The City of Vandalia’s Board of Aldermen did approve the establishment of the city’s Improvement Authority needed to comply with Missouri state law in relation to the refinancing of the Vandalia Aquatic Center.
Due to regulations in the Missouri state banking law, banks like Central Bank can not have direct interest in government owned property or assets.
This new authority acts as a non-prophet entity that acts on the city’s behalf.
At the meeting, Curt Gilliam and Erick Creach, both of PiperJaffray, were present at the meeting to discuss in further detail the need for the authority to be a separate entity of the City of Vandalia to complete the refinancing.
It was noted there was a $50 set-up fee along with annual and bi-annual meeting requirements.
Alderman Bob Dunn asked if there would be a change in interest rates and it was noted that the move will not.
Gilliam, who is the Assistant Vice-President of PiperJaffray, thanked the board for choosing their company to help with the refinancing process.
Alderman John Weiser asked why the city wasn’t told that an authority would need to be formed up front?
“It seems like everything’s being pushed that this is the only way you can do this and I know there’s other ways,” Weiser said.
Creach said the structure in the State of Missouri is very common and he’s handled multiple of the same types of situations to help entities to work with local banks offering the low interest rate.
Alderman Weiser noted how he was also concerned about the by-laws.
He specifically noted where there are three members and any two can act on their own.
He also noted that the bylaws show that the members can be on the board of the association as long as they want to be.
Creach noted that the new association board can do nothing without the authority of the city’s Board of Alderman.
Alderman Weiser asked what would happen if one of the members didn’t want to serve as secretary or treasurer and it was noted that the members could appoint someone for a duty?
Alderman Weiser said he would like to see the options in writing to make a better determination.
Alderman Doug Bontz said he thought the city had seen the options in writing.
With a 2.14% interest rate, savings will be about $90,300 and an additional $12,500 savings will happen over the next 10 years.
So a total of $102,857 will be saved by the city over the next 10 years with the refinancing through Central Bank of Audrain County.
The rate is locked in this deal.
A Bill No. 17-1165 was read for the first time. Both the first and second reading of the bill were approved by all aldermen except for Alderman Weiser, who voted “Nay.”
Corner Information Update
Audrain County Eastern District Commissioner Alan Winders, who is also a member of the Citizens Advisory group of the Highway 54 Coalition, was present to provide an update on MoDOT’s consideration of safety improvements for Scott’s Corner and Basinger Corner.
He noted a meeting was scheduled for Friday at 4 p.m. at Community R-VI to receive input regarding possible changes. The public is invited to the meeting.
Commissioner Winders noted that both intersections have had one fatality and more than 20 total accidents since 2011.
He noted an interchange or overpass are not likely. Four-way stop signs or signals are not ruled out but likely not at the top of the list based on public input received in the past.
Reduced speed options have been discussed. Round-about options are also on the table and have some support from the Laddonia and Martinsburg community area. Alderman Bontz said he liked the round-about idea, especially seeing one at Scott’s Corner. He noted one on Highway 13.
City Administrator Chase Waggoner said the main thing is the lanes are wide enough for the semis to get around.
New Business and Future Agenda Items
City Administrator Waggoner talked about concealed weapon policies and the need to revisit them for employees along with those carried in city buildings.
As for employee classifications, it would note a step system for all city employees. City Administrator Waggoner said he’s been discussing it with employees during the past month and he’s expecting to make a presentation during the next board meeting.
The 2017-2018 Budget will be an agenda item during the February council meeting.
Estimates were sought on the Police Station/Casey’s Building Project. City Administrator Waggoner said he has the estimates but didn’t have time to put together the findings in time for this month’s board meeting. It will be further discussed at the next council meeting.
An update to the City Code was discussed briefly. It is noted that some sections may be updated over the next few months to “modernize” the code.
Alderman Bontz noted a concern about giving City Hall too much control by making policies for ordinances already in place.
The Water Surcharge/Sewer Surcharge was also discussed. It was noted they were used for capital projects in the past.
He noted the need for a equipment replacement program.
Alderman Dunn said he has a problem with increasing the rates.
City Administrator Waggoner introduced new Vandalia Police Chief Christopher Hammann.
Citizens to be Heard
During the Citizens to be Heard portion of the meeting, Vandalia resident Patricia Kraft complimented the police department for quickly responding to her call on a possible break-in. She also complimented the utility department for their quick response to a down power line in the area of her property.
Alderman Bontz said he had two citizens call him. One related to why the city didn’t plow the street. Street Superintendent Dave Hamby said it was because they were salted and there was only two inches of snow. He noted that the streets would be slicker if plowed. Alderman Bontz also asked about the possibility of providing recycling bins.
New Audrain County Sheriff Matt Oller introduced himself to the City Council and offered the services of the Audrain County Sheriff’s Office to help the city any way it can.
Aldermen approved the Accounts Payable Report.
Aldermen also approved the meeting minutes for December 13, 2016.
Finance Officer Sharon Myers noted delinquent utility bills to be written off to the accounts receivable balance. The “writing off” of an account does not affect the city’s ability to collect on the account, nor does it affect our intent to collect. City staff attempts to collect these accounts before sending them to a collection agency, where they actively seek payment on the accounts. A list of the bills to be written off was provided, which totaled $20,352.43.
Alderman Weiser asked about the status of employee health insurance. It was noted that no cards or group number has been provided from the insurance company. He said he requested the item to be on the agenda and it was not put on it.
Alderman Gabe Jennings said the employees shouldn’t be walking around without insurance companies.
City Administrator Waggoner noted that he had “dropped the ball” and failed to put the employee health insurance item on the meeting agenda.
A special meeting was discussed and due to posting times, would be held on Thursday, January 12 at 5:30 p.m. if the requested information was not received.
It was noted that employees are insured they just didn’t have their cards.
An Executive Session was held and it lasted more than one hour.