Monday, January 17, 2011

01/03/11-Approved City Commission Minutes


JANUARY 03, 2011

The Governing Body of the City of Pratt, Kansas met in Regular session in the Commission Room located in City Hall.

PRESENT: Bill Hlavachick Mayor Jeff Taylor Commissioner
Victor Graf Commissioner
Gary Skaggs Commissioner

ALSO PRESENT: Dave Howard City Manager
LuAnn Kramer City Clerk
Diana Garten Finance Director
Gary Myers Asst. Chief of Police
Kelly Hemphill Dir. of Electric Utilities


Mayor Hlavachick called the regular meeting to order. The Mayor instructed the Clerk to note that all Commissioners were present with the exception of Commissioner Peltier.

Mayor Hlavachick reminded the audience that this meeting may be taped and/or recorded.


A motion by Commissioner Graf to approve the minutes of the December 20, 2010 regular meeting. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Taylor and carried unanimously.


No one in the audience wished to address the Commission.


Mr. Alan Luttrell, EBH Engineering, commented to the Commission that during the recent construction on the Main Street project, they did some hydro-excavating to find the utilities and they had been lower than expected. Mr. Luttrell stated that they had to lower the pipeline a little bit and add trench boxes, but it was for the betterment of the project and had increased the prices. Mr. Luttrell added that they had also found the underground cable that goes from Washington D.C. to Colorado Springs on Second Street. Mr. Luttrell added that, whenever they do the street project, they will have to take out the existing paving and do about ten to twelve inches of mason preparation because going over the top would have been too close. Mr. Luttrell explained that they had had to go nine to ten feet deep to get underneath the cable in the location by Joey’s Barber Shop and that added cost to the project as well.

Mr. Luttrell commented that the change order was for about $27,000, but if they had hit one of the existing lines, it would have caused more turmoil than that. Commissioner Skaggs questioned if they had to go down nine or ten feet from First Street to Sixth Street. Mr. Luttrell explained that they had to go that deep to get under the existing pipeline at Second Street, but the rest was anywhere from four to five feet. Mr. Luttrell added that anything over five feet of cover requires a trench box and although there was an OSHA guy there, no one was written up. City Manager Dave Howard commented that they had also had to increase the length of pipe to fire hydrants.

Mr. Luttrell stated that there would be one other change order item when the project was done which was additional steel casing pipe about twenty feet on each intersection going east and west and at First Street. Mr. Luttrell estimated that the cost per unit would be about $20,000 and that this was also for the betterment of the job and was a reasonable price on the change order. Mr. Howard commented that if they had hit one of those lines, it would have cost more than that. Mr. Howard reminded the Commission that this project was funded though the loan with KDHE and was for more than the amount. Mr. Luttrell recommended approving the change order for $27,053.31. A motion by Commissioner Skaggs to approve the change order for the Main Street waterline project. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Taylor and carried unanimously.


City Manager Dave Howard commented that the City was allocated so much money from the Federal Government each year that effects their area, but the State had a program that would give you back 90% of those funds on the road projects, but they were now loosening up the restrictions on those funds for a 10% reduction and you can use it for any project in your city.

Mr. Howard stated that he had been working with Public Works Director Russell Rambat and had looked at several roads that actually need attention and one of those areas would be Tenth Street. Mr. Howard added that that road should be done in concrete since the concrete plant uses Tenth Street a lot.

Mr. Howard recommended to the Commission that the City do this program, but there was only $17,000 in it and that would not go very far. Mr. Howard commented that if we get the allocated amount for this year of $76,440, we would look at Tenth Street. Mr. Howard stated that what the City would do would be to plan Tenth Street and bid it out at the end of the year, but if the funds did not come in, then we would have to put it off one or two years. Mr. Howard stated that just to get out of the Federal requirements would be worth the 10%, because it would cost us more than that to comply.

Commissioner Skaggs asked for clarification of whether the $76,440 was before or after the percentage. Mr. Howard explained that it was the estimated amount before the 10% for the year 2011 and that was if the Federal Government continued to fund it the way they have. Mr. Howard added that the $76,440 would not do all of Tenth Street, but we would have to look at where the rest of the funds would come from, but he added that we needed to get that project on the books.

A motion by Commissioner Taylor to go along with the Federal Fund Exchange program guidelines and approve it. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Skaggs and carried unanimously.


Ms. Karen Detwiler commented that she had the signed agreement from the Humane Society and handed it to Mr. Howard. Ms. Detwiler commented that she appreciated the Commission hearing their concerns and reconsidering no increase in the City’s donation. Ms. Detwiler stated that the shelter manager was a single parent and made $1,300 a month, which half of that went towards rent, leaving the rest for utilities, groceries, etc. Commissioner Taylor interrupted Ms. Detwiler and stated that they should not put the manager making a living on the City. Commissioner Taylor stated that he appreciated the information that they had brought, but it was not the Commission’s responsibility to run the Humane Society and they should find a way to do it on the funds they have available.

Ms. Detwiler continued stating that the insurance on the facility had doubled and then was canceled due to claims for storm damage and an employee had gotten bit and that was on worker’s comp, so the company felt that they were not a good risk. Commissioner Skaggs questioned what figures had doubled. Ms. Detwiler and Ms. Barb Prater stated that it was now about $1,500 per year.

Ms. Detwiler commented that they had researched the Humane Society of the US and they provide scholarships, but no monetary support. Ms. Detwiler suggested that if someone was donating to them, they might consider donating locally. Ms. Detwiler commented that the American Humane Society helped out with shelter improvements and animal care, but not administrative costs. Ms. Detwiler explained that they had other options, but the grants that were available were not for the day to day operations.

Ms. Detwiler assured the Commission that they were not sitting on the back of their heels, but with the increase in insurance costs, maintenance and all the other things they cannot manage on what they are getting. Ms. Detwiler commented that they appreciate the Commission approving the contract and will accept that and go on as they can.

Mayor Hlavachick commented that he personally would not like to make any decisions tonight and table it until Commissioner Peltier was present, since he had specific thoughts as a dog owner and lover. Commissioner Graf commented that he felt that they should get the money to keep them going since we give money for everything else. Commissioner Graf added that they were a non-profit organization and it would not speak good of the City and this was the second meeting going through this.

Mr. Howard commented that he had spoken to the shelter manager concerning the number of dogs that were returned to the owners or adopted out. Mr. Howard stated that he had also visited with the veterinarian about euthanizing costs and they were different than Ms. Detwiler’s. Mr. Howard added that he had received a cost of $50 per animal with the City disposing of the animal. Ms. Detwiler commented that the fee she had stated included the disposal fee.

Mayor Hlavachick asked how much the County had raised their donation to. Ms. Detwiler stated that they were now paying $1,000 a month and did not require them to have open pens. Ms. Detwiler added that they also pick up the cost if no pens are available. Mayor Hlavachick commented that he was not in favor of the tax payers paying another $1,000 a month, but he would consider $500. Commissioner Taylor stated that he had been contacted several times after there was the comment in the paper and he explained that there were people in the community who like puppies until they grow up. Commissioner Taylor added that people do not want to pay for those types of people and he felt that the money the City was spending right now was too much. Commissioner Taylor explained that the Humane Society had built the new building and now they want more money since the needs are higher.

Commissioner Graf made a motion to give the Humane Society $1,000 more a month to keep them going. After a moment of silence, Mayor Hlavachick declared the motion had died due to the lack of a second. A motion by Commissioner Skaggs to increase the City donation by $500 per month for the end of the contract and look at it again at the next renewal. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Graf. The Clerk took a roll call vote: Commissioner Taylor-no; Mayor Hlavachick-yes; Commissioner Skaggs-yes; Commissioner Graf-yes. Mayor Hlavachick commented that he wanted it noted that he was against voting without Commissioner Peltier present. The motion passed by a four to one vote.

City Manager Howard stated that the increase would start January 1, 2011. Ms. Detwiler thanked the Commission and stated that they had built bigger because the State said they had to. Commissioner Skaggs commended the volunteers and told them to continue the good work, but asked them to try to find more volunteers. Commissioner Taylor stated that that was the secret and they needed to find more private funds and not be a burden on the taxpayers. Commissioner Taylor added that donations should come from the heart.


City Manager:

• Downtown meeting:

City Manager Howard commented that there would be a meeting on the 12th for the downtown merchants so they could go over the next phase of the Main Street project. Mr. Howard added that notices had not been sent out yet, so it could be moved to the 19th at 6:00 p.m.

Public Works:

Public Works Director Russell Rambat commented that he would be working with Mr. Howard to get material for the downtown merchants meeting.

• Curb and gutter:

Mr. Rambat commented that he would be starting on the curb, gutter and sidewalk project for this year. Mr. Rambat added that he would be getting busy again.

Electric Departments:

• Line guys:

Director of Electric Utilities Kelly Hemphill commented that the Line Department was removing Christmas decorations.

• Maintenance:

Power Plant Superintendent Ernie Smith commented that they were continuing to do maintenance on the engines and they would probably be running sometime this week.

Finance Department:

• 2010 Audit:

Finance Director Diana Garten commented that the auditors would be here the middle of January for their preliminary review.


• Dog park:

Mayor Hlavachick commented that he had a pamphlet from Hutchinson concerning their dog park and he would get it to Recreation Director Bruce Pinkall. Mayor Hlavachick stated that he had had several comments that it was a good idea. Mayor Hlavachick added that he would like to also see that the Advisory Board get a copy of the pamphlet.


A motion by Commissioner Taylor to adjourn. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Graf and carried unanimously.





Thursday, January 13, 2011

01/17/2011 City Commission Meeting Agenda


JANUARY 17, 2011



1. CALL TO ORDER (Remind audience that meeting is being recorded and/or taped.)


3. MINUTES – January 03, 2011 Regular City Commission meeting



5.1 Consideration and Approval to Waive Rental Fee for Fire Fighters Auxiliary Craft Fair on April 9th - Alichia VanSlyke, Pratt Fire Fighters Auxiliary Vice-President

5.2 Consideration and Approval for City Fire Department to Hold a Car Show as a Fund Raiser – Captain Todd Hoffman, Pratt City Fire Department

5.3 Consideration and Approval of ‘New’ Application for 2011 Cereal Malt Beverage License – Gary Myers, Asst. Police Chief

5.4 Information Concerning General Public Transportation’s Process for Receiving KDOT Funding – Tiffany Brown, Director

5.5 Discussion with Master Gardner’s Concerning South Main Planters – Kathy Stewart, Linda Broce (No info for packet)

5.6 Consideration and Approval of Re-appointment of Dennis Rasmussen to the Cemetery Board – Russell Rambat, Public Works Director (Three Year Term)

5.7 Consideration and Approval of the Purchase of New Aerial Photography from the County – Russell Rambat, Public Works Director


6.1 City Manager
6.2 City Attorney
6.3 Department Heads
6.4 Mayor
6.5 City Commission