEPARATE  TOTALS OF THE STREET REPAIRS.  FOLKS JUST ONE YEAR WORTH OF MAINTENCE FEE WAS EATEN UP BY THE BILL FOR THE 20 YEAR OLD WHEEL LOADER REPAIR!  THEN THERE IS THE STREET SWEEPER WHICH COST AS I RECALL SOMETHING LIKE $225,000.00 AND IS NOW ONLY USED DURING RAINSTORMS AS I UNDERSTAND IT, IS DUE TO WATER SUPPLY ISSUES.

Agenda Item #14 – Adjourn 

Council adjourned at 8:08 P.M.

Contact City Council

Mayor Dan Haeder                   605-934-2287

Councilman David Larsen        605-934-2434

Councilwoman Darla Reppe    605-934-2602

Councilwoman Linda Talbot    605-934-1849

Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples

Councilman Brian Johnson

Councilman Curtis Keiser

05/11/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

(01:26:55.) Mayor Haeder says, “…it’s irrelevant…”

05/03/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

Folks the situation with the lease between Union County and the City of Alcester had its start in1970 when the two entities entered into a lease where the City of Alcester agreed to lease city owned property to Union County for purposes of 4-H and the Union County Fair. 

1970 LEASE

1980 LEASE

Please note, “…This lease is not assignable without the written consent of Lessor (the City of Alcester)…

TIME-LINE OF EVENTS

November 30, 2010 Six Month Lease ($50.00 per month) between Union County and Keith Anderson for the Hoop Barn Building.  Under Utilities:  “If requested by the Lessor (Union County), in addition to the rent set forth in paragraph two, herein, Lessee (Mr. Anderson) shall also pay all expenses for utilities on the property during the term of the lease as well as all expenses for utilities used on the property during any period during which Lessee has possession of the property.”

December 7, 2010 Four Month Lease ($150.00 per month) between Union County and AGA (Bill Boyer) for the Union County Fair Ground’s Parking Lot. 

March 8, 2011

         

Resolution UCC 2011.001

September 6, 2011 Public Properties – ” the board set the property and minimum prices to be advertised on the public properties available for lease.  The board set the minimum bids on the following property:  Beef Barn: $450/ $45 per month/$20 per week; Show ring – $1200.00; $120 per month/$40 per week; Exhibit building (excludes meeting room) – $1000/$100 per month/25 per week; Hoop Building – $500/$50 per month/$25 per week; Fairgrounds Parking area (Jan thru April , one month extension with board approval) $1250./$150 per month-no weekly…”

September 29, 2011

September 1, 2012,  Union County Commissioner Meeting

          Under Public Auction, “…A public auction was held to auction the fairground buildings and property as advertised.  The fairground buildings were auctioned at the yearly rate and allowed to be pro-rated by month…Farmers Coop Society, was the bidder for the Fairground parking area @ $1250…”

October 13, 2015, Union County Commissioner Meeting

          Under Auction, “As advertised, the grandstand area on the Alcester Fairgrounds was put up for action for leasing purposes.  Opening bid started at $1250 with the only bidder being Farms Cooper Society (Ryan Schoenfelder)  Lease agreement will be signed.”

January 19, 2016,  Union County Commissioner Meeting

          Under Fair, “Fair manager Janet Lingle discussed with the board the possibility of the Farmer’s Coop’s plan to build a building on the fairgrounds in Alcester.  Because the county has a lease with city of Alcester for 99 years, the fairboard and commissioners will be involved in this process.  Lingle will gather more information regarding the building.”

August 2, 2016, Union County Commissioner Meeting

          Under Public Auction, “…Discussion took place on the auction items for lease.  Fair manager Lingle and SA Miller present for discussion.  Discussion took place on the current lease agreements.  Motion by Headid, second by Karpen to follow the contract for the penalties in the lease agreement as written.  Motion Carried.”

August 16, 2016, Union County Commissioner Meeting

          Under Lease Agreement, ” Ken Ehrp, Farmers Coop Society, met with the board regarding a lease agreement on county property. (Previous decision-August 2, 2016, minutes) Following a discussion on the lease and the condition of the fairground property, motion by Karpen, second by Headid to follow the contract lease agreement to the full extent.  The fee is $5000.00 and grounds must be restored to its original pre-lease condition.  The fair manager will do an assessment of the property to determine compliance.  Motion carried.  Vote: 3 Aye, 1 Nay, (Schempp) and 1 Abstain (Ustad)  Motion carried.

08/16/2016 a Voice From the Gallery

          “Councilman Mark Dykstra resigned from the Union County Fairboard and according to Councilman Dykstra, “he just could not in good conscience put up with dumping grain on city ground”. He finally ‘got it’ that Mayor Pete Larsen was acting responsibly by forcing the Union County Commissioners to get city permission to sublet the city ground and bar any grain dumping on city property. After Mayor Larsen’s visit with the commissioners, they did run the city ‘fairground’ land sub-leases past the city council. But alas when Mayor Rick Johnson and Mayor Tom Glas took office it appears the commissioners no longer felt the need to get Alcester city approval anymore and with no one to hold their collective feet to the fire, the commissioners got away without city approval.”

