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The Mount Ayr city council had a relatively light agenda Monday evening, the main order of business being approving the first reading of Ordinance No. 39, which amends certain provisions of the water service system.
Some of the changes to the code would include:
• Anyone found violating the code shall, upon conviction, be subject to a fine of at least $65, but not to exceed $625.
• When an existing water service is abandoned, connections with the mains shall be turned off and made watertight.
• Before any person makes or abandons a connection with the mains, a written permit must be obtained from the city. The cost of the permit will be $50 and there shall be a connection fee of $500.
• Mandates the type of water service pipes which may be used to make a connection and where water shutoff valves are located.
• Stipulates that only a person authorized by the city may turn water on at the curb valve or open, or attempt to draw water from any fire hydrant.
• Outlines the stipulations for “Water Deduct Meters” and “Agricultural Meters” where water used doesn’t require sanitary sewer usage.
• Sets new water usage fees. The monthly cost of the first 2,000 gallons (minimum) will be $22.81, $1.53 per 100 gallons for all water usage over 2,000 gallons, a meter fee of $1 and a capital improvement fee of $10. The new rates will be effective on July 1 and increase 2 percent annually through 2025.
Rates for water service outside the city limits will be $37.13 for the first 2,000 gallons, $2.70 per 100 gallons over 2,000 and include the same meter and capital improvement fees.
• If a landlord seeks an exemption for the charges related to water service for their renters, the landlord would need to supply the name of the tenant, the address and the date of occupancy. The landlord shall pay a deposit not exceeding the usual cost of 90 days of services which will be refunded when the tenant moves from the property and all charges and costs are paid in full.
• Sets non-refundable account set up fee of $100 and $50 for moving service to a new address.
The ordinance will need to pass two more readings to become law.
Storm water projects
City superintendent Brent Wise told the council that progress on storm water projects is “In a kind of a bad spot,” due to all the rain the area has been receiving this spring. He said heavy rains have caused some significant sink holes in certain parts of the city.
The council also received a list of streets which need asphalt and the approximate costs for each of those projects. The projects total over $372,000 but the city only has $64,000 remaining in that budget for this year. The council will review the list and address the matter after that.
Two residents addressed the council during the public forum portion of the meeting.
Denise Golliday of 403 North Hayes Street asked the council to consider making the intersection of North Hayes and East Columbus a 4 way stop. Currently there is two stop signs, both for traffic on East Columbus.
“There are a lot of kids playing in that neighborhood and cars roll through that intersection and don’t stop” said Golliday.
The council decided to put the matter on the agenda for their next meeting.
Jerry McGill, Secretary/Treasurer of the Mount Ayr Fire Department, asked the council to approve a payment of $15,000 to purchase property directly south of the current fire department building. The property is currently owned by the Gaylan Combs Life Estate.
The council told McGill to go ahead and draft a purchase agreement with the property owner stipulating the agreement can be executed only if the council approves it at their next council meeting.