Village of Ashkum Board of Trustees met December 4.
Village of Ashkum Board of Trustees met Dec. 4.
Here is the minutes provided by the Board:
The Ashkum Village Board met Monday, December 4, 2017 @ the village hall. Present were Donna Schmitz, Ed Tholen, Shannon Meier, Jeremy Beherns, Russ Hull, and April Lyons. Village Attorney Nicholas Elliot, Maintenance Supervisor Jeff Hanson and Treasurer Krystal Alberts were also in attendance. President Heideman was not present.
In the absence of President Heideman, Ed Tholen called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. At Village Attorney Nicholas Elliott’s recommendation to make Ed Tholen as President Pro Tem for this meeting only due to legal papers requiring the president’s signature, April Lyons moved to make Ed Tholen President Pro Tem for this meeting only, seconded by Russ Hull and the motion passed unanimously.
Clerk Donna Schmitz read the minutes of the November 6, 2017 meeting. April Lyons moved to approve the minutes as read, seconded by Shannon Meier and the motion passed.
President Pro Tem Tholen recognized Treasurer Krystal Alberts who gave the treasurer’s report for November 2017. Krystal noted one of the Police Fund CDs will mature this month and asked what she should do. She was advised to let the CD roll over. April Lyons moved to accept the report as read, seconded by Jeremy Beherns and the motion passed. April Lyons moved to present the bills to the Finance Committee, seconded by Jeremy Beherns and the motion passed. Finance Chairman Ed Tholen reported expenditures of $34,047.19 in the General Fund and expenditures of $12,626.43 in the Water Works Fund. Total expenditures in both funds were $46,673.62. Krystal reported there isn’t enough money in the Water Works Fund to pay the bills and maintain the minimum balance required without penalty and asked if she should transfer part out of the Water Works Fund and part out of the General Fund or should she transfer all out of the General Fund? April Lyons moved to transfer all from the General Fund to pay the Water Works expenditures, seconded by Jeremy Beherns and the motion passed. April Lyons moved to pay November bills in the usual manner, seconded by Shannon Meier and the motion passed.
President Pro Tem Tholen recognized Maintenance Supervisor Jeff Hanson who reported on the following:
Jeff reported he has the money for the bench to be purchased in memory of Steve Hemp and asked which bench to order because the quote is only good until December 15th. President Heideman and Russ Schoon had checked the catalog and agreed on the one to order, but neither of them are available before the 15th. Jeff was advised he is the maintenance supervisor and to order the one that will closest match the benches near the veteran’s memorial. Jeff also reported he received prices for ends of benches. There was a question whether a motion to purchase a bench in memory of Steve Hemp had been made at a previous meeting. Russ Hull moved to purchase a bench in memory of Steve Hemp, seconded by Shannon Meier and the motion passed.
Jeff reported he had to call the company that installed the Christmas decorations again because two are falling. The last time he called, the company was very prompt in taking care of the matter.
Dave Mayes started the project of demolishing his building on Main Street and the water service has been shut off. The building actually looks better now than it has for a long time.
Jeff reported he signed up for the required water class he has to take as Maintenance Supervisor. The four day class is scheduled for the end of January and is in Geneva. The test will be in March and another test will be held a week later. Jeff reported the cost for the class is $150 and he wasn’t sure whether he would drive back and forth every day or not. The board advised Jeff to get a room and stay in Geneva because it’s too far to travel every day. The village will cover the expenses for the class including mileage and meals.
Jeff reported he was waiting for a call from Comcast regarding Internet for the maintenance building. April Lyons has the number of the representative from Comcast and will call to find out why we have to have another account number when they can run a wire from this building over to the maintenance building.
Jeff reported he didn’t order the PC because he didn’t have the Internet access yet.
President Pro Tem Tholen recognized Village Attorney Nicholas Elliott who gave his legal advice on the following:
Copies of the proposed 2017-2018 Tax Levy Ordinance were distributed for review and discussion. Mr. Elliott reported the village did not exceed 105% and didn’t have to hold a truth and taxation meeting. April Lyons moved to approve ORDINANCE 2017-05, A TAX LEVY ORDINANCE FOR YEARS 2017 – 2018, seconded by Shannon Meier and the motion passed by a roll call vote. Lyons, aye; Hull, aye; Beherns, aye; Meier, aye; and Tholen, aye. President Heideman was absent.
Referring to his legal opinion about the treasurer keeping her books and checks at the village hall; Mr. Elliott explained it was made to prevent future issues should they arise. Treasurer Krystal Alberts asked if she could present her argument against his decision. Krystal reported she is bonded, all the books and checks are located in a separate room of her home with no one else having access to them, the books are actually safer at her house than at the village hall because the village doesn’t have her office locked, and she checked with the village auditor for his opinion. The auditor didn’t have a problem with her doing the books from her home, when in fact; a lot of villages do it. Discussion followed about all records being secure at the village hall and what could be done about it. There hasn’t been a door to the treasurer’s office since our building was remodeled and some records are not filed in fireproof cabinets. The fireproof cabinets are very expense, but April Lyons remarked price should not be a factor when keeping village records safe. Adding a door with a key was also discussed as a safety measure. April Lyons moved to have Jeff Hanson, Maintenance Supervisor install a door with key to the treasurer’s office, seconded by Shannon Meier and the motion passed. All elected and appointed officials will be given keys to the office. Attorney Elliott responded to Krystal’s rebuttal by advising the board if they feel comfortable with her doing the work from home and the records are kept in a locked room at the village, he has no problem with their decision.
Referencing the property with a judgment against it, Mr. Elliott advised the board not to waive the $12,000 awarded the village at this time. The board considered waiving the $12,000 if the owner’s son cleared the property of debris and the property with the house on it was demolished. The son advised the board it would cost $10,000 to tear the house, and the house really belonged to his mother. He wants to do what is right for his mother, even if it means selling the property. Mr. Elliott noted if the son sells the property for $12,000 or $15,000, the village can always negotiate the lien down, but if they waive it, we have no recourse. The board decided to heed Mr. Elliot’s legal opinion.
President Pro Tem Tholen reported the streets were swept the first of December and suggested authorization for the expenditure is given by the board. Russ Hull moved to authorize the expenditure for sweeping the streets, seconded by Jeremy Beherns and the motion passed.
President Pro Tem Tholen asked whether there is an update or recommendation for replacing the chairs in our office. Shannon Meier suggested we get pricing for adjustable and comfortable chairs and action can be taken at that time.
Trustee April Lyons had no report.
Trustee Russ Hull had no report.
Trustee Jeremy Beherns had no report.
Trustee Shannon Meier had no report.
Trustee Ed Tholen reported payment of the final bill for the tile project is on hold until the repair work has met with Dave Tyson’s approval.
Clerk Donna Schmitz had no report but reminded everyone the Santa Train will be here Sunday.
As there was no further business to come before the board Shannon Meier moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:10 p.m., seconded by April Lyons and the motion passed.