August 30, 2016, Union County Commissioner Meeting        

          City of Alcester – “Representatives from the city of Alcester, Mark Dykstra, Thomas Glass and David Larsen met with the board to discuss the $5000 penalty imposed on the Farmers Coop Society (see minutes of August 2 and 16).  Dykstra asked if the county could impose partial fine now and defer the remainder of the balance until 2017; also questions where they $5000 would be placed as the city owns the property-leased to the county for 99 years.  Chairman asked Dykstra if he would be the city council representative on the fairboard as he resigned from the fairboard recently.  He indicated that he would be willing if he was reconsidered for the position.

So Mayor Haeder, irrelevant?

So let’s address the written permissions from the city for the county to sub-lease.  Where are they?   NOT RELEVANT!

Now about the destruction of our land?  Still happening!  So where is the penalty money and the “put-back” to the way it was when the county first leased it.  Who in Hades is watching this?  H-m-m  Mayor you are in charge, where is your over sight?   Lease ends on January 2, 2079.  Just how much more damage can happen? NOT RELEVANT!

Let’s address liabilities mentioned by the sub-leases of the county?  Union County has taken great pains to protect itself from liabilities engendered by its lessees.  In those leases Union County appears to fail to protect the City of Alcester, the Primary Lessor.  NOT RELEVANT? 

So if anyone suffers an injury due to the sub-lease by Union County, apparently the county is protected by their lease but as actual owners of the land, just where does that place the City of Alcester.  It seems to me, the City of Alcester and its tax-paying residents are in the TAG-YOU’RE-IT! end of the line.  NOT RELEVANT?

Now to the water issue.  Repairs?  Check out the lease provisions in the County’s sub-leases with bidders for the City property.  Specifically the Utilities.  Ya know electric, water and so forth.  Oh yeah that water we buy from South Lincoln Water and has been leaking.  Yeah that water, me boyo!  You appear to believe it is okay to delay, play, repairing the leak, instead you are satisfied with turning the water off  to the fairgrounds when the fairgrounds are not in use.  Then when there is a need for water at the fairgrounds, you give someone a wrench to turn the water on and allow thousands of gallons of water to leak.  Ya ever think how many gallons of precious water is wasted?  Ya ever think how much those wasted gallons of water cost us, you remember us…Alcester taxpayers.  NOT RELEVANT?

Folks think about it, the council approved $12, 629.37 repairs to fix a twenty year old wheel loader ’cause it was necessary.  So tell me folks, which is the higher priority, WATER or some relic piece of machinery.  Like the finance officer, the relic machinery can be replaced or rented, WATER cannot be replaced!

05/03/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

Being a leader doesn’t require a title; Having a title doesn’t make you one.

Mayor Dan Haeder called the May 3, 2021, 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 Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman Melissa Kay and City Attorney Sam Nelson with Councilman Marcus Ireland participating via telephone. 

Agenda Item #3 (old council) – Mayor Haeder called for approval of the agenda.  At this point I spoke up (0:03:13.37) and called, “Point of Order” concerning the errors in the agenda which was poorly worded and was improper in agenda item placement, specifically the placement of Agenda Item #5 – public input  under new council after Agenda Items #2 under new council, #3 under new council starting a kerfuffle.  There was a admonition to me, “…you do not have the right…”  I disagree. Mayor Haeder continued with his obdurate question for approval of a error ridden agenda.  Mayor Haeder, it is your job to craft the agenda and make sure the city bookkeeper types it up properly.  Despite my warning about the error ridden agenda, Mayor Haeder got the question of agenda approval as far as discussion phase where Councilman Marcus Ireland pointed out the errors and voice his opinion the errors of language and error of placement be cured before any vote be taken.  So you will hear the kerfuffle of discussions of, “… how do we do this…”  Finally the amendments (change of language and change of order) to the agenda are in place and the approval of the agenda in finally voted.

Agenda Item #4 – Approval of the minutes of April 4th and April 19th council meetings was voted.

Agenda Item #5 – Warrants were approved by vote.

Agenda Item #6 – Adjourn the old council voted.  With that vote completed and Mayor Haeder declared the meeting adjourned at 6:12 p.m..  David Larsen, Melissa Kay went to seats in the gallery and Marcus Ireland remained on the telephone.

Agenda Item new council #1 At 6:14 p.m. Mayor-elect Dan Haeder called the new council meeting to order with Councilwoman Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman-elect Cyndi Peeples and City Attorney Sam Nelson present.

Agenda Item  new council agenda #2– New Council Oaths

Oath of Office administered to Cyndi Peeples Ward II by City Attorney Sam Nelson and Oath of Office administered to Dan Haeder Mayor by City Attorney Sam Nelson so with Councilwoman Peeples and Mayor Haeder seated the new council moved onto Agenda Item #5 moved forward by amendment during the old council.

Mayor Haeder appointed David Larsen to one of the two vacant Ward II seats, remaining council voted to approve the Mayor’s appointment.  Alcester City Attorney Sam Nelson administered the Oath of Office to Mr. Larsen. (0:20:48.00)

Agenda Item new council #5 – Public Input was called. 

Vickie Larsen responded with comments on the input agenda item placement. 

I raised the question (0:26:14.70) of SLRC Codified Law 9-14-42. Criminal background check of persons seeking employment with municipalities.  Each person over eighteen years of age seeking employment with a municipality shall submit, subject to the discretion of the municipality, to a state and federal criminal background investigation by means of fingerprint checks by the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The municipality may submit completed fingerprint cards to the Division of Criminal Investigation before the prospective new employee enters into service. Upon completion of the state and federal criminal background check, the Division of Criminal Investigation shall forward to the municipality all information obtained as a result of the check. Failure to submit or cooperate with the criminal background investigation is grounds for denial of an application.  Source: SL 2009, ch. 36, § 1.

