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Continuing discussions on a property variance and nuisance abatements topped the discussion at the Monday, November 21 Mount Ayr city council meeting.
Brenda Grose appeared before the council to ask that they appeal the variance on a property at 204 Dunning Avenue.
Grose lives directly across the street from the property in question.
After the modular structure was set into place, it was discovered the structure was positioned too close to the street as established by city code.
After considerable discussion, the city’s Zoning Committee had granted the variance to the city ordinance to allow the structure to remain in place.
In presenting her written and oral arguments, Grose offered a list of reasons she believed the variance should not have been granted:
• The price to relocate the structure had been significantly over-estimated based upon her conversations with two modular home contractors.
• The contractor who set the structure has “on more than one occasion admitted he was aware of the permit boundaries and did in fact set the modular home outside the parameters of that permit… it would appear the responsibility for correcting the error would be with [his] company.”
• The structure as it sits threatens to reduce the property values in other properties in the Shellway Drive/Dunning Avenue neighborhood.
• “The city has made homeowners move signs in their yards that did not meet parameter guidelines, issues building permits for a reason and set those building permit regulations not as guidelines but as ordinances to be followed.”
Mayor Steve Fetty stated the council would need to consult with its attorney before deciding upon any potential appeal to the variance.
The council voted to follow through with the nuisance abatement civil citation on a property located at 700 E. Jackson Street, owned by the Zollman brothers of Mount Ayr.
If the owners plead guilty to the civil citation, they will have until December 1 to bring the property into compliance with city nuisance ordinances.
After that date, the city may take steps to alleviate the nuisance.
The citation carries with it a $500 civil penalty.
The council set language regarding a referendum to extend the Local Option Sales Tax beyond its sunset date July 1, 2027.
The language stipulates that 50 percent of the revenue after that date with be devoted to the design and construction of an aquatic center with the other 50 percent of the revenue reserved for “any other lawful purpose” as stated in Iowa code.
When approved at the December 5 council meeting, the ballot measure will appear during a special referendum set for March 7, 2023..
Jack McConnell and Mike Warin, members of the city’s Airport Board, presented bids for the purchase and installation of new doors on hangars at the municipal airport.
The accepted bid for five manually operated bi-fold doors came in at $34,253.99, a figure that Warin stated was less than half the cost of similar electrically operated doors.
The accepted bid came from FoldTite Systems, Inc. from New York.
A grant will fund the majority of the purchase cost.
A separate grant has been secured to update lighting at the airport at a future date.
In other business the council:
• approved a tax abatement for a garage owned by John and Amy Ford at 106 S. Webster Street.
• approved a Class C liquor license renewal for the Gold Mine Saloon;
• tabled discussion on the purchase of a new garbage truck.
• approved the first pay request of $125,029.50 from TK Concrete for work on Valley West Drive.