February 2019 Minutes

Print
Press Enter to show all options, press Tab go to next option

Regular Meeting of the Council Members of the City of Nixa, Missouri

Nixa City Hall                                                                                  February 11, 2019 7:00 p.m.

The regular monthly meeting of the Nixa City Council was called to order by Mayor Brian Steele.  Attending were Council Members Matt Barker, Justin Orf, Jimmy Ledbetter, Jr., Aron Peterson, Darlene Graham and Scott Perryman.  

The pledge of allegiance was given

Visitors:

Dr. Tamara Fusco, pediatrician and Nixa resident, introduced herself to Council and announced she was running for school board.  Fusco provided a brief summary of her credentials and some of her core goals.  Council thanked Dr. Fusco for attending the meeting. 

Proclamation:

Mayor Steele read the Ronald McDonald House Week proclamation and announced February 11th through February 17th, 2019 as “Ronald McDonald House Week” in Nixa. 

Budget Amendment:

Public Works Director Doug Colvin addressed Council with a budget amendment request for $75,000.00 to finish the Wasson Lift Station Force Main capital improvement project (CIP).  Colvin explained the original project was budgeted in 2018 for $100,000.00 but the low bid was awarded to Flatcreek Excavating for $164,772.00.  The contract was approved in 2018 and Council also approved a budget amendment for the additional $64,772.00.  The first payment of $97,879.87 was made in December and the project was carried over to 2019.  Colvin explained the 2019 budget carry over was underestimated and there has been additional work during the project.  Colvin asked Council for a budget amendment of $75,000.00 to cover the expenses for the project.  Ledbetter made a motion to approve a budget amendment for $75,000.00 for the Wasson Lift Station Force Main CIP.  Orf seconded the motion and all Council members voted aye. 

Ordinances:

Bill #2019-021

Authorizing the Mayor to Sign a Contract with Davis Structure and Development Corporation for the Multi Rake Screen and Washer Compactor and Installation Project was presented. Ledbetter made a motion to approve Bill #2019-021 on first reading and pass to second with Peterson seconding. Colvin introduced information on the fine screen replacement project at the Wastewater Treatment Plant.  Colvin stated the project bid of $165,108.00 was awarded to Davis Structure and Development Corporation at the last Council meeting.  Colvin said City Attorney Tim Ricker has reviewed the contract presented tonight.  Staff recommends approval of the ordinance. After a brief discussion, Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a vote on the motion and all Council members voted aye.  Bill # 2019-021 was presented for final reading.  Ledbetter made a motion to approve Bill #2019-021 on final reading and pass into law with Barker seconding and Orf, Ledbetter, Peterson, Graham, Perryman and Barker voting aye on roll call vote.

Bill #2019-022

Allowing the Mayor to Execute Documents Supporting the Grant of a Temporary Construction Easement Along Route 14 by the Public Building Corporation of the City of Nixa was presented. Ledbetter made a motion to approve Bill #2019-022 on first reading and pass to second with Peterson seconding. City Attorney Tim Ricker explained that MoDOT is needing a temporary construction easement granted for the widening of Highway 14. Ricker explained that Bond Counsel and the Trustee have agreed that the PBC can move forward with the grant of the easement.  This ordinance authorizes the Mayor to sign documents supporting the grant of the easement.   Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a vote on the motion and all Council members voted aye.  Bill # 2019-022 was presented for final reading.  Ledbetter made a motion to approve Bill #2019-022 on final reading and pass into law with Graham seconding and Ledbetter, Peterson, Graham, Perryman, Barker and Orf voting aye on roll call vote.