I questioned last meeting about direct deposit of payroll checks.  Now we have HSA Health Savings Accounts so the city (Finance Officer) needs to add the option of Direct Deposit of those monies (0:26:33.23)

I asked why the wheel loader repair was not bid due to the $12,629.37 price tag (0:27:04.77)  Councilman David Larsen responded (0:30:06.40) the wheel loader is used frequently and the repairs needed a week to complete all repairs.  So I question the procedure of approving the expenditure for the wheel-loader after the fact of repair and without bid.  Councilman Larsen states this was an emergency situation. So was there no routine maintenance plan for this piece of ‘necessary’ use equipment that would have mitigated the magnitude of the repairs?

David Housen (sp) (0:31:48.70)addressed the council to share his interest in purchasing lots 10 & 11 on Beck Drive to build a ranch style. (not a Sh*thouse)

Melissa Kay former Alcester city councilwoman (0:36:53.23) addressed the council to share her opinion on the Ward III vacancy.  I address Ms. Kay as a  councilwoman ’cause her favored form of address ‘alderman’ is defined in the, “A Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue”, the Second Edition, Corrected and Enlarged by Francis Grose is defined in archaic form using the medial S, “a roafted turkey, garnifhed with faufages, the latter are fuppofed to reprefent the gold chain worn by thofe magiftratef”  and translated to “a roasted turkey, garnished with sausages, the latter are supposed to represent the gold chain worn by those magistrates.”  Heaven help me if I referred to her as a turkey with sausages around her neck.  Ms. Kay alleged ‘mis-conduct’ referring to an executive session in the October 7th meeting of the Alcester City Council and of which I was a seated councilwoman at the time.  At the motion of that executive session and in the discussion before approval, I insisted upon open, public session if the session were to discuss me and that my camera keep rolling to be fully, publicly open.  My concern was a he-said, she-said scenario which I wanted to protect against.   I was told I did not have any right and the closure of the session was to protect the council. I resisted and Alcester Police Officer Schuller had been summoned to be on-hand to forcibly remove my camera and ‘deal’ with me in the event I resisted.  My camera was rolling from the time of the opening of the meeting at 6:00 pm until the time I capitulated approximately 22 minutes later when I shut the camera down and surrendered the camera to Police Officer Schuller who removed the camera from the room.  The video of those 22 minutes of that meeting was not uploaded to my blog for public consumption but gives lie to the accusation of misconduct but does bring the question Ms. Kay your characterization of misconduct was in executive session, no video, no notes yet you feel comfortable bringing this into an open session?

Darla Reppe brought the question of when can bookings be made for the ‘community building”?

Marcus Ireland touched on the Christmas lights in the park.  The Christmas lights will be taken down.  The observation being made if we cannot take the Christmas lights in a timely manner, we should put them up.

With Marcus Ireland’s contribution, Public Input was at an end.

Agenda Item new council #3 – Executive session was called for the purpose of interview of appointment candidates.  The council entered into executive session at 6:44 p.m. Council members remaining:  Mayor Haeder, Councilman David Larsen, Councilwoman Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples and Marcus Ireland on telephone.

Order of interviews was Vickie Larsen Ward III, Dale Jurrens Ward III and Brian Johnson Ward II.

At 7:53 p.m. Mayor Haeder declared the council out of executive session.  Gallery entered the council room.  Ward III vacancy was not filled, no motion and no action.  Brian Johnson’s appointment to fill the Ward II vacancy was approved by the council four (4) ayes and one (1) abstention. Alcester City Attorney Sam Nelson administered the Oath of Office to Brian Johnson and Councilman Johnson took his seat at the council table.

Agenda Item new council #4 – Election of President and Vice-President of the Council was called with the nomination of Councilman David Larsen as President and the nomination of Councilwoman Linda Talbott as Vice-President.  In separate votes the council approve the nominations of Councilman Larsen and Councilwoman Talbott.

Agenda Item new council #6 – Department Updates

Agenda Item new council #7 – Legal Updates – City Attorney Sam Nelson announced he would be away for somewhere between 30-60 days. Executive Session for legal not needed.

Agenda Item new council #8 – Christmas Lights removed.

Agenda Item new council #9 – Alcester Fairgrounds water-leak.  (1:22:02.67)  Mayor Haeder was approached by Commissioner about a water leak and according to Mayor Haeder the conversation when like this, the commissioner told Mayor Haeder that the county leases this ground from the city therefore the city is monetarily responsible for the cost of repairs around $5K-$10K.  There is a meter in the tree line to the North of the Fairgrounds.  This is a city waterline and the city is charged for the water.  Note in the video ‘they’ and gosh only knows who ‘they’ are have been given a wrench to turn the water on during use of the fairgrounds and off (?) when the fairgrounds are not use.  Now folks to the best of my knowledge this water usage is not assessed to the county and obviously Mayor Haeder appears to be ignorant of the Lease language.  Wanna guess who is paying for that water usage?  (1:26:55.87) I attempted to give the Mayor information about the 99 year lease between the city and the county.  Yeah, the Mayor did not want to know the language of the Lease, he said it is irrelevant.  Really?  Mayor apparently wants to be willfully ignorant.

Agenda Item new council #10 – Lifeguards  approve hire.

