On the agenda were regular items regarding the new fiscal year. A hearing was held before the meeting to provide public opportunity for discussion of the tax levy. No comments from the public were heard.
A request was heard during public comments by a representative from a soccer league in Kearney which needed a place to practice. The board approved the request pending cooperation with the Parks Department, and in view of the presence of insurance through a national soccer organization.
The Mayor’s report:
The approval of other miscellaneous business was without much discussion, as was the passage of an ordinance adopting a procedure for disclosing conflicts of interest for some municipal officials.
A request to use portions of the city for the homecoming parade by Odessa High School was heard and approved by the board. Additional comments by Mayor Couch regarding unruly traffic in places during past parades was addressed by Chief Newhouse. He gave assurance that additional resources would be deployed at those areas.
Another request was made by Lafayette County Habitat for Humanity to waive or reduce city fees for the construction of a residence. A representative for Habitat stated fees in other cities were usually around $800. Odessa’s fees would total more than $5,000. The board tabled the issue until more information about the real cost of city services could be collected.
A presentation by the Economic Development Council announced a campaign to educate about the virtues of buying locally. The “Shop Local” campaign will use flyers, educational videos and other methods. The presentation also included a request for permission to use the city logo in conjunction with those of the Chamber of Commerce and EDC. The Board not only approved use of the logo, but also matched funding by the Chamber of Commerce for the project.
A bill ending certain training and duties for some city staff was passed. A contract was authorized with a third-party medical claims billing service that would take over those duties. In previous meetings, it was determined that the overall cost for the city would be reduced by entering into the contract.
Engineering firm Larkin Lamp Rynearson was also authorized to order a filtration system for the southeast water treatment facility.
The City Administrator’s report: