The Regular meeting of the Carthage City Council was held March 23rd, 2010, at City Hall, 538 Wabash Avenue. Mayor Nightingale called the meeting to order at 8:00 PM.  Answering to roll call were Aldermen Campbell, G. Smith, Fleming, B. Smith, Neally and Walker. Treasurer Lunt was absent. 


Motion was made by Alderman Walker, seconded by Fleming to approve the March 9th meeting minutes. All six Aldermen answered “aye” in approval of the motion; none were opposed.


Mayor Nightingale reported that the paperwork had arrived from IDOT for the E. Wabash Street overlay project. This basically “guarantees” the $200,000 grant. The City is budgeting the additional $120,000 for the project from Capital Improvement funds. PSBA has started the surveying work. They will also include the City block between Main and Walnut on Washington Street.


There are several delinquent properties with reported complaints. Attorney Tucker discussed the protocol for demolition of properties. A motion to file demolition action will be placed on the agenda for the next Council meeting. Included are 730 Walnut, 725 Main, 320 S. Marion, 628 Wabash, 413 Locust, and the house directly north of the Ayerco Station on N. Madison.


Budgetary numbers have arrived from Patrick Engineering for the landfill. Mayor Nightingale reported that he would be talking with them further on the estimates for the downshoot project and washout repair project.


Alderman Walker reported that the County had requested financial assistance from the City to aid in the cost of E-Cycling at the County Garage.


Motion was made by Alderman Walker, seconded by B. Smith to give $500.00 to WIRC for such project support. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.


City employee salaries for the next fiscal year have been discussed and the figures will be used for purposes of budget discussion, but will be placed on the agenda for vote at the next meeting.


Clerk Graham presented the current water and sewer pricing and the proposed pricing for budget planning purposes. Currently the Water department expenses continue to exceed revenues. The old water plant requires more and more repair, and costs of operation continue to climb.


Currently 50% of the City receives the “minimum” water and sewer bill. This indicates that persons using small amounts of water are actually paying for water they do not use. Suggested changes would include a drop in the minimum volumes from 2200gal. /mo to 1100 gal. /mo. Once the 1100 gallons had been exceeded pricing would change from $5.01 to $5.50/1000 gallons of water for the residential customer. Similar increases for all water and sewer charges would also apply.


The minimum combined water and sewer bill is currently $42.00 every other month. The proposal includes a change to monthly billing at $22.50. Half the City would be billed on the first of the month, and the other half on the 15th. Ten days after the bill has been issued a proposed 10% penalty would be added. Failure to pay by the 30th of the month would result in a disconnect of service.


The proposed changes should aid the customer in an easier to budget monthly bill as well as improve the City’s cash flow.


Motion was made by Alderman G. Smith, seconded by Fleming by approve the MFT resolution for $94,500. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.


Alderman G. Smith outlined the Concrete bids from Ideal vs. Great River. Ideal had the lower bid in all categories. Motion was made by Alderman G. Smith, seconded by B. Smith to approve the following prices from Ideal for concrete next fiscal year: 4000 PSI Ready mix $88.00/cubic yd., SI mix $91.00/cu. Yd., Fiber mesh $6.50/cu.yd. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.


During the visit from Area Disposal, the representative indicated that the company would provide the containers if the City were willing to take the responsibility for them and place them on City property. Abuse of the recycling service with trash contamination resulted in their removal from the Company property.


Following discussion, the Council determined that citizens had access to recycling at the curbside and only that service would be provided.


Alderman G. Smith reported that the Hancock Co. Township had overturned a truck a few weeks ago and the Fire Department responded to the call. Smith reported that no service was really needed or conducted, therefore, motion was made by G. Smith, seconded by B. Smith to waive the fee from the Fire department for this call. All six Aldermen voted “yes”.


Alderman G. Smith reported that the Public Works committee was evaluating the current policy on bonds for digging. Currently $200.00 is bonded for up to two years for potential street repair. This is no longer adequate to cover costs. More investigation from surrounding communities will be needed on this issue.


A legislative meeting will be held next Tuesday, March 30 at 6:30 PM.


Motion to adjourn at 9:05PM.



Katherine Graham, City Clerk