Uniontown City Council approves personnel changes

Saturday, July 12, 2014
Loretta George/Tribune photo During a reception in his honor, Larry Neville, second from right, receives a plaque of appreciation and two tickets to the Chiefs and Broncos game in November. The reception was held prior to Tuesday's Uniontown City Council meeting. Neville has served as the city's treasurer since 2007. Also pictured are city council members Jess Ervin, Amber Kelly and Mayor Larry Jurgensen, right.

Two new faces will be a part of the City of Uniontown personnel.

At the monthly meeting Tuesday, the council swore in a new treasurer, accepted the resignation of a newly hired maintenance worker and started the process to replace the worker.

Christine Middleton was sworn in as treasurer to replace Larry Neville.

During a public retirement reception for Neville prior to the council meeting, he was awarded a plaque of appreciation and two tickets to the Chiefs/Broncos game. He has been treasurer since 2007, and will stay on until August to help Middleton with the budget process.

Willie Davis resigned as maintenance worker for the city, effective July 1, for medical reasons. Davis was hired April 15. In a later executive session, the council approved placing an ad in The Tribune for a part-time, as needed, maintenance worker.

Middleton gave the treasurers report, with a total of $581,065.19.

Neville requested a date for a budget workshop to be held with the council prior to the August meeting, and the council agreed on July 21.

Water project

Mayor Larry Jurgensen said Lathrop Construction of Nevada, Mo., the water system improvement contractor, will work to restore the ditches they have disturbed during the water project but will not re-seed the ditches, when the project is nearing completion.

The wet ditches are slowing down work, Jurgensen said. Lathrop wants to do the work at the school prior to September, Jurgensen said.

Cunningham, Inc., Riverton, will paint the water tank, City Clerk Sally Johnson said, then a chain link fence will be put around it.

Resident Danny Graham purchased a pump to help with water pressure in his new house south of the water tank. Johnson said that after deliberation, Graham wants to buy water from the city of Uniontown instead of Bourbon County Consolidated Rural Water District Two.

Additionally, the council approved paying bills for the water project, pending receipt of Community Development Block Grant funds.

Post Office hours

The Uniontown Post Office will be reducing hours to 8 a.m. to noon. Currently the post office is open eight hours a day. This reduction in hours follows the recent public hearing and customer surveys. This will take effect in January, Johnson told the council. If Postmistress Karen Sager takes early retirement, the change will take place 30 days after her retirement, she said.

"If this happens there will be a need to get an account with Federal Express or United Postal Service for water samples to be sent to Topeka as required by law," Johnson said. "The reduction of hours was based on the amount of walk-in revenue produced at the post office."

Walking trail

Councilwoman Amber Kelly said the community walking trail behind the school needs to be mowed. Jurgensen said USD 235 Superintendent Randy Rockhold has had several complaints about the issue and suggested Kelly speak to Rockhold.

City rock

Jurgensen said several citizens have asked to buy rock from the city stockpile, in small amounts that Rich could deliver in a bucket on the tractor. Rich said it would be good to set rates for it, but leave the decision to his discretion as to whether the job should be done. He said there are issues such as proximity to buildings, that should be considered. A charge for rock, time and labor was decided at $30 per tractor bucket for the service to residents, when Rich is not working on other city duties. Residents will be given an invoice for the service.

Alley closed

Jurgensen requested fill dirt for his property on Clay Street and advised the council that the alley behind the property will be closed while he puts a French drain on that property.

Mosquito control

Jurgensen requested spraying the town for mosquitoes before the Independence Day celebration on July 3, which was granted and sprayed on July 2 by the city of Bronson personnel. Jurgensen will gather information on a mosquito sprayer for the City of Uniontown.

Hinton Creek gas line relocation

Hinton Creek gas line relocation started July 7, south of town. Northern Pipeline Mid America of Topeka was at the site. A Kansas Corporation Commission inspector shut them down until paperwork is in hand for welding qualifications, Johnson said.

Union Station annexation

Johnson said there is a signed consent for annexation of Union Station, a resolution has been sent to the Bourbon County Clerk and has been published. She said she hasn't heard whether it has been on the county commission agenda. Ron Eldridge, owner of Union Station, would like to know a week in advance to get his cash register re-programned, Johnson said. The sales tax for Union Station is currently 7.15, will increase to 8.15 after the annexation. The revenues will increase the general fund of the city and hopefully keep the mill levy down, Johnson said.

Multi-function building

The council approved a resolution to adopt the Region H Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan, at the request of William Wallis, Bourbon County Emergency Manager. This is a preliminary step for pursuing a multi-functional building which would include a storm shelter, city hall, library and community building.

"We adopt, then we have a foot in the door for future 14921 b-26," Johnson said."He (Wallis) approached us about doing this. He said he would help us draft a mitigation plan for the city. I don't think you can apply until you have adopted this resolution for future funding for mitigation projects under multiple Federal Emergency Management Agency pre and post mitigation grant programs."

In other business, the council:

* Approved the consent agenda.

* Approved City Superintendent Bobby Rich to attend the Water and Wastewater Operators School on July 30 in Lawrence.

* Approved five to 10 more barricades for public use. Councilman Seth Martin said he would get some cone barricades.

* Discussed nuisance weed and grass on properties in town. Johnson was requested to send the property owners a reminder of the ordinance and giving 10 days to mow their property. Jurgensen said the court system is being set up, which should help with the nuisances.

*Approved Rich to purchase 20 gas meter replacements.

*Voted to purchase more signs for slowing down traffic for children in higher traffic areas in town.