Posted: February 17, 2023 | Updated: August 24, 2023
NOTICE AND CALL OF PUBLIC MEETING
GOVERNMENTAL BODY: THE CITY COUNCIL OF CRESCO, IOWA
DATE OF MEETING: FEBRUARY 20, 2023
TIME AND PLACE OF MEETING: 5:30 P.M. CITY HALL, 130 N PARK PLACE
PUBLIC NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN THAT THE ABOVE MENTIONED
GOVERNMENTAL BODY WILL MEET AT THE DATE, TIME AND PLACE SET OUT ABOVE. THE TENTATIVE AGENDA FOR SAID MEETING IS AS FOLLOWS:
ROLL CALL: KRIENER, McCONNELL, FORTUNE, BOUSKA, CARMAN
ACT ON THE CONSENT AGENDA: All items listed under the consent agenda will be enacted by one motion. There will be no separate discussion of these items unless a request is made prior to the time council votes on the motion.
- Approval of the Agenda
- Approval of the Claims
- Approval of Minutes from February 6, 2023
- Approval of Class E Retail Alcohol License (LE) to Wemark22, LLC d/b/a The Ox & Wren Spirits and Gifts
STAFF REPORTS: There may be action taken on each of the items listed below.
- Public Works
- Committee Updates
COMMENTS FROM AUDIENCE: (This portion of the agenda is for comments that are not related to one of the items listed on the agenda. Comments can only be received. No formal action by the Council can be taken. Those making public comments will be asked to state their name and address, and to speak from the podium.)
BUSINESS: There may be action taken on each of the items listed below.
- Public Hearing on the Authorization of a Loan Agreement and the Issuance of Not to Exceed $4,600,000 General Obligation Capital Loan Notes (for Essential Corporate Purposes) to Evidence the Obligation of the City Thereunder
- Resolution Instituting Proceedings to take Additional Action for the Issuance of Not to Exceed $4,600,000 General Obligation Capital Loan Notes
- Resolution Authorizing the Issuance of General Obligation Capital Loan Notes, Series 2023, and Levying a Tax for the Payment Thereof
- Resolution Authorizing Mayor to Enter into Financial Services Agreement with Piper Sandler & Co.
- Resolution Authorizing Mayor to Enter into an Agreement to Serve as Dissemination Agent for Secondary Market Disclosures with Piper Sandler & Co.
- Review Stump Grinding Quotes and Possible Award of Contract
- Resolution Authorizing the Mayor and City Council Representatives to Sign an Agreement in Accordance with the Terms Agreed to in Negotiations Between the City of Cresco and Local 1068 American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees AFL-CIO
- Resolution Approving Wage Agreement for Full-Time Nonunion Employees
- Resolution Approving Wage Increase for Specified Permanent Part-Time Employees
- Third Reading of Summary of Proposed Ordinance 502 which Amends Chapter 106 Sections 106.04 and 106.08 of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Cresco, Iowa, Pertaining to Fees for Recyclable and Non-Recyclable Waste
- Approval of Ordinance 502 Pertaining to Fees for Recyclable and Non-Recyclable Waste
- Recommendation of the Board of Adjustments to Reappoint Emily Dohlman-Govern for a Term of Three Years Expiring 6/30/2025
- Recommendation of the Board of Adjustments to Reappoint Kevin Weinacht for a Term of Three Years Expiring 6/30/2025
- Discuss Potential Legislative Changes to the Property Tax System and Local Option Sales Tax
- Discuss Upcoming Expiration of Urban Renewal Areas for TIF
- Resolution Authorizing the Mayor to Sign a Letter of Intent to Participate in an Application with the Iowa Economic Development Authority for a Theater – Community Catalyst Building Remediation Program Grant for the Cresco Theatre and Opera House
- Resolution Authorizing Martin Gardner Architecture to Proceed with Phase II of the Scene Shop Construction Project
- Discuss STBG Funding and Swap Funding Opportunities and Possible Motion to Apply for a Grant
THIS NOTICE IS GIVEN AT THE DIRECTION OF THE MAYOR PURSUANT TO CHAPTER 21, CODE OF IOWA AND THE LOCAL RULES OF SAID GOVERNMENTAL BODY. POSTED FEBRUARY 17, 2023.
Mayor Brenno called the Cresco City Council meeting to order on February 20, 2023, at 5:30 pm. Council Members Kriener, Fortune, and Bouska were present. Council Members McConnell and Carman were absent.
Bouska made the motion to approve the consent agenda which included approval of the: agenda; claims; minutes from February 6, 2023; Class E Retail Alcohol License to Wemark22, LLC d/b/a The Ox & Wren Spirits and Gifts. Kriener seconded and it passed all ayes.
Public Works Director Widell reported: (a) watermain break was fixed on Thursday; (b) the stoplight pole will hopefully be in this week; (c) Street Department has been busy cleaning and televising storm sewers and identifying spots that will need immediate attention; (d) Sleepy Hollow has a new 2022 truck that meets the specs of the one that is budgeted to be purchased in July. It is about $10,000 cheaper than a 2023 model and it would not have to be ordered. Amy questioned the passenger room and gas mileage. The crew cab has more room and it would get better gas mileage than the Traverse we have. Council agreed to have it included in the budget amendment and to purchase it prior to July due to the cost savings.
Police Chief Ruroden had nothing to report for the police department.
Deputy Clerk Hill reported (a) informational meetings for 7th Street West Reconstruction and Downtown Crosswalk projects will be February 22nd at 5:00 pm and 6:00 pm respectively at Cresco Bank & Trust. These may be rescheduled to March 2nd due to the winter storm; (c) bids are due on February 27th for the water tower project. Council will review bids and award the contract at the March 6, 2023 Council meeting.
Bouska attended the HCED meeting and reported Cabin Coffee will be building west of Howard County Mutual, Panda Garden is now open, and Good Times Grill is hoping to open in May.
Deputy Clerk Hill reported the Library hired Kim Witt as the Children’s Librarian; income tax preparation help is currently available; Howard County Supervisors will tour the Library in April; Patsy Bronner will be writing an article for the paper about who the Library Foundation is and what their function is. They plan on being more of a community presence and have a brochure that they will be giving to attorneys for estate planning.
Fortune reported Theatre Commission met and the Oneota Film Festival was a great success. Gosch LLC is installing the new furnaces. They are working with the UNI outreach program for new shows. Several live events are scheduled for April and May.
Mayor Brenno asked for comments from the audience and there were none.
Mayor Brenno opened the Public Hearing on the authorization of a loan agreement and the issuance of not to exceed $4,600,000 General Obligation Capital Loan Notes (for essential corporate purposes). No oral or written objections were received and the public hearing was closed.
Bouska made the motion to approve a resolution instituting proceedings to take additional action for the issuance of not to exceed $4,600,000 General Obligation Capital Loan Notes. Kriener seconded and it passed all ayes.
Bouska made the motion to approve a resolution authorizing the issuance of General Obligation Capital Loan Notes Series 2023, and levying a tax for the payment thereof. Kriener seconded and it passed all ayes.
Kriener made the motion to approve a resolution authorizing the Mayor to enter into a Financial Services Agreement with Piper Sandler & Co. Bouska seconded and it passed all ayes.
Kriener made the motion to approve a resolution authorizing the Mayor to enter into an agreement to serve as Dissemination Agent for secondary market disclosures with Piper Sandler & Co. Bouska seconded and it passed all ayes.
Widell reported two quotes for stump grinding were received: Wilson Custom Tree Service $.87 per inch; Walton Tree Service $.89 per inch. Kriener emphasized that stump grinding needs to go deep enough to grind the roots and to make sure they are not just skimmed off. Bouska made a motion to award the contract to Wilson Custom Tree Service. Kriener seconded and it passed all ayes.
Bouska made the motion to approve a resolution authorizing the Mayor and City Council representatives to sign an agreement in accordance with the terms agreed to in negotiations between the City of Cresco and Local 1068 American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees AFL-CIO. Kriener seconded and it passed all ayes
Kriener made the motion to approve the resolution approving wage increases for full-time, nonunion employees. Bouska seconded and it passed all ayes.
Bouska made the motion to approve the resolution approving wage increases for specified permanent part-time employees. Kriener seconded and it passed all ayes.
Mayor Brenno performed the third reading of proposed Ordinance No. 502 pertaining to fees for recyclable and non-recyclable waste collection. Bouska made the motion to approve the third reading of proposed Ordinance No. 502. Kriener seconded and it passed all ayes.
Bouska made the motion to approve Ordinance No. 502 by amending Chapter 106 sections 106.04 and 106.08 subsection 1 of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Cresco, Iowa, pertaining to fees for recyclable and non-recyclable waste collection. Kriener seconded and it passed all ayes.