Discussion Items:

New Business items:

Finance Director Donna Swatzell provided Council with information on merchant card fees for utility payments.  Swatzell said since the city began accepting credit and debit card payments for utilities the merchant fee expense has continued to grow.  While credit card payments are a huge convenience to the customers, merchant cards fees of up to three percent (3%) per transaction are being assessed.  Swatzell said that in most cases the benefits of accepting credit and debit card payment usually offset the costs. However, when large payments are made, the cost is large and outweighs the benefit.  Swatzell is asking for Council to limit the transaction amounts to $1,000.00 with five (5) uses per card per month.  Swatzell would like to continue to offer the convenience of using credit and debit cards and this limitation would affect a small number of transactions and still reduce the merchant fees.  Council held a discussion on the need and practice of the limitations.  After discussion was held, Council gave direction to bring back a policy for consideration.   

Next, Swatzell introduced information on a water leak adjustment policy.  Swatzell explained the frequency of requests for water credits due to an undetected water leak or vandalism. Swatzell expressed the need to have a policy in place to provide guidance for adjustments. Staff recommended the following criteria for the policy: adjustments would be limited to a one (1) time credit per twelve (12) months per customer, proof of repair must be provided, adjustments to sewer charges would reflect normal usage and finally, adjustment to water would be reduced by seventy-five percent (75%) of metered usage.  Water Quality Superintendent Milton Dickensheet added that when a customer is notified of unusual water usage that the Water Department goes out to the address to make sure the leak is not in the meter. Utility Billing Supervisor Deanna Allen was present in the audience and available to answer any questions about the policy.  Allen added the department was looking for ways to educate customers.  After a brief discussion, Council gave direction to bring a policy back for consideration.

Human Resource Director Amanda Hunsucker presented the proposed revised personnel handbook policies.  Hunsucker stated the revision eliminates compensatory time (comp time) in the Police Department.  Hunsucker explained comp time would not be allowed to accrue and overtime would be paid out. Interim Chief, Major Joe Campbell explained the department is getting into a bind in covering shifts.  Campbell said comp time was originally introduced for new employees but with the change in police holidays and the addition of one (1) week vacation for new employees, the department has seen an increase in time off and the comp time is causing issues.  Campbell is having trouble covering shifts especially if an employee abuses the system.   Hunsucker was available for questions.  A resolution will be brought back at the next meeting on the change. 

 Next up, Major Campbell provided Council with information on the proposed revisions to the police department policy manual.  These new and/or revised policies included: Domestic Violence, Child Abuse, Hate Crimes, Death Investigation, Communications with Persons with Disabilities, Biological Samples, Child and Dependent Adult Safety, Department Use of Social Media, Crime and Disaster Scene Integrity, Hazardous Material Response, Communicable Diseases and Commendations and Awards.   Campbell said both he and City Attorney Tim Ricker had reviewed the policies.  Campbell was available for any questions on the policies.  Campbell will be bringing back a resolution for the revised policies at the next Council meeting.

City Administrator Jimmy Liles announced that Walmart is adding an online grocery pick-up service at their current Nixa location.  Walmart is wanting to expand this drive-through service and include alcohol sales.  Liles said Nixa’s current ordinance does not allow this practice.  So, for a business to allow drive-through liquor sales, Nixa would need to amend our ordinances.  Liles recommends consideration of an amendment by following the Missouri Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Control recommendations and guidelines to address any safety concerns. Kipp Easley, Nixa Walmart manager, addressed Council and explained the checks in place that provided safety concerns on handling alcohol sales.  Easley explained the alcohol is staged in a secure area and the ticket flagged for security checks such as identification requirements.  Easley explained that Walmart plans to do drive up grocery sales not just liquor sales.  This is a plan to expand their services for customer convenience.  Easley assured Council that anyone ordering liquor will be asked to provide proper identification when the groceries and liquor are picked up.  If identification is not provided, the liquor sale would be voided and only the groceries would be allowed to be picked up.   After a lengthy deliberation, Council gave direction to bring back an amendment to the ordinance.   

