At the meeting, City Administrator Butch Niebuhr mentioned the bike trail economic development event happening on April 10th. He also talked briefly about voluntary annexation and properties that may be brought into city limits. He provided the council with information on what it would take to get water and sewer out to these properties. Niebuhr says there has been more interest than he expected as of recently and the City will continue moving forward with the process to annex some of these properties. Mayor Jay Pattee the voluntary annexation process works well for the City and it looks like we’re about to see a large bump in that soon.
Linda Wunsch with the Greater Dallas County Development Alliance then addressed the council in regards to the memorandum of understanding between the City and the alliance. The organization is looking at Perry for as their next target State of Iowa Certified Sites Program location as the only certified park in the County. The proposed area is a 65 acre piece of land adjacent to the current Perry Industrial Park, exceeding the required 50 acres for certification. Wunsch says Perry’s application has been submitted and has moved on to step two in the process. A site visit is expected to happen in May. She says the whole process takes about 18 months to complete. Later in the meeting the Council unanimously approved the memorandum of understanding.
Next the council heard an update from the Tree Board in regards to the Emerald Ash Borer threat. Their count found there are more than 780 ash trees on public property in the City of Perry, along with an estimated 1,200 on private property. So far Dallas County is not as threatened yet but the bugs are moving west into Iowa from Illinois. John Lenz says the current cost to remove a tree is around $500, which would quickly become expensive for the City. He proposes a combination of treatment and removal in order to help limit the drastic economic impact. Though the ash borers are here yet, the board says they are coming and now is the time to make a plan and take action. The Tree Board only has an annual budget of $15,000 for tree removal, but Lenz says getting rid of all the Ash trees in Perry would be closer to $500,000.
Bob Wilson with the Perry Area Chamber of Commerce and Matt Leber then addressed the Council about Perry Antique Days coming up May 3rd and 4th. Wilson says there are about 15 vendors signed up to participate so far but they’re looking for more people who are interested in selling their antiques and collectables. He then talked briefly about the Fireworks Drive on April 3rd and the annual dinner on April 8th.
There were then three public hearings. The first was in regards to the plans, specifications and notice to bidders for the 2014 Conventional Hangar Construction project. Matt Ferrier with Bolton and Menk said there were 4 bids submitted for the project. The low bid came from Jensen Builders out of Des Moines at $305,500, or $80,000 less than the engineer’s estimate. The project will be partially funded by a state grant with the City’s portion coming from the recent bond issuance. The project is scheduled to be completed by August 1st. Following the public hearing, the Council unanimously approved the bid.
The second public hearing was in regards to the plans, specifications and notice to bidders for the 2014 Street Repairs – Hot Mix Asphalt Resurfacing project. Grimes Asphalt and Paving Corporation submitted the low bid of $291,861. Initially the council went out for bids on this project last fall but decided to retry this spring because the cost of asphalt was high at $110 per ton. It has since gone down to $99 per ton and the city has expanded the project. Later in the meeting the board approved the bid for the project.
The third public hearing was in regards to a U.S.D.A. grant application from the Perry Police Department to purchase a new squad car. The cost of the purchase is budgeted for but if awarded this grant, roughly one-third of it would be paid for by the U.S.D.A. The council approved the grant application.
Pay estimate number six for the 18th and North Street sanitary sewer project was then approved at $20,004 to Gator Excavating.
Spring Clean-up dates and procedures were then set for April 21st through the 23rd, weather permitting. Yard waste disposal dates were then set for April 2nd through November 19th, with the same procedures as previous years. Spring yard waste burning dates and procedures were also approved, with residents having permission to burn waste on private property from 10am to sundown between April 1st and June 1st. We will provide more information on the details of the procedures as the dates get closer.
Next the Council then authorized the city to sell the unneeded equipment including a cardboard baler and pit slider conveyor, Caterpillar forklift and Clark cougar mosquito sprayer. The city will look into the best option of disposing of this property through bid, trade or auction.
Councilman Chuck Schott then asked for permission to have chickens within city limits at his property at 2627 Marengo Drive. Understanding that he’s not allowed to have more than six birds or any roosters, and following an inspection from the city’s building official the council approved the request.
Finally, the council approved a plat of survey creating parcels AA and BB in block 73 of original town.
For more on last night’s meetings and things happening in the City of Perry, tune into today’s Let’s Talk Dallas County when we speak with City Administrator Butch Niebuhr on AM 1310 KDLS during the 9am, noon and 5pm hours.