Kriener made the motion to approve the recommendation of the Board of Adjustments to reappoint Emily Dohlman-Govern for a term of three years expiring 6/30/2025. Bouska seconded and it passed all ayes.
Kriener made the motion to approve the recommendation of the Board of Adjustments to reappoint Kevin Weinacht for a term of three years expiring 6/30/2025. Bouska seconded and it passed all ayes.
City Clerk Elton reported that several potential legislative changes to the property tax system and Local Option Sales Tax are being considered by the State. (1) SF 181 has passed and will be implemented immediately. The rollback on residential property is being lowered by 1.8% which will lower the taxable valuations and property tax revenues for the FY24 budget. We will be adjusting the proposed budget after the valuations are updated by Howard County. The budgets will be due April 30th this year due to the late change. (2) SSB 1124 will combine several levies into the General Fund Levy and also limits valuation growth. (3) SSB 1125 is in the discussion stage. This would eliminate local governments from collecting the Local Option Sales Tax (LOST), reduce commercial & industrial property tax rollback from 90% to 80% with no backfill, and convert the funding of the Homestead Tax Credit and Veterans Property Tax Credit to be funded by local governments instead of the State. All three of these items will have drastic impacts to the City. LOST funds all of our equipment and small projects as well as emergency expenses. The State claims they will backfill LOST; however, based on past experience this occurs for a few years then is eliminated. (4) SSB 1138 will increase the Military Property Tax Credit to apply to the first $4,000 valuation from $1,852. All of these bills will have a negative impact to city budgets and revenue. Bouska pointed out that if revenues are reduced that cities will need to consider cutting services for police, law enforcement centers, fire, theatre, parks, fitness centers, library and administration due to these changes. Cresco allocates 60% of its General Fund levy to the police and law enforcement and another 13% supports the Library. Now is the time for citizens to reach out to your senators and representatives.
City Clerk Elton explained that most of the Urban Renewal Areas are expiring in the next few years. Areas created prior to 1994 did not have expiration dates which included the downtown and the industrial park. However, an amendment was done to combine all of the areas so there was an inadvertent expiration date created. If the UR Areas are allowed to expire, the frozen base and available incremental values would be lost for future TIF projects. Council recommended requesting a cost estimate and procedures from Ahlers & Cooney to update the Urban Renewal Areas.
Kriener made the motion to approve the resolution authorizing the Mayor to sign a Letter of Intent to support an application with the Iowa Economic Development Authority for a Theater – Community Catalyst Building Remediation Program Grant for the Cresco Theatre and Opera House. Fortune seconded and it passed all ayes.
Bouska made the motion to approve a resolution authorizing Martin Gardner Architecture to proceed with phase II of the Scene Shop Construction Project. Fortune seconded and it passed all ayes.
Council discussed STBG funding and swap funding opportunities for the Downtown Crosswalk Project. The annual Federal funding is granted to a region comprised of five counties including Howard County. A committee of five County Supervisors and two Mayors from Decorah and Oelwein review applications and award grants. If Cresco was awarded a grant, it would reduce Howard County’s allocation in the future. Cresco is only eligible for Farm-to-Market street projects or pedestrian projects. The deadline to apply for the grant is February 28, 2023 with the award announced sometime this spring. Jason Passmore suggested to apply for $250,000 to help the downtown businesses with their assessments. If the City were to receive the grant, the project would be delayed for at least one year. WHKS estimates the bids from the contractors would be approximately 10% higher due to it being a federal project. There would also be additional engineering and higher costs due to inflation for delaying the project one year. This could also impact the contractors that would choose to bid on the project. There is a possibility that if the project is delayed, the whole process would start over and the assessments could be even higher than originally projected. Because the date for grant awards is unknown, the project may still need to be delayed a year due to the later date of going out for bids. Bouska made a motion to apply for $300,000 with the funds going to the City’s cost of the project and only accept it if the project would be completed summer 2024. The minimum to accept would be $250,000. The motion failed for lack of a second motion. Kriener made a motion to not apply for the grant and to continue the project as originally planned due to timing and potential increase in cost. Fortune seconded. Fortune and Kriener voted aye. Bouska voted nay. The motion passed by majority vote.
Bouska moved to adjourn at 6:46 pm. Fortune seconded and it passed all ayes. The next regular Cresco City Council meeting will be March 6, 2023, at 5:30 pm at Cresco City Hall.
Mayor: David J. Brenno
City Clerk: Michelle Elton