City Council met in regular session on March 1, 2021 at 6:00 P.M. in the Council Chambers of City Hall.
Mayor Lester presided:
City employees present were Chief Newman, City Administrator Kennedy, Public Works Director Mager and Attorney Green.
MINUTES: The meeting was called to order and the Council minutes of February 16th were approved as presented by Councilor Peterson, second by Councilor Farris. Motion carried by a unanimous vote of the Council present.
DOGS IN CITY PARKS: City Administrator Kennedy created an online doodle poll in order to solicit public input on whether dogs should be allowed in all city parks. The City received a fair amount of public response and the majority felt the ordinance should be left in place so it could be enforced when needed. Various councilors also received input from citizens. It was decided to leave the ordinance in effect and to provide education to the public that dogs are only allowed at the designated dog park on the east side of Lions Park. City hall will put out facebook blasts, get something in the paper and work with park users such as youth baseball, art in the park, soccer and border days to help get the word out.
SANCTUARY CITIES: Mayor Lester explained no one has asked him about designating Grangeville a sanctuary city; however there has been discussion around the state, including Kamiah. Attorney Green reviewed the resolution Kamiah recently adopted that was similar to one used by another Idaho city. Skip Brandt also had an article in the paper on the topic. Green agreed with Mr. Brandt. He didn’t believe the resolution would address anything that isn’t already in state law. He felt adopting the resolution is more a political expression then having a legal effect.
LAND PURCHASE PRAIRIE TREE FARMS: Mayor Lester stated the property is on the mountain and contains 10 acres. The property includes 6 towers with leases. The right of first refusal was sent to current lessee and their time expired. This property does not include the towers already on City property. The purchase price is $340,000. There is yearly income from leases. The purchase will be made from the timber fund with the rent reimbursing the timber fund over time until paid back. Then future rental income would be used for the general fund. This would provide a little annual income for the general fund in the future.
On motion by Councilor Winkler, second by Councilor Canaday to authorize the purchase of 10 acres of land from Prairie Tree Farms Limited Partnership for $340,000 plus closing costs. ROLL CALL VOTE: YES: Canaday, Farris, Winkler, Lane, Grant, Peterson. NO: none. The motion passed.
RECORDS DESTRUCTION RESOLUTION:
RESOLUTION NO. 277
(Resolution No. 277 in its entirety on file in the City’s Resolution File)
The following resolution was introduced by Councilor Peterson who moved for its adoption. Second by Councilor Winkler.
A RESOLUTION OF THE MAYOR AND COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF GRANGEVILLE, IDAHO COUNTY AUTHORIZING DESTRUCTION OF RECORDS.
ROLL CALL VOTE: YES: Canaday, Farris, Winkler, Lane, Grant, Peterson. NO: none. The motion passed. Mayor Lester then declared Resolution No. 277 duly approved and adopted.
POLICY TO WAIVE ERS OVER 1 ON EQUITY BUY IN FEES TO PROMOTE GROWTH:
RESOLUTION NO. 278
(Resolution No. 278 in its entirety on file in the City’s Resolution File)
The following resolution was introduced by Councilor Peterson who moved for its adoption. Second by Councilor Canaday.
A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY OF GRANGEVILLE, IDAHO COUNTY, IDAHO DECLARING SUPPORT FOR AND ENCOURAGING GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT IN THE CITY OF GRANGEVILLE; FORMALLY WAIVING EQUITY BUY IN FEES FOR WATER AND SEWER ABOVE ONE EQUIVALENT RESIDENCE (ER) AND PROVIDING AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
ROLL CALL VOTE: YES: Canaday, Farris, Winkler, Lane, Grant, Peterson. NO: none. The motion passed. Mayor Lester then declared Resolution No. 278 duly approved and adopted.
DEANNEXATION REQUEST: Raj Chahal submitted a request to de-annex approximately 44 acres of property on the southwest side of town. The property is a combination of commercial and residential and known as Tax #842 and 843 less 971 and 972. City Administrator Kennedy explained the property has triggered the subdivision process and none of the property can be sold until the plat is approved. The City does not have a current subdivision proposal. If the City decides to move forward with the de-annexation process, a public hearing before the Council would be scheduled.
Councilor Grant felt it was important for those property owners close by Raj’s property to have the ability to voice any concerns they may have.
Public Works Director Mager stated Raj bought the property and then sold off a portion of it but the subdivision process had been triggered. Mager and Kennedy have met with Raj several times over the years, but nothing has moved forward on a proposed subdivision. There is a lot of infrastructure that would need to happen.
Councilor Peterson questioned if it would go anywhere in the county. Mager stated the County has different regulations and is different than the City. The City is infrastructure based.
Mager stated if they de-annex then they could drill wells and have drain fields. Mager also explained expansion of the city is very limited. The best route for the City would be to expand from zip trip to the north and there is limited growth to the east. Mager stated if the property could be sold, there is a possibility of a true developer coming in with a dream that could build a subdivision. Kennedy stated AIC always recommends not to de-annex.
The Council has a few different options. They could consider de-annexation as a whole or with limits. They could have Raj go through the variance process to see if the Council would allow a variance to selling the property as one piece. Attorney Green explained the Council can’t promise a variance because it goes through P&Z and then to council. Raj asked for de-annexation so the council could go through that process or the Council could try to get an agreement with Raj to go through the variance process to sell the piece as a whole.
Councilor Canaday felt the Council should move forward with a public hearing and hear testimony on de-annexation while Councilors Peterson and Winkler liked the variance idea. After additional discussion, the council chose to have Kennedy moved forward with a hearing for de-annexation.
MINIMUM UTILITY BILL RELATING TO ERS: Kennedy asked for clarification on the minimum bill being charged on utility accounts when the water is off. A lot of accounts have a minimum sewer of 1ER so are unaffected with the base bill when the water is off. Some accounts have a calculated ER which makes their sewer more than the minimum sewer of $47.44. Kennedy asked if the Council’s intent was to have customers pay a minimum sewer equal to 1 ER, rather than the calculated ER. The council agreed. Kennedy will have a revision prepared for the next meeting for the Council to consider.
ITEMS TO NOTE:
The meeting adjourned at 6:59 P.M.
Wes Lester – Mayor
Tonya Kennedy – Clerk