Agenda Item new council #11 – Executive Session for 1-25-2.1 Personnel not needed – well Ms. Kay doesn’t need to discuss personnel(?) or what-ever-it-was-discussed anymore.

Agenda Item new council #12 – Finance Office- (1:33:49.93) I want to address one  item brought up by Mayor Haeder. Mayor Haeder brought up Mr. Nohava concerning money for Alcester EMS and donations for Alcester EMS.  Folks I would like to take this opportunity to do some math for you my background for this is the fact I handled the books and participated in the billing process for Alcester EMS while I was a part of the service and we responded to 100 medical calls per year.  There was an edict handed to the Alcester public, you will be transported to Hawarden Hospital whether you want to go there or not.  The billing fee for Alcester EMS was $300.00 load fee plus $8.00/per loaded mile for a total of $364.00 for a trip to Hawarden.  For a trip to a Sioux Falls Hospital was the $300 load fee plus $8.00/loaded mile fee for a total of $660.00.  So if an Alcester patient is charged $364.00 the Hawarden trip and then the Alcester patient has to go to Sioux Falls or Sioux City the Hawarden Ambulance (Jeff Nohava?) gets the $660.00 fee.  So the Alcester patient/insurance could possibly be charged $1024.00 for the same medical event.  Last I heard Mr. Nohava is receiving a $22.00/hour consulting fee from Alcester EMS.  In addition, the Alcester ambulance is now responding with the Alcester Fire Department with apparently no billing options but the expenses to roll the ambulance are still accruing.  So on the premise the Alcester EMS had 30 transports per year to Hawarden at $364.00 per call ($10,920.00) plus 70 transports per year to Sioux Falls at $660.00 ($46,200.00) equaling an income of $57,120.00.  Now compare that figure to the mandatory transport to Hawarden $364.00 per trip for 100 trips per year for a total income $36,400.00, a difference of $20,720.00 per year.  That is just the medical transports one has to add the negative operational cost (gas, oil wear and tear) of the ambulance on the fire calls.  Just saying, No wonder the ambulance is leaking money like micro-sand in the proverbial hour glass.

Agenda item new council #13 – re-evaluation of mask mandate.

Agenda item new council #13– (not my error here, that is what the agenda read) HRC update

Agenda item new council #14 – Fairboard Update-none

Agenda item new council #15 – Community Building  Kitchen equipment request for up to $75,000.00 for kitchen equipment.  Council voted approval.

Agenda item new council #16 – Update volunteer roster.  Council voted approval.

Agenda Item new council #17 – Adjourn  Council voted approval.  Adjourned at 9:07 p.m.

Contact City Council

Mayor Dan Haeder                   605-934-2287

Councilman David Larsen        605-934-2434

Councilwoman Darla Reppe    605-934-2602

Councilwoman Linda Talbot    605-934-1849

Councilwoman Cyndi Peeples

Councilman Brian Johnson

04/23/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

From 04/19/2021 City Council Meeting

Agenda Item #9 – Wheel Loader – bill $12,629.37  The Wheel Loader which was purchased used at a cost of $39,500.00 and as I remember to work on streets.  Ours wheel loader is a 2000 John Deere 544 (K) unknown hours with a speculative value somewhere around $15K to $30K in running condition.  So it appears the city just did $12,629.37 worth of repairs on a machine valued at or around $12K and that doesn’t include the hauling charge to and from Sioux City? (0:48:01.00) diagnosis:

*Leak in Boom Lift

*Replace O-rings

*Bad U joint

*Oil

*Rebuild Fuel Pump

*Full Service

*Alarms going off due to bad connector

*Issues with shifting

*Issues with Steering

(0:51:49.50) leave it up to the operators.  What operators?  Why would we leave a $12629.37 bill in the hands of operators?  Vote went to pay the $12,629.37 without question.

Folks the wheel loader item was presented as sitting in Sioux City for repairs and awaiting council approval of performing the above listed repairs. The approval happened in the April 19, 2021, city council meeting. So allowing the entire day of Tuesday for the myriad of repairs (or was the magnitude and severity of repairs greatly exaggerated), allowing Wednesday into Thursday for trucking of the wheel loader and leaves Friday to put said machine to work. SO WHO AUTHORIZED THE WORK PRIOR TO THE COUNCIL APPROVAL OF EXPENDITURE FOR THE ABOVE LISTING OF NEEDED REPAIRS APRIL 19, 2021. MAYOR? It is my belief that the Mayor alone cannot approve an expenditure of that monetary size. STREET DEPARTMENT HEAD? Does not have that authority and has not been given that authority by the council via the voters. FINANCE OFFICER? Way…way outside of her authority!

SO JUST WHO DID AUTHORIZE THE $12,629.37 WORTH OF REPAIRS IN ADVANCE OF COUNCIL APPROVAL?

Karma

Contact City Council

Mayor Dan Haeder                   605-934-2287

Councilman David Larsen        605-934-2434

Councilwoman Melissa Kay     712-557-0689

Councilwoman Darla Reppe    605-934-2602

Councilwoman Linda Talbot    605-934-1849

Councilman Marcus Ireland     605-370-1193

04/19/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

(ongoing criminality?)

Mayor Dan Haeder called the April 19, 2021, city council meeting to order with the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.  Council members present were Councilman David Larsen, Councilwoman Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, Councilwoman Melissa Kay and City Attorney Sam Nelson with Councilman Marcus Ireland participating via telephone. 