 

Lucas Waldren, Nixa’s Systems Network Technician, reviewed information on the current phone system.  Waldren stated the current phone system is no longer supported due to age and a company buy out.  Waldren reported that Pitt Technology has offered to combine the new phone contract with our current contract which includes the firewall, switch, server backups, internet and dedicated rack space in the underground and reduce our costs.  Waldren said the city would continue to use the current hardware and save money.  Council thanked Waldren for the information.  A contract and ordinance will be brought back for consideration. 

Swatzell addressed Council with information on 2018 surplus operational revenue and unexpended operation expenditures.  Swatzell reviewed the savings shown within each of the General Fund Departments.  This operational savings totaled $478,455.00.  during the January 28th Council meeting, Mayor Steele had suggested moving some of this savings into an economic development fund.  After a brief discussion, Council suggested committing $450,000.00 into an Economic Development Fund. Swatzell will bring back an ordinance for the commitment.

Per Council’s request, Campbell investigated a resident’s request to amending our current ordinance to allow for nighttime golf cart usage.  Campbell said he had concerns with safety and visibility.  Campbell reported that most golf carts will not meet the minimum safety requirements and advised against this practice.  After a short discussion, Council agreed with Campbell’s recommendation to leave the golf cart ordinance as is. 

Quarterly liaison reports were scheduled for the year based on expected schedules.  Aron Peterson will be providing the first quarter liaison report with Jimmy Ledbetter, Scott Perryman and Justin Orf finishing out the year. 

Mayor and Council Member Reports:

Home Rule Charter Review Committee nominees are due at the next meeting.  We will need three (3) residents from each district for a total of nine (9) members.  

Council discussed some concerns with the storm sirens.  

Executive Session:

At 8:08 p.m., Peterson made a motion to move to executive session pursuant to RSMo 610.021.3-Personnel with Ledbetter seconding and Peterson, Graham, Perryman, Barker, Orf and Ledbetter voting aye on roll call vote.

Council returned to regular session at 9:21 p.m.

Adjourn:

At 9:22 p.m., Barker made a motion to adjourn with Ledbetter seconding and all Council members voting aye.

 

 

Regular Meeting of the Council Members of the City of Nixa, Missouri

Nixa City Hall                                                                      February 25th, 2019     7:00 p.m.

The regular monthly meeting of the Nixa City Council was called to order by Mayor Brian Steele.  Attending were Council Members Matt Barker, Justin Orf, Aron Peterson and Darlene Graham.  Jimmy Ledbetter, Jr. attended by video conference. Scott Perryman was absent.

The pledge of allegiance was given.

Consent Agenda:

Mayor Steele called for a motion on the Consent Agenda. Peterson made a motion to remove item c from the consent agenda and move it to the resolution portion of the agenda for discussion.  Orf seconded the motion and all Council members voted aye.  Barker then made a motion to accept the Consent Agenda as amended, items a, b and d. Orf seconded the motion and Orf, Ledbetter, Peterson, Graham and Barker voted aye on roll call vote.

Visitors:

None.

Appointment of Police Chief:

Mayor Steele nominated Major Joe Campbell to be appointed Nixa’s Chief of Police.  Steele said Campbell has served as Interim Chief since September of 2018 and has been an exemplary leader and has a great depth of experience.  Campbell has worked for the Nixa Police Department for sixteen (16) years and has been in law enforcement for eighteen (18) years.  Orf made a motion to accept the nomination of Joe Campbell and appoint him to the position of Chief of Police.  Peterson seconded the motion and Ledbetter, Peterson, Graham, Barker and Orf voted aye on roll call vote. 

Swear in Chief of Police:

City Clerk Cindy Robbins swore Joe Campbell in as Chief of Police.

Badge Pinning Ceremony:

Joe Campbell's wife, Holly Campbell did the honor of badge pinning for the newly appointed Chief of Police.

