The Regular Meeting of the Carthage City Council was held in City Hall at 308 Walnut Street, November 28th, 2006. Mayor Nightingale called the meeting to order at 8:00PM. Answering to roll call were Aldermen Campbell, Smith, Fleming, Bentzinger, Neally and Walker. Treasurer Lunt was absent.


Motion was made by Alderman Walker, seconded by Fleming to approve the November 14th meeting minutes. All six Aldermen answered “aye”.


Kathy Brown from the Extension Center informed the Council of another forthcoming senior housing project to be located somewhere in the County. It is possible for Carthage to get another project. But it is contingent on a point system, like the pending housing project. If land could be donated that would be close to banks, grocery stores, etc., the community is awarded more points. The community with the highest score will be awarded the contract.  The entire county is in competition for this grant. It is possible for Carthage to receive the grant, but more likely that another community would be awarded this grant.


Mayor Nightingale reported that progress is being made on Carthage’s  HUD senior housing project to be located next to City Hall. An announcement from the West Central Illinois Area Agency on Agency will be forthcoming regarding the plans.


Clerk Graham read the Plan Commission meeting minutes of 11/22/06. Richard Van Zant is planning to rent the former Eads Jewelry Store on the square, for a radio station. This requires erecting a tower. The Plan Commission recommended approval of this, but there is a need for a zoning change.


Motion was made by Alderman Walker, seconded by Neally to approve the Plan Commissions recommendation. To erect the tower as quickly as possible, the Council included in this motion a variance be granted with plans to change the zoning ordinance for the next council meeting. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.


Suggestions were made to look at the entire ordinance, which also discusses an outdated issue with the location of older, large satellite dishes.


Ruth Comstock addressed the Council with the issue of burning leaves. The smoke causes her health problems and she is requesting a burning ban.


The Safety Committee will discuss different options for leaf disposal other than burning. There was discussion that by next fall something different should be decided. With the current low water levels at the lake, the idea of a burning ban is something that should be considered, with the concern for potential fires, regardless of the health concerns.


Brenda Pyatt, Economic Development Director, informed the Council of a notice being given to the schools for the local children to take to their parents, containing water saving suggestions.


Alderman Smith informed the Council of the Rescue Truck Box being modified and that it is back in service. The Fire Truck damaged in a recent fire is also back in service.


Alderman Smith stated that the College Cafeteria Building has had the south end removed, but it now exposes the dry wall. There is no protection to the outside elements and is not sealed to prevent animals from getting in. This is not satisfactory and these issues need to be addressed.


The Public Property meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 5th.  Mayor Nightingale will talk with Patrick Engineering before this meeting to discuss the landfill pump, which is not working properly.


It was reported that work has been being done on the old library building. Che Humphrey, one of the part time policemen, has removed all the old carpet from the main floor.


Motion was made by Alderman Walker, seconded by Fleming to approve the levy ordinance 2006-16 for 2006-07. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.


Motion was made by Alderman Walker, seconded by Smith to give the full time employees $100 in Carthage cash, and the part time people $25 for their Christmas Bonus. This is the same as last year. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.


Alderman Walker informed the Council of a community distribution of food baskets Dec. 16th. She encouraged the Council to help with this service. All interested persons should meet at the Baptist Church at 8:00 AM.


Alderman Fleming reported on the Public Works meeting just prior to this council session. The main topic was the status of the low water levels at the lake. Mayor Woodruff from Hamilton attended this meeting to discuss their city’s involvement.



Carthage is currently receiving 140-160,000 gallons of water from Hamilton daily. The system is set up to receive on a demand basis, so there is some fluctuation in amounts we can receive. With the current system this is the maximum amount we can obtain from them. Mayor Woodruff requested a commitment from Carthage in order to secure pricing.


Motion was made by Alderman Fleming, seconded by Neally to commit for six months to Hamilton for 140-160,000 gallons of water per day. Purchase price will be $3.30 per 1000 gallons. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.


This price is higher than we can currently produce water locally from the lake. This will require a water surcharge from the public to support this price increase. PSBA engineers calculated the new suggested rates. The sewer rates will not be affected.


Motion was made by Alderman Fleming, seconded by Walker to implement the following surcharge to the water billing beginning January 1st. All users will receive a $6.00 increase for the minimum 2200 gallons per month. For usage above the 2200 gallons/month, residential users will pay $6.70 per 1000 gallons, for large quantity users $7.60/1000 gallons, for outside city limits/residential $9.05/1000 gallons, and for outside city limits large users $9.85/1000 gallons. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.  


The surcharge will be evaluated after 6 billing cycles.


Darin Cohoy from a well drilling company in Iowa attended the Public Works meeting. He had spoken with Alderman Smith earlier in the week and submitted a quote for a shallow well. Charlie Bach from PSBA, indicated a deep well would be required for the volumes of water the City would need. This would substantially increase the costs. 


Mr. Bach is investigating other well drilling companies for this potential project.


Robbie Wolfe addressed the Public Works Committee. He wants to bulldoze trees located over the main sewer line. Alderman Fleming will look at the area on Saturday with Rich Sealock to suggest alternatives to bulldozing. The committee is concerned that damage could occur if bulldozing were allowed.


The street department is requesting permission to purchase a transit for $450.00 from Mike Grotts. The committee suggested the engineers evaluate it to determine its value.


Tim Rettman informed the Public Works committee of a collapsed sewer at his rental house on Buchanan. The sewer runs under the highway and the state will not allow the road to be torn up. He had consulted with a dozen plumbers and none wanted to address the issue with it under the road. Our current policy is to cap the sewer at the main. He asked for permission to cap the sewer at the curb. The committee granted this request. 


Bud Wear informed the committee of work on the Catholic Church sewer and water lines. They requested the sump pump be routed under ground to the storm drain versus draining onto the highway, which it currently does. The committee thought that would be a good improvement.


Motion was made to adjourn by Alderman Walker at 9:20 PM.



Katherine Graham

City Clerk