Agenda Item #3 – Mayor Haeder called for Approval of the Agenda.  An adjustment was made to add an additional Executive Session SDCL 1-25-2.3 Legal Contract to Agenda Item #6.  Like we really needed another Executive session last night.

Agenda Item #4 – Public Input – 

*Vickie Larsen – Wheel Loader throwing good money after bad.  (0:07:07.00)  Direct Deposit for employees.  I ask the question does the city offer direct deposit to its employees.  Finance Office Jurrens answer was no. (0:37:70)  So Why not?  Don’t know how FOPat?  Too much work for you?  I handed out ‘how to direct deposit’ to the council with a detailed packet to Mayor Haeder.  The detailed packet I handed to Mayor Haeder explained how direct deposit would save the city money. Folks keep this mind, ’til you get to the HSA Healthcare provider change Agenda Item #10 (0:54:42.90) and (0:55:14.87)

*Don Drown – (0:10:10.10) Junk and dead cars in the city.  Mr. Drown was asked by Attorney Sam Nelson, “have you contacted the city?” (0:14:01.53)  Mr. Drown answered, “…numerous times…” (0:14:12.23)  Attorney Sam tells Mr. Drown to keep contacting the city office to establish a time line (0:14:19.00)  Mayor Haeder says, to talk to him, talk to your councilmember (0:15:18.20)  I asked about the a complaint form (0:16:11.77)  FOPat answers the city has a form, really?  Why didn’t you have Mr. Drown fill out a complaint when he spoke to you all those numerous times?  Councilman David Larsen asked, “…Are they (the complaint forms) on the website (0:16:28.57)  FOPat replied, : No, but I can put them on it….What you waiting for, why are ya draggin’ your feet FOPat?

*Councilwoman Darla Reppe – (0:17:37.20) Musical Garbage Cans Game the Alcester home version.  Frost is out, time to change back.  (0:18:36.33) Councilwoman Talbott thinks we should keep the game of Musical Garbage Cans going and FOPat well FOPat says (0:18:45.97), “Actually Loren loves it…”  Of course “Loren” loves it, he can get into town and get out of town so he can pick up more garbage on the route and get home.  He does not have to pay the street maintenance fee!

*Councilwoman Melissa Kay – Interstate 29 Sign –  My advice to Councilwoman Kay, do your homework before you suggest another Bambee-like fiasco such as interstate signage.  For instance madam Kay, SDCL 31-29-1 through SDCL 31-29-87.  That is just the South Dakota, the Union County, local licensing fees.  Then there is the IOWADOT (Iowa Outdoor Advertising Regulations of Interstate Highways) and then there is the Linchpin Article, How to Effectively Use Outdoor and Billboard Advertising at https://linchpinseo.com/the-guide-to-outdoor-advertising/    updated 03/16/2021 author Team Linchpin.  Folks I took the advertising course in school.  Leisure Sports looked into Bill Board advertising when we became a Recreational Vehicle Dealer.  Want to know the potential costs, let’s see there is the annual state licensing permit ranging from $16 to $72 per sign based upon size, State zoning restrictions apply, County zoning restrictions apply, Cannot be in public right-of-way or over-hang it, the maximum area of one sign can be 1200 sq ft and cannot exceed thirty feet in height and 60 feet in length. private property contract for land rent for structure of the sign, and now the biggie. Traditional billboard require a monthly payment of $250.00 to $14,000.00 or more.  Digital billboards monthly payments start from $1200.00 to $15,000.00 or more.  Now folks FOPat is all hot-to-trot to replace the decrepit signs North of Alcester and South of Alcester.  There would be tear down fees, licensing fees from South Dakota and Union County along with any zoning changes along with any restriction as to content of the signage. (0:20:30.97)

Agenda Item #5 – Wastewater Facility with presentation by Banner Representative Ms. Tanya Miller.  (0:23:11.03)  Duties of the engineering, too bad the city did not have this in place during the SRTS fiasco which bought the city a tort suit.  (0:34:23.80)  Executive session #1 SDCL 1-25-2.3 Consulting with legal counsel or reviewing communications from legal counsel about proposed or pending litigation or contractual matters;  Length of session was 6:34 pm – 7:02 pm equaling a total time of 28 minutes.

Agenda Item #6 – Executive Session SDCL 1-25-2.3 Consulting with legal counsel or reviewing communications from legal counsel about proposed or pending litigation or contractual matters;  discussion and decision to settle the claims of Terry and Jessica Christensen under any terms and conditions recommended by outside counsel.  Length of session was 7:08 pm – 7:17 pm for a total discussion time of  eight (8) minutes.

Agenda Item #7 – Executive Session SDCL 1-25-2.1 Personnel Discussing the qualifications, competence, performance, character or fitness of any public officer or employee or prospective public officer or employee. The term, employee, does not include any independent contractor;Motion made by Councilwoman Melissa Kay.  The group entered Executive Session at 7:19 pm and was out of Executive session at 8:09 pm for a total time of 50 minutes.  Boy-howdy somebody was in deep do-do.

Agenda Item #8 – Library- Hired a part-time summer read person at $9.60 per hour.

