Beloit City Council – May 16, 2017

The Beloit City Council met on Tuesday evening at the Municipal Building in Beloit. City Manager Jason Rabe discussed the ongoing correspondence with the EPA and KDHE in regard to improving water quality in the City of Beloit.
Later in the meeting, Rabe asked the council to approve a letter drafted to submit to the EPA in response to an Administrative Order of Consent which commits the city to correcting its water issues. Whether that be a simple treatment process change or a significant change to the water plant.
City Attorney Katie Schroeder summarized the document by saying TTHM byproducts in the city’s water supply have often been out of compliance, but they are continually being addressed. She requested that the work they have done to fix the issues to this point be documented in the agreement with the EPA. She also requested it be stated in the language of the document that delays on the part of the KDHE are holding up the process at this point. The agreement outlines steps and deadlines the city needs to follow and meet in-order to correct the issues. A sampling plan will be developed as a tracking mechanism to measure the success of corrective actions.
Rabe also discussed the approach to the runway at Moritz which was constructed improperly. He hopes that correcting the issue will be simple. He has been advised that the City of Beloit is not liable for the error.
Work on Court Street between Mill and Hersey is continuing, and the street is nearly ready to pour. Rabe said he feels like most of the project can be finished in the next couple of weeks if the weather holds out. Rabe also shared his intentions to submit a rough draft of a Capital Improvement Plan for the city.
Joel and John Fouts of Fouts Insurance in Beloit appeared to present a dividend check in the amount of $42,868 from EMC Insurance. The five-year average for dividends paid to the city by EMC is about $30,000. Joel Fouts discussed services offered such as an attorney direct program which allows the city 90 minutes with EMC attorneys for consultation each quarter. Loss control services, safety inspections, training and more are also available.
Solomon Valley Economic Development Director Heather Hartman reported that they are pursuing Community Development Block Grants again this cycle. There will be a housing grant informational meeting on June 1 at 7 p.m. at the Municipal Building in Beloit. During the last round of projects there were 14 demolitions and 14 rehabilitations completed.
Hartman also said the countywide cleanup still has plenty of funds available. Only about half of the $20,000 has been utilized as of Tuesday. Hartman said they may extend it past this week or look for a specific project(s) in the county to use up the available funding.
She also said the Fresh Impressions Program participants will meet for training this week. Beloit is partnering with Clay Center for the program where mystery “shoppers” from each city will visit the partnering city to give their impressions of the city in terms of shopping and amenities such as parks, infrastructure and more.
Hartman also discussed upcoming Career Exploration and Leadership Weeks over the summer. June 12-13 will be Science Exploration, June 19-21 is Health Care and Law Enforcement Week and June 26-28 will be Ag and Entrepreneurship Week. Cost of the program is $10 per week or $25 for all three. The program is for 7th through 9th graders.
It promises to take a fun and exciting look at many different careers within our community. There will be guest speakers, field trips and many hands-on activities. Kids will be able to interact with local professionals and see their careers in action. The program is been a joint effort of USD 273, NCK Tech, NCRPC and Mitchell County Community Development. For more information of to sign up, contact Cris Adams at 738-8387 or Heather Hartman at 738-3000.
Chief of Police Dave Elam relayed that two new officers have been certified and are completing local field training in Beloit. Officers Matthew Seemann and Casey Henk were hired in December and recently graduated from the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Center.
The council then approved the consent agenda including the minutes of the May 2 meeting and accounts payable for the period in the amount of $274,948.
Mr. Rabe presented three options for a North Campus lot pricing structure for the council’s consideration. The first was a basic pricing structure which comes out to about 74 cents per square foot. Option two was based on the average pricing on lots already sold, and Option 3 Included a 25% margin.
The council approved option two. A billboard and brochures will be produced reflecting the chosen pricing method and proceeds from the sale of the lots will be dedicated to covering the general obligation bond used to construct the North Campus streets.
In the work session, the council discussed the Little Red Schoolhouse at the roadside park on Highway 24. The Mitchell County Historical Society wants to remove certain artifacts from the site, but they are not interested in obtaining the existing structure. The council seemed to agree that putting money into it is not a viable option. They discussed possibly replacing it with bathrooms, but that would entail costs likely in the neighborhood of $50,000. The consensus of the council was that there are other public bathroom projects that should be more of a priority such as the Westside Park restrooms and those owned by the city at the ballfields.
There were questions as to how important the schoolhouse was to the community and if those who expressed interest in it would be willing to commit financially to preserving the structure. Those with such interest should contact the city office in Beloit.
Rabe also discussed a possible animal holding facility located at the water plant to house animals picked up by code enforcement or police. A myriad of questions were spurred by the suggestion, but no decisions were made with any certainty of moving forward with such a project. The city currently uses Solomon Valley Vet to house captured animals and often have issues recovering the costs they incur from the animal owners.
The Beloit City Council is next scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 6 at the Municipal Building in Beloit.

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Now in his third year as News Director at KD-Country 94 and Z-96.3 The Lake, Chad is a jack of not all, but many trades. He spent previous years of his working life in hotel management, event planning, security, the aviation industry, staff writing for a newspaper, and as a small business owner. He began doing play-by-play of high school sports for KDNS and KZDY in 2009 and came to work full time for the stations in July of 2015. He is the father of an eight year old daughter who enjoys spending his free time with her, his very significant other and her children. His favorite activities include attending live music and sporting events as well as being a singer/songwriter. A natural conversationalist, he also enjoys a good discussion/debate on a myriad of topics from current events and politics to sports and philosophy. He resides in Beloit with his daughter and continues to write sports and meeting stories for the local newspaper.