These minutes remain unofficial until approved by the council at the next meeting.
Submitted by Clerk/Treasurer
The Town of Chester Council held the Regular Scheduled Council meeting on March 9, 2022 at 6:00 pm.
Members Present: Mayor James Dahlen Council Persons, Wendy Dauwalder, Rachel Ghekiere, Sonja Dahlen, Scott Ross, and Tina Neer
Members Absent: Shane Kenfield
Staff Present: Terry Tyler (PWD)
Ashley Wickum (Clerk/Treasurer)
- Mayor James Dahlen called the regular meeting to order at 6:01 pm
- Scott Ross made the motion to approve the minutes of all three meetings, the Public Hearing Water PER meeting, the Public Hearing Wastewater PER meeting, and the Regular council meeting February 9, 2022. Wendy Dauwalder seconded the motion. Motion to approve minutes passed with all voting ayes.
- Claims were presented to the council for approval. Rachel Ghekeire made the motion to approve the claims submitted for payment. Sonja Dahlen seconded the motion. Motion to approve claims passed with all voting ayes.
- The council reviewed the adjustments and journal entries made in February. Tina Neer made the motion to approve the JV & Adjustments. Rachel Ghekiere seconded the motion. Motion passed with all voting ayes.
- Public Comment: None
- Sheriff’s Office Report: was emailed to the council members.
- New Business:
- New Hires: interviews and wages:
Pool Manager: The town received one application for the Pool Manager position. Kelli Nelson reapplied for the position. She has shown great initiative with identifying areas to begin working on at the pool and wanting to fulfill her commitment of the two-year certification. She was also present when Terry and Ashley met with Brad Kantorowicz regarding the swim meet and swim lessons dates, even knowing that she hadn’t been hired yet. Discussion about a raise. Scott Ross suggested to keep wage at $16 and see how the season progresses and then look at a raise. Sonja Dahlen felt that $16 was a high wage to begin with. Wendy Dauwalder made the motion to hire Kelli Nelson as the Pool Manager, and keep her wage at $16.00/hr. Sonja Dahlen seconded the motion. Motion passed with all voting ayes.
Operator: The town received two applications for the operator position, however one applicant pulled his application. The current application is David Lindsey. Terry Tyler wanted it to be known that this is his brother-in-law. Discussion of the application, shows no CDL, but experience in equipment and mechanics and self employed for the past 30 years. David is willing to provide a more detailed list of qualifications and to travel to Montana for an in-person interview if needed. Sonja Dahlen suggested starting with a phone/zoom interview and then do a second in person interview after that. Council thought this was a good idea. Ashley will set up a first interview with David for after 6:00 pm. No wages were discussed.
- Capital Improvement Plan- Ashley updated the council that since March of 2018 Bear Paw Development has said they would help the Town of Chester update the Capital Improvement Plan. However, this week when she reached out again about updating the plan, she received an email back stating that Bear Paw Development is not doing CIPs for any communities. Discussion about items to include in the capital improvement plan including water, sewer, garbage, pest, streets, park, pool, and general funds. Ashley will ask Chris Hayes with RPA about cost of updating the CIP.
- BaRSAA Fund Planning- discussion about how to utilize the funds this year. Options include doing more valley gutters and town wide street maintenance, or the possibility of rolling it over for a larger chip seal project. There has not been a chip seal project since 2015. In the past it has been done as a big project all at once for chip seal. Terry can look and see what area’s were included in the last project and what areas need to be done. Funds can be requested and utilized for general street maintenance and unused funds rolled over at reporting time for chip seal project if needed. A resolution will need to be done in April so funds can be requested.
- Tower Maintenance Plan- Ashley provide the council with a detailed sheet of maintenance costs that the town has paid on the towers and water plant. Council discussed the tower maintenance plan from Maguire Iron. The new tower needs to be painted, and this could be a CIP item. The reports from the last tower cleaning by Inland Potable showed that the towers looked good and are planned to be cleaned again in about 5 years. The maintenance plan appears to be more than the Town needs. Maguire Iron does offer a payment plan and the town could save $3,000 by going with the 3-year payment plan. Terry updated the council that the Scada program at the water treatment plant needs to be updated very soon. This is part of the water project PER, however it may not last that long. Terry has talked with MET who services the Scada program, and it is a must. Terry has also talked to RPA about doing up grades without doing the entire water plant, and this will be looked into. Scott Ross made a motion to have Maguire Iron paint the new tower and use their 3-year payment plan. Tina Neer seconded the motion. Motion passed with all voting ayes.
- Old Business: None
- Mayor Report/ Additional Agenda Items: None
- PWD update: Terry Tyler updated the council that he met with Chad & Megan Hedges about the City Park splash park. They are going to have a plan drawn up for the park, and Terry has also spoken to the Garden Club members so everyone is involved and Chad & Megan will be working with the Community Development Committee and working on fundraiser ideas for these upgrades.
They are working on cleaning the filters at the water treatment plant, all of the equipment has been serviced except for the street sweeper as they are waiting on parts for it and will have it ready for the spring. They also think they have the water truck fixed. Terry will be going to Rural Water the 23-25 and is looking forward to meeting the vendors. Rural Water is having a “best tasting water” competition and the winner gets the opportunity to go to Washington DC to discuss funding. Terry is going to enter a sample of the Town’s water.
- Clerk update: Ashley Wickum updated the council on items for the April agenda. These items include approval of Insurance plan, Pool Agreement, BaRSSA Resolution and Lions Park MOU. There will also be two extra meetings before the April meeting for the 2nd public hearings for the water and wastewater PER’s. One at 5 and one at 5:30. Ashley updated the council that the AFR is still not done, and the Auditor’s know this, the Audit is still planned for April 25th. Budget Amendments will need to be done at the May meeting.
- Council: None
- Rachel Ghekiere made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Tina Neer seconded. Meeting was adjourned at 7:39 pm.
Submitted by_______________________ Approved by_________________________ Clerk Mayor