Agenda Item #9 – Wheel Loader – bill $12,629.37  The Wheel Loader which was purchased used at a cost of $39,500.00 and as I remember to work on streets.  Ours wheel loader is a 2000 John Deere 544 (K) unknown hours with a speculative value somewhere around $15K to $30K in running condition.  So it appears the city just did $12,629.37 worth of repairs on a machine valued at or around $12K and that doesn’t include the hauling charge to and from Sioux City? (0:48:01.00) diagnosis:

*Leak in Boom Lift

*Replace O-rings

*Bad U joint

*Oil

*Rebuild Fuel Pump

*Full Service

*Alarms going off due to bad connector

*Issues with shifting

*Issues with Steering

(0:51:49.50) leave it up to the operators.  What operators?  Why would we leave a $12629.37 bill in the hands of operators?  Vote went to pay the $12,629.37 without question.

Agenda Item #10 – Health Plan change from Sanford to Wellmark with HSA option.  (0:54:42.90)  Pat’s health plan.  So Pat cannot handle direct deposit for the city employees but she is more than willing to take on the management of an HSA for the employees and the city?  Really it seems that FOPat is playing Robin Williams’  “Pinocchio, the Home Game” again.

Agenda Item #11 – Department Head reports –

Garbage pick-up moved to accommodate Park Street and Sixth Street rip up. (1:06:09.97)

Ordinances to be reviewed in the paper.

Agenda Item #12 – Reminders and Updates

Agenda Item #13 – Adjourn  8:35 pm

Karma

Contact City Council

Mayor Dan Haeder                   605-934-2287

Councilman David Larsen        605-934-2434

Councilwoman Melissa Kay     712-557-0689

Councilwoman Darla Reppe    605-934-2602

Councilwoman Linda Talbot    605-934-1849

Councilman Marcus Ireland     605-370-1193

04/07/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

Council you were warned.

Today has been a perfect example for erosion. Folks I have asked repeatedly in Public Input, when is the retaining wall going to happen, NO ANSWER. I commented about the failure of SunnySide Storage Units to put in the retaining wall on the variance side of their property which was a provision of the variance. Is it laziness on Mr. SunnySide or the procedural incompetence of our building permit issuer (Finance Officer). It appears our building permits are in a sorry state of compliance and oversight.

If the above building falls off the edge of the SunnySide cliff, someone is going to be sued. Will it be Mr. SunnySide for digging where he should not have, the failure of Mr. SunnySide to install the retaining wall, the Finance Officer who made a promise to Mr. SunnySide she could not fulfill and she did not have the authority to assure he had a slam duck building permit, the city council who approved the variance or will it be all three.

Folks, if this were your property, your building sitting on the edge of oblivion at the next rain, how much compensation would you ask for $50,000 each for the two separate properties affected by the failure of the city to follow through on their building permit?

https://dot.sd.gov/media/documents/ESControlSW.pdf

EROSION and SEDIMENT CONTROL and STORMWATER MANAGEMENT FY2020 – Special read Introduction pages 14-19, 29-31 and 43-50. Under #2.11 Property Rights, page #12; Sub#3.2, page #14; Sub 3.4,page #15; and Sub 3.18, page 19-20.

Contact:

Alcester City Offices

605-934-2851

alcestercityfo@alliancecom.net

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

SunnySide Storage Units

Attn: Robbie Huber

4000 S Bedford Av

Sioux Falls, SD 57103

04/05/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

“Don’t lie to me unless you’re absolutely sure that I will never find out the truth”

(ongoing criminality?)

Mayor Dan Haeder called the April 5, 2021, city council meeting to order with the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.  Council members present were Councilman David Larsen, Councilwoman Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, and City Attorney Sam Nelson with Councilwoman Melissa Kay with Councilman Marcus Ireland participating via telephone. 

Agenda Item #3 – Mayor Haeder called for Approval of the Agenda.

Mistake #1 – Agenda Item #6 should never had been on the list, given the identity of  the Ward III Candidate.

Agenda Item #4 – Approval of March 1, 2021, and March 15, 2021, council minutes.  Approve without change.

Agenda Item #5 – Public Input –  Vickie Larsen brought up the #1- need for a storm shelter replacement.  The city instituted a storm shelter at the auditorium and when they sold the building they had an obligation to find a suitable alternative in my opinion; #2 –  improperness of alderman interviews before the first May meeting (little did I know all the facts on that one) (0:04:32.42); #3 – the custom computer and Finance Officer Patricia Jurren’s contention the custom computer is an IBM clone.  All computers after IBM could be described as clones (0:04:55.60)   Below you find the product of my FOIA/Sunshine request of February 17, 2021, regarding the custom computer, take special note of the scrawled notations on the invoice page and the costs. Folks I did not received any answer to my questions during or after my input.

Agenda Item #4 – 4th graders driving golf carts in the cemetery; #5 – tracking water usage of the Alcester Fire Department and an apparent personal use of free (straight off the backs of the Alcester taxpayers); and Finally #6 – the failure of Sunnyside Storage to complete a retaining wall on the south edge of their property on Sixth street.