Presentations:

Scott McDonald, Karen McKnight and Dr. Geral Loden, Nixa Public Schools, provided Council with an informative presentation on the upcoming April 2, 2019 ballot issues.  McDonald explained the Nixa Board of Education has approved two (2) issues for the ballot.  Question 1 is a debt service bond issue with no tax levy increase.  McDonald explained the money generated would be used for construction or renovations.  Question 2 would increase the current operating levy by $0.41.  Money generated from this increase would be used for increasing salaries as well as construction or renovations. Approval of both issues would allow the district to complete a list of projects.  This listing is available at City Hall for review along with additional items of interest found on the informational flyer included in the Council packet. McKnight also spoke on the ballot initiative and provided highlights on the proposed sports complex and potential performing arts center.  Dr. Loden answered Council’s questions on the bond issues. Loden stated that if all ballot measures pass, bonds would be issued, and the projects would be completed within three (3) years.  Dr. Loden thanked Council for allowing them to address Council.  Council thanked the group for the information.     

Ordinances:

Bill #2019-023

Authorizing the Mayor to Sign a Contract with Syndeo Solutions for Telephone, Internet and Server back-up Services was presented. Barker made a motion to approve Bill #2019-023 on first reading and pass to second with Peterson seconding. Lucas Waldren, Systems Network Technician explained this contract would save money by allowing us to bundle the contract with Pitt Technology for phone, internet and server back up.  When asked, Waldren stated Nixa is in the 95% because KAMO covers fiber.  Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a vote on the motion and all Council members voted aye.  Bill # 2019-023 was presented for final reading.  Ledbetter made a motion to approve Bill #2019-023 on final reading and pass into law with Graham seconding and, Peterson, Graham, Barker, Orf and Ledbetter voting aye on roll call vote.

Bill #2019-024

Repealing Chapter 4-Alcoholic Beverages, Article III-Original Package Sales, Section 4-99-Drive-through Original Package Sales was presented. Barker made a motion to approve Bill #2019-024 on first reading and pass to second with Orf seconding. City Administrator Jimmy Liles said that during the last Council meeting, a discussion was held on allowing drive-through liquor sales so that businesses could provide a pick-up type service for groceries and alcohol. Our current ordinance does not allow this type of sales. City Attorney Tim Ricker recommended repealing the ordinance should Council want to allow for drive-through original package sales. Council asked Chief Joe Campbell for his thoughts.  Campbell stated he did not see an issue moving forward.  He believes proper training for employees bringing out the groceries and liquor is needed and stressed the need to educate the retail employees.  Mayor Steele asked for Chris Russell, Nixa Area Chamber, to speak on the matter.  Russell said online grocery sales and pick-up is a positive thing and would help with economic development.  Russell said the Chamber fully supports this issue.  Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments. Zach Marsden, 916 Wesley Rd., spoke in opposition of the repeal.  Marsden voiced concerns with economic and community matters.  Marsden is concerned the smaller business will miss out.  Marsden also voiced concerns with the age of the people bringing out packaged liquor to the car. Marsden also had concerns with allowing people the ability of driving-through to pick up liquor rather than having to get out of the car and walking in to the store to purchase liquor.  Marsden is afraid that DUIs may increase.  Marsden believes extensive education would be needed to look for proper identification and look for signs of sobriety.  The ease of obtaining alcohol with those that have alcohol-related issues was also a concern.  Marsden asked Council to consider looking into this matter more extensively before moving forward.  Liles indicated he had Campbell ask other communities of any issues they’ve seen with offering this service.  Campbell reported he had reached out to Ozark and they have had no issues with this service.  Kipp Easley, Nixa Walmart manager, said Ozark and the Springfield location on Independence both offer this service.  Easley reviewed the checkpoints they have in place to eliminate the chance of selling to underage or intoxicated person.  Easley explained that Walmart does not want to run the risk of losing their liquor license and will go to great lengths to educate their employees and have safety measures in place.  Russell again spoke in favor of the online grocery service allowing pick-up service. No further comments were made, and the hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a vote on the motion and Barker, Orf, Ledbetter and Peterson voted aye with Graham voting no.  Bill # 2019-024 was presented for final reading.  Barker made a motion to approve Bill #2019-024 on final reading and pass into law with Orf seconding and Graham voting no on roll call vote. Barker, Orf, Ledbetter and Peterson voted aye on roll call vote. Bill #201-024 passed by majority vote.

