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The Mount Ayr city council covered a light agenda at its special work session Monday, October 31.
With one position currently vacant on the city crew, city superintendent Brent Wise asked the council if they would consider replacing that position by creating a new job description of Code Enforcement Officer or Assistant City Administrator. This position would be responsible for covering nuisance abatements, zoning issues, building permits and rental property inspections.
After brainstorming options for such a position, the council gave its go-ahead to further research job descriptions and responsibilities for similar positions in other communities.
Wise also mentioned the city could benefit from hiring a part-time grant writer. He explained the record-keeping and documentation required as follow-up to most grants is difficult for the city staff if they were not involved in the original development of the grant application.
Water, sewer fees
The council reviewed a list of nearly 150 property parcels within the city limits that include vacant lots, vacant homes, lots with buildings other than homes, and occupied homes with values generally below $30,000, the majority of which are rental properties.
The city is exploring options as it considers revision of its ordinance related to water and sewer fees.
Because clarifications were needed in calculations and wording in a proposed revision of the city’s garbage utility rates, the council will hold the first hearing on the newly revised ordinance at its first regular meeting on Monday, November 7.
Changes include a three percent annual fee increase through 2028 as well as specifying rates for commercial customers outside the city limits.
In other business the council:
• learned repair of plumbing at the Judge Lewis swimming pool will begin this week, but repair to concrete surrounding the pool will take place in the spring.
• learned a letter has been sent to local businesses and governmental agencies reminding them their properties must meet city nuisance ordinances the same as any residential property.
The letter stated inspections of business/government properties will begin in January 2023.
The letter included the wording of two ordinances related to nuisances.
Owners of such properties are invited to discuss potential nuisance violations with city administration.