Agenda Item #6 – Executive Session – Interview pursuant of SDCL 1-25-2-1 Alderman Interview with a motion to approve Ward III Alderman, term until next election.  Who put this on the agenda FOPat or the real mayor.  I had already raised the question of the error in procedure.  At Councilwoman Melissa Kay’s instigation with the active participation of City Attorney Sam Nelson and council actively disenfranchised Ward III residents by terminating a valid appointed councilwoman fulfilling her oath of office. Councilwoman Melissa Kay, City Attorney and the council continued their deliberate participation of the Ward III disenfranchisement by failing to seat a replacement from October 5, 2021, to April 5, 2021.  Now after discussion among the council, the city attorney and Mayor Haeder and without naming the candidate, the group decided by consensus to delay any appointments to the Ward III seat to the May 3, 2021, meeting.  I wondered why the rush to seat a Ward III council person before the proper time.  There was a guy seated behind me and of whose identity I was blissfully unaware.  Mayor Haeder looked around me and ask if the person who was going to be interviewed could make the May 3 meeting and received an affirmative response from the guy behind me. Had the council continued under FOPat’s thumb-print pressure, this individual would have been seated and able to vote on futher ward openings. Guess What, I have since learned the identity of the guy, and wonder-of-wonder it is none other than Dale Jurrens.  ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  What part of CONFLICT of INTEREST do you not get?  So tell me, (and we are likely to surpass the Armstrong, Iowa, story here) if the Finance Officer is sleeping with her Alderman does that count as overtime or does that qualify as merit pay?  And is that for one or both of them.  How does the city insurance work, do they both get insurance paid?  Does FOPat give him orders or as Ward III council person does Councilman Dalie give her orders?  So if there is a spat between FOPat and Councilman ‘Dalie’, do we have to pay City Attorney Sam Nelson to arbitrate and who pays that bill? Just askin’.

Agenda Item #7 – Paint South Dakota – No volunteers project dropped.

Agenda Item #8 – Legal – Sam Nelson  Mr. Nelson dealt with the property nuisance issues, and brought up two legislative issues.  One pertinent to Alcester is HB 1084 dealing with covenants (0:14:07.07) (0:15:29.07)where the time has been extended to 40 years to protect homeowners from sh*thousers.  City Attorney Sam says this does not apply to the variances given by Pat to her buds Lance, Mike and etc.  I disagree. Keep in mind here that FOPat and then-Ward III councilman Lance Johnson went to seek the counsel of Mike McGill fellow Beresford Lawyer to none other than our Alcester City Attorney Sam Nelson and I do believe upon Mr. Nelson’s recommendation. Isn’t that nice? “…We are all on one team…” except when it comes to protecting our property values from being decimated by barns/garages, sh*t house steel mansions and infected alien attorneys.

Agenda Item #9 – Department Head Updates –

No Dept. head from Streets;

No Dept. head from Water/wastewater but had input from FOPat who stated water is a enterprise fund and the city it to make money off our water.  (01:29:15.97)  Return to my input on the water usage by the Fire Department.  Folks the city (the residents of Alcester) pay for the water from Southern Rural Water.  The city has allowed the fair to use water from the city at no cost, in fact they watered the fairgrounds to get the grass to grow a couple of years ago.  The city allows the Fire Department to use water without cost to fight fires, Okay.  But to fill personal swimming pools, not on your life.  So did Fire Chief Kast approve this?

No Dept. head from cemetery, Chief Jeff was present with his report, Councilman David Larsen gave report on the Golf Course and the library.  Committee Chairperson reports did not happen cause no committee chairs were prepared or present.

Agenda Item #10 – Post Hole Digger – Motion to purchase a post hole digger from Axel Ericson for $1200.00 with three (3) attachments.  We now have the ‘tools’ to dig post holes.

Agenda Item #11– Ordinance/Policy Clarifications – This involves interpretations of parking Chapter 7.05  (0:43:11.47) (0:43:24.23)  and (1:00:07.9)

Agenda Item #12 – Re-Evaluation 2021-03 Face Coverings – no action needed

Agenda Item #14 – Water Meter Installation discussion of fees. (1:29:15.97)

Agenda Item #15 – Gravely Mower (1:47:39.10) FO Pat took it upon herself to have the mower put into the discard bin for scrap value.  (1:48:11.07) the bin is gone according to report.  FO Pat made the decision to surplus the mower WITHOUT council approval.  So who is Mayor?  The city bookkeeper is not the mayor nor is she a member of the council.  Apparently FOPat does not think she needs council approval of disposal of city property.

Agenda Item #16 – Life Guard certification pay back.  Given what I am hearing about paychecks, I wish the lifeguards good luck in getting reimbursement from the finance officer in a timely manner.

Agenda Item #17 – Sirens tested and will have a statewide tornado drill on April 21.

Agenda Item #18 – Finance Office Updates

Evidently the city is no longer using a direct deposit service for the employees and as I understand it the mayor cannot seem to sign the payroll checks in a timely manner.

Agenda Item #19 – Community center Update.

Agenda Item #20 – Fair board Update.

Agenda Item #21 – Executive Session if needed, it was not.  Fancy that!

Agenda Item #22 – Adjourn  8:22 P.M.

KARMA

Contact City Council

Mayor Dan Haeder                   605-934-2287

Councilman David Larsen        605-934-2434

Councilwoman Melissa Kay     712-557-0689

Councilwoman Darla Reppe    605-934-2602

Councilwoman Linda Talbot    605-934-1849

Councilman Marcus Ireland     605-370-1193

03/15/2021 A Voice From the Gallery

“Without dreams, there can be no courage. And without courage, there can be no action.” 

Wim Wenders

Mayor Dan Haeder called the March 15, 2021, city council meeting to order with the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.  Councilmembers present were Councilman David Larsen, Councilwoman Darla Reppe, Councilwoman Linda Talbott, and Councilwoman Melissa Kay with Councilman Marcus Ireland via telephone.  No city attorney present.

Mayor Haeder called for Approval of the Agenda.

About five minutes into the meeting chiming started. A phone.