Bill #2019-025

Allocating 2018 End of Year Unexpended General Fund Revenue to the “Economic Development Fund Balance” was presented. Peterson made a motion to approve Bill #2019-025 on first reading and pass to second with Graham seconding. Finance Director Donna Swatzell explained the ordinance earmarks funds for economic development.  As requested, this restricted fund sets aside $450,000.00 from unexpended revenue from the 2018 budget.  Swatzell reported the General Fund’s projected year-end balance for unrestricted funds is now $1,203,266.00. Liles added he would like to see guideline put into place for this fund.  Council mentioned concerns from small business owners.  Chris Russell said small business owner’s have plans to attend an upcoming Council meeting to voice their concerns.   Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a vote on the motion and all Council members voted aye.  Bill# 2019-025 was presented for final reading.  Peterson made a motion to approve Bill #2019-025 on final reading and pass into law with Orf seconding and Barker, Orf, Ledbetter, Peterson and Graham voting aye on roll call vote.

Bill #2019-026

Rezoning the Village at Wicklow Phase 5 and Phase 6 from NC (neighborhood commercial) to R1 (single-family) was presented. Peterson made a motion to approve Bill #2019-026 on first reading and pass to second with Graham seconding. Nixa Planning and Development Director Travis Cossey explained this is part one (1) of a two (2) part application.  Cossey said Mr. Pat O’Reilly submitted a request for the rezoning and reconfiguration of two (2) parts of the Villages at Wicklow Phase 5 and 6.  These areas are in the northeast and southeast corners of Tracker and Old Castle Road.  Cossey will also be presenting an amendment to the preliminary plat later in the agenda.  Cossey provided a historical overview of the property and the zoning.  Cossey explained this rezoning reduces NC zoning to allow for R1 homes on a 1.58-acre parcel of land.   Cossey stated the applicant provided market analysis to provide justification in the zoning change.  Planning and Zoning Commission recommends approval of the rezoning request.    Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a vote on the motion and all Council members voted aye.  Bill# 2019-026 was presented for final reading.  Barker made a motion to approve Bill #2019-026 on final reading and pass into law with Orf seconding and Orf, Ledbetter, Peterson, Graham and Barker voting aye on roll call vote.

Resolutions:

Resolutions #2019-021

Adopting the Revised City of Nixa Personnel Handbook was presented. Ledbetter made a motion to postpone this resolution until the March 11th meeting to allow for further discussion.  Graham seconded the motion and all Council members voted aye.  The resolution was postponed.  

Resolution #2019-023

Adopting the Revised City of Nixa Utility Billing Department Collection Policy Statement and Procedures was presented. Swatzell said the proposed collection policy shows the recommended change for the acceptance of credit, debit and virtual card payments.  The change limits transactions to $1,000.00 along with a limit of five (5) uses per card per month.   Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the public hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a motion. Orf made a motion to approve Resolution #2019-023 with Peterson seconding and all Council members voting aye.

Bill #2019-024

Adopting the Nixa Utility Billing Department Water and Sewer Usage Adjustment Policy was presented. Swatzell said the proposed adjustment policy would provide credits to water and sewer charges due to water leaks or vandalism.  These adjustments would be limited to one (1) time in a twelve (12) month period after proof of repair was provided. Swatzell stated it would not change the residents’ sewer average.  Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the public hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a motion. Barker made a motion to approve Resolution #2019-024 with Orf seconding and all Council members voting aye.

