City council meeting notes: July 6, 2020

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Spencer City Council Chambers sign

The Spencer City Council discussed the following items at its regular meeting on Monday.

Planned Unit Residential Development, development ordinances clear final filings

The Spencer City Council approved, 7-0, the third and final filings of two separate ordinances, one amending parts of the city code pertaining to Planned Unit Residential Developments (PURDs) and the other pertaining to subdivision definitions.

Both ordinances seek to make city code less restrictive for future housing developments.

Mayor Kevin Robinson thanked city staff and others involved in the effort to get the code changed.

“This is a culmination of about a year-long process of cleaning up planning development, those kinds of things,” he said.

Landfill services contract with Pocahontas County approved

The city council voted 7-0 to approve a sanitary landfill services contract with Pocahontas County for fiscal years 2020 through 2023. 

The agreement is similar to those approved by the council last month with Bode, Whittemore and Emmet and Palo Alto counties. 

Per the agreement, Pocahontas County will pay $54.74 per ton for use of the Northern Plains Regional Landfill, which the City of Spencer owns, effective July 1.

That fee increases to $55.83 per ton on July 1, 2021, and then to $56.95 per ton on July 1, 2022.

Rockwell City construction firm awarded 4th Ave. SW trail project contract

Howrey Construction out of Rockwell City will be performing work on the 2020 Fourth Avenue SW trail project for $288,619.

The council unanimously approved a resolution awarding the contract on Monday.

Howrey Construction was the lowest of seven bidders. Howrey’s bid came in at 84.9% of the engineer’s estimate for the project.

The company has previously completed several other trail projects in Spencer. The last project was four miles of the Iowa Great Lakes Trail Project heading north of town. 

Carlson Dettmann to begin planning director recruitment

Planning director recruitment will soon be getting underway. 

The council on Monday unanimously approved a professional service agreement with Carlson Dettmann Consulting for human resources services. The city will pay $35,000 plus travel expenses. 

Recruiting a planning director is the top priority in the agreement, according to an agenda item memo. Other priorities include reviewing and improving the city’s employee development program, developing a human resource program and defining a human resource management role.

The council also unanimously approved a resolution that preliminarily approved the city’s compensation plan as proposed by Carlson Dettman. 

The action taken Monday is a first step and creates an appeal process that will allow employees to make sure they are placed correctly within the new compensation plan. 

Final adoption of the pay plan is expected to go into effect on July 1, 2021.

Contractor bids accepted for four properties as part of housing rehab program

The council unanimously approved accepting bids from contractors for four properties as part of the Spencer Substandard Housing Rehabilitation Program.

“I was happy to see that we’re still going forward. It looks like some deserving homes. That’ll help some homeowners,” Ward 5 Councilman Ron Hanson said during discussion.

L & J Dream Builders was awarded contracts for three properties. The company submitted bids of $27,961, $27,800 and $35,065 for those properties.

Boji Builders was awarded a contract for the fourth project. The company entered the low bid of $23,318.

The rehabilitation program is administered by the Northwest Iowa Planning and Development Commission.

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