At 6:02 p.m. Mayor Haeder opened the Alcester Board of Equalization with just one appeal of valuation.  Karen Huenink was present to make appeal the valuation of the Huenink home.  The council meandered through the process of figuring out the percentage rise in value, the basis used to increase the value, and trying to answer the question, “…how did they know about updates/upgrades to raise the valuation?” (0:12:29.23) to which FOPat answered through building permits and routine valuation hikes.

Agenda Item #5 – Public Input  Bret Doering (0:29:39.20)was present to voice his appreciation and to personally thank our police department for their quick response to the break-in of his car-wash operation.

Councilwoman Darla Reppe (0:31:32.30)reported three issues.  John Wegh (0:31:43.47) local funeral home director contacted Councilwoman Reppe concerning street and alley approach failures to his business.  Councilwoman Reppe went on to report contact with the parents of lifeguards (0:34:28.17) employed by the city were concerned about WSI and lifeguard certification fees.  Most communities pay for the certifications, Alcester pays for one-half of the certification fee.  The fees are reported to be around $300.00.  The council considered the question, if the city wishes to retain lifeguards it would be in their best interests to pay the whole fee but in a contact situation where the lifeguard must work for a specific amount of time once they have certified at the expense of the city.  Councilwoman Reppe mentioned the continuation of an exposed pipe (0:41:23.90) in Lincoln Circle in which a street pipe was exposed and presented a safety issue.

Councilman David Larsen (0:42:55.83) asked a question regarding the garbage route which has presented some safety issues for our older residents who must schlep their garbage cans across the street to have the garbage truck pick up their garbage “to preserve the street”.  Evidently the garbage truck is not ambidextrous, its arm only swings one way.

Agenda Item #6 – Email Scam-  Emails were sent to some residents with Mayor Haeder listed as the sender.  He was not.  Emails requested help using the purchase of gift card.

Agenda Item #7 – Proper Police Department contact procedure. 

Agenda Item #8 – Proposed Street Maintenance – Mayor says be patient, it is not going to happen right away.  Folks prior to 2012 the street department would make their recommendation to the mayor, the street committee would also go out in the spring of the year to evaluate street conditions with those reports compared to previous years treatments and decisions would be made to take care those problem areas on a 3-4 year revolving plan.  Now it is not just the streets but the utility infrastructure under those street which needs attention.  My opinion the city needs to adopt a schedule and a plan of action with funding to repair our streets from west to east.

Agenda Item #9 – Library Board- the council voted to seat Cosette Heman for the three year term given up by Pam Hughes.

Agenda Item #10 – Paint South Dakota 2021- Still needs a chairperson and volunteer crews.  Deadline is April 15th, 2021 for implementation.  Will be placed on the April agenda.

Agenda Item #11 – Surplus chairs- Evidently Alcester EMS is in need of chairs, so the city elected to donate 20 chairs to the organization.

About 64 minutes into the meeting phone chiming continues on and off every minute or so. Again the chiming starts at about 68-69 minutes into the meeting. Yeah Wanda’s phone messaging her. Can we not find a solution to the chiming phone causing interruptions?

Agenda Item #12 – Personnel Policy Manual Changes.  Several observations here.  Human Resource Guru Councilwoman Kay and FOPat have been pushing the merit, longevity and of course the all-time favorite employee evaluation.  Motivation?  Well let’s see, when an employee starts at the top of the wage scale raises are limited to cost-of-living raises.  So after much, much discussion and conversation dealing with personal experiences and expectations from the mayor Resolution 2021-05 amendment to the Personnel Policy was moved to first reading.

Resolution 2021-06 amendment to the Personnel Policy was introduced with a cautionary warning from Councilwoman Darla Reppe who had done some research on the issue.  Councilwoman Reppe had been warned the city should steer clear of any policy change as outline in this resolution because it becomes a major problem. Vote was taken with four aye and one nay (Councilwoman Reppe)

Resolution 2021-07 Amendment to the Personnel Policy, was presented for first reading.  The Mayor asked, “What is the highest annual salary for an employee right now…” (1:29:56.77) FOPat answered, “… it is between the Chief and myself…” (1:30:14.57)  then Mayor Haeder asks, “…what number is that…” (1:30:22.33) and after a long, calculating pause Mayor Haeder paraphrased, “…we’ll call it $50K” (1:31:10.23) Resolution approved for first reading with amendment to percentages cut in half.

Agenda Item #13 – Legal – Settlement Cap for SRTS Lawsuit against City of Alcester, McLaury Engineering by Christensen.  Cap of $10K by city or rather city liability insurance(01:43:37.40) Mayor Haeder says, “…I don’t feel bad about them (Alcester liability insurance carrier) paying…” and like amount to be matched by co-respondent McLaury Engineering.  Vote approved the cap settlement amount with the attorneys to be advised of the vote.

Agenda Item #14 – Reminders and Updates

Agenda Item #15 – Executive Session needed by Councilwoman Melissa Kay 1-25-2.1 Personnel.  Councilwoman Kay instructed Wanda Halverson to stay in the session.  Into Executive Session at 7:49 P.M. and out of Executive Session at 7:55 P.M.

Agenda Item #16 – Adjourn  City Council Adjourned at 7:56 P.M.

Contact City Council

Mayor Dan Haeder                   605-934-2287

Councilman David Larsen        605-934-2434

Councilwoman Melissa Kay     712-557-0689

Councilwoman Darla Reppe    605-934-2602

Councilwoman Linda Talbot    605-934-1849

Councilman Marcus Ireland    605-370-1193