Bill #2019-025

Approving the Statutory Compliance for Voluntary Annexation of 0.54 acres of Land Located at 1282 West Westside Road in Southwest Nixa was presented. Cossey reported that Mr. Jeffrey Hall purchased a 0.54-acre tract of land that contains a 50’X100” metal building.  The owner would like to open a lawn care facility and is wanting access to Nixa’s water service.  The property owner is requesting the property be annexed with an M-1(manufacturing) zoning.  Cossey reminded Council this resolution only finds the property in conformance and does not annex the property.   Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the public hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a motion. Barker made a motion to approve Resolution #2019-025 with Peterson seconding and all Council members voting aye.

Bill #2019-026

Approving the Amended Preliminary Plat for the Village at Wicklow Phase 5 and Phase 6 was presented. Cossey said this the second part of the two (2) part application discussed earlier.  This amended preliminary plat for Village at Wicklow Phase 5 and Phase 6 shows a new layout and increases the size of R1 lots in Phase 6, reducing the number of lots from one hundred-three (103) down to thirty-eight (38).  This will be a gated community with private streets.  Phase 5 reduces the size and shape of the NC lot reducing the number of lots from three (3) to one (1).  Cossey explained that emergency personnel will have access to a key to the Knox box for access to the gated community in case of an emergency.  Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the public hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a motion. Graham made a motion to approve Resolution #2019-026 with Peterson seconding and all Council members voting aye.

Bill #2019-027

Authorizing the Application and/or Acceptance of Non-Matching Grants from the Missouri Department of Transportation Division of Highway Safety for the Funding of 2019 Traffic Safety Programs was presented. Campbell addressed Council with a request to approve the annual resolution to allow for the department to apply for MoDOT DWI and HMV grants and mini-grants.  Mayor Steele opened the public hearing for comments, no comments were made, and the public hearing was closed.  Mayor Steele called for a motion. Barker made a motion to approve Resolution #2019-027 with Orf seconding and all Council members voting aye.

Discussion Items:

New Business Items:

Prior to the next topic of discussion, Mayor Steele recused himself from the discussion. 

Cossey presented information and proposed regulations establishing a façade grant program for the downtown area.  Cossey said he has been working with City Attorney Tim Ricker on the regulations and guidelines.  Ricker stated that funding for this program will have to come from the General Fund.  When asked if governmental entities were eligible, Ricker said more research would need to be completed if they wanted to prohibit taxing districts such as the school, etc.  Cossey explained the façade grant program establishes a 1/1 matching grant.  Council discussed regulations, funding and number of grants to provide.  Liles explained that $15,000.00 was budgeted for community betterment.  Cossey said the proposed grant is for up to $7,500.00.  Council discussed the possibility of moving funds from the economic development fund for the façade grant program with a suggested amount of $7,500.00 maximum amount of grant and $15,000.00 coming from the Economic Development Fund.  Cossey explained a rolling application date will apply and no application fee will be charged.  After deliberation, Council gave direction to move forward with finalizing the application and bringing back an ordinance for consideration.

Mayor Steele rejoined the meeting. 

Water Quality Superintendent Milton Dickensheet provided information on a transfer of capital improvement funds within the department.  Dickensheet explained the cost for the RAS/WAS Pump for the Wastewater Treatment Plant was $149,172.00 with a budgeted amount of $130,000.00.  However, there were unused funds available to cover the remaining costs.  Dickensheet asked to transfer $19,192.00 from the CIP-System Improvement fund to the Capital Improvement Program-Equipment fund.  Council agreed with the transfer.

Mayor and Council Member Reports:

Liles asked Council to provide names for the Home Rule Charter Review Committee.

Executive Session:

At 9:13 p.m., Peterson made a motion to move to executive session pursuant to RSMo 610.021.3-Personnel with Graham seconding and Ledbetter, Peterson, Graham, Barker and Orf voting aye on roll call vote.

Council returned to regular session at 9:59 p.m.

Adjourn:

At 10:00 p.m., Graham made a motion to adjourn with Orf seconding and all Council members voting aye.