The Regular meeting of the Carthage City Council was held in City Hall, located at 538 Wabash Avenue, on February 26, 2008. Mayor Nightingale called the meeting to order at 8:00PM. Answering to roll call were Aldermen, Smith, Fleming, Bentzinger, Neally, Walker and Treasurer Lunt. Alderman Campbell was absent due to illness.


Motion was made by Alderman Walker, seconded by Fleming to approve the February 12th meeting minutes. All five Aldermen voted “yes”.


Mayor Nightingale and the Council recognized Howard Perry who was representing the Kibbe Museum board. He presented a proposed plan for an addition tying the existing museum building to the old City Hall building. With this new addition a drainage system will need to be placed to deal with the run off. The bid has already been awarded from the Council at a prior meeting.


The addition will be paid for from the Museum’s money they have received from donations. No taxpayer dollars will be used for this addition.


The existing buildings need some maintenance as well while they are adding this addition including a new roof for the museum, soffits and gutters.


Motion was made by Alderman Walker; seconded by Smith to allow the Museum to proceed with building this addition with their money, and the City will pay for materials to maintain the existing buildings. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.


The Council then recognized John Faulhaber, CPA to present the 2006-07 audit findings. He will provide further details to the Finance Committee at their next meeting on March 10th. 


He presented financial data comparing the last five years. It showed the revenues of the City have been reasonably flat for the last five years while the expenses have been significantly more. It was apparent the majority of expense has been the landfill, leaving the City with little reserve in the General Fund.


Mayor Nightingale reported that the Senior Housing is proceeding despite the weather conditions. Samples of the exterior materials were passed around the Council, including the brick, siding and roofing.


The grant for the Water and Sewer line for the Proposed Memorial Hospital is in Washington, DC, and hoped to be approved by April.


Mayor Nightingale reminded the Council that budget requests for all departments were due March 14th.


He also reported that meetings were continuing on the Methode status. The next one is going to be March 6th at the Marine Bank.


Motion was made by Alderman Walker, seconded by Fleming to pass the proclamation recognizing John Huston as the Kiwanis Citizen of the Year. All five Aldermen responded with an “aye” approval. None opposed.


Clerk Graham reported that Ameren CIPS will remove 10 higher wattage streetlights this year and 10 next year. They will be replaced with lower wattage ones in order to save money on the streetlights. Though they won’t get replaced immediately, Ameren will bill the City as if they were.


Attorney Glidden reported that the 40 year Ameren franchise agreement has expired. There is no need for further action, since it is highly improbable that another electrical supplier would want to go to the expense of replacing poles, etc. in order to provide electricity to the community.


Motion was made by Alderman Walker seconded by Bentzinger to approve Ordinance 2007-12 Annexing into the City limits Memorial Hospital Association property at the new proposed site near Highway 336. All five Aldermen voted “yes”.


Glidden reported that he is working on the garbage contract and should have it completed in time for the committee meeting next Monday, March 3rd.


Alderman Smith reported the storm spotter meeting is scheduled for February 27th at 6:30 PM at the Fire Station. He also indicated that the tornado siren testing will begin the First Tuesday of the Month at 7:00PM, unless the weather is stormy. He does not want to alarm the community, if the weather is stormy and the siren is blown as a test. He will contact the paper and radio station in an attempt to notify all persons. The fire department will be reviewing their budget on March 6th.


The potential purchasing of trees, when to plant, and the budget for the Public Property Committee will be discussed at the meeting Monday, March 3rd. The landfill expenses for the upcoming fiscal year will also be a topic of discussion at that meeting.


The Finance committee will be meeting Monday March 10th and discuss the monthly water billing proposal, salaries for the next fiscal year, and “peddler” door to door salesmen fees and hours.


Alderman Fleming reported that the bid letting for the Water line to the hospital would be March 4th at 2:00PM. He also indicated that the Street Department would be filling potholes as soon as the weather permits. The freezing and thawing intervals this winter has made the pot hole problem worse than usual.


The Water Meter deposit will need to be discussed. New meters will increase to at least $136.00 each. The old meters are no longer going to be available, and when a meter needs to be replaced; this more expensive one will be used. 


The long-term goal of the City when they built the new water tower, was to be able to tear down the small, older tower and only utilize the large new tower. The estimates from PSBA to do this is $323,000.00 Estimates to paint and repair the smaller tower and continue utilizing it is $170,000.00 No action was taken at this time.


The costs to drill a test well were also presented. This test well could be utilized as a regular well when completed. This project entailed drilling the well to 1500 feet; costs would be less if adequate water were found at a shorter depth. If only one well was drilled, the water plant would need to continue to operate, since no backup would exist if problems were encountered. The costs for drilling the one well are $310,000.00 The costs to complete this project totaled $435,000


The costs for a Reverse Osmosis water treatment plant would be close to $3 million.  These projects were tabled pending more in depth discussions.


There was discussion about the back up of sewer into Helen White’s home. The insurance company refused payment to the City. It was determined that it was an unusual situation and that it was the City’s responsibility.


Motion was made by Alderman Fleming and seconded by Neally to pay for the damage done by the back up of sewer into the Helen White home, which was $2680.22 All five Aldermen voted ‘yes’.


Motion was made by Alderman Fleming, seconded by Bentzinger to allow the Street Department to spend $480.00 to repair their overhead door. All five Aldermen voted “yes”.


Motion was made to adjourn at 9:20 PM


Katherine Graham

City Clerk