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The recycling service in Mount Ayr next month following action by the city council Monday night.
In a 3-1 vote, the council voted to discontinue the service due in large part to an increase in collection fees charged by Midwest Sanitation, the contractor responsible for accepting the city’s recycled materials.
Councilmen Jordan Stewart, Brent Ricker, and Mack Greene voted to discontinue the service while councilman Brad Elliott voted to continue recycling. Councilman Ken Robertson was absent from Monday’s meeting.
Midwest Sanitation recently informed the city they would increase their fee by nearly $10,000 effective November 1.
To this point the city had been spending approximately $28,000 per year, including fees from Midwest Sanitation, labor, and operational costs for the collection truck, to offer recycling to city residents.
The rate increase would move that total to nearly $38,000.
In addition, the city was faced with another $5,000 to replace broken residential garbage collection bins that had been in service in the seven years the city has offered garbage service. Without the recycling, the current recycling bins can be refitted as garbage bins, thus eliminating the need for new bins.
During the discussion, city administrator Brent Wise informed the council of a fund at the Wayne-Ringgold-Decatur landfill that was set aside for environmental purposes. He said, however, he did not know if any of those funds could be used to offset costs associated with recycling services.
After the final vote, the council agreed to continue recycling collection on November 19 and December 3 before eliminating the service.
Wise shared a sample proposal for repaying a loan if the council decides to move forward with the purchase of four new pieces of city equipment.
The proposal would repay approximately $307,000 for a new wheel loader, new mini-excavator, new dump truck, and new 1-ton truck.
The proposed loan carries a 1.75 percent interest rate over five years with an annual payment of approximately $64,700 per year. The first payment would be due December 15, 2021, allowing the expenditure to be budgeted for in next year’s city budget.
The council will consider action on the proposal at its December 7 meeting.
Representing the Mount Ayr Public Library board, board vice-chair Darrell Dodge met with the council to discuss the city’s annual allocation to the library.
Dodge explained that over recent years the board had been utilizing funds from donations and memorials to pay for major improvements to the library, which is a city-owned structure.
Those improvements have included installation of new energy-efficient windows, tuck pointing and sealing the brick exterior, new steps, handicapped accessible ramp and chair lift, and other improvements.
He added such expenditures takes funds away from adding new books and materials and offering other programming.
Dodge said the board is now faced with the expense of repairing or replacing the 100-year-old roof, which has already begun to leak, damaging the west wall and $1,000 worth of books.
Along with its assistance to pay for the roof repairs. Dodge asked the council to increase the city’s annual allocation from its current $17,000, an amount that has remained level for over 10 years, to $22,000.
The increase, Dodge said, would allow the continued maintenance of the library without dipping further into memorial funds.
In other business the council:
• agreed to consider a new policy for situations where property owners receive exorbitantly high water bills due to undetected water leaks. The council will take up the matter at the December 7 meeting.
• approved the second readings and waived the third readings for amended city ordinances dealing with vicious animals as well as the internal structure of city government.
• approved a renewal of a liquor license for the Gold Mine Saloon.