Deputy Clerk Kathy LeBlanc met with staff of CA League of Cities, of which Loyalton is not a member, but reported the “benefit of oodles of grant money.” She told of an SB2 grant which provides $25,000 - $150,000 for updating the general plan with a deadline in November, another grant benefitting low income housing and stated there’s “Money out there.” The City is within their jurisdiction and it offers programs and help for no cost. Rather than wait to join, Mayor Sarah Jackson made the move administratively and stated, “Action taken!” Council member Joy Markum said she’s used the League 5-6 times. “They’re wonderful and well informed,” she said.
Under Public Comment, Eileen Benson wondered about cleanup on the far end of Third Street, questioning enforcement. Councilman Brooks Mitchell stated letters had been sent and they have 60 days. Other question, Brooks said it was private property and added 608 Cedar complaints.
On the east side of the post office where it is not blocked off, Brooks reported it’s private property and the post office won’t pay for two parking lots.
Assistant Fire Chief Robert DeMartini said there have been 101 calls as of that day. He appreciated the help on the Zollinger Street structure fire and stated there was no Cal Fire investigation. They will notify the homeowner to clean it as it is a hazard and eyesore. He called the former trailer park “a terrible mess,” and called all the overgrown vegetation “danger on our hands.”
Robert defended fire response time, stating, “In over 48 years, I’ve yet to receive a pay check.”
Robert thanked the Boy Scouts who donated the new California and U,S. flags to the fire department and thanked the Council for sending clean up letters.
Leak detection testing at the sewer ponds was performed May 20-23 and did not generate conclusive results at a cost of around $20,000, halted ad saved with a change order/amendment to add $16,000. Alexa Kinsinger, E.I.T, Project Designer and Lucas Tipton, P.E., Principal Engineer reported alternatives and a State site visit and progress report have to be approved. The Council approved an alternative when the pond level is below outlet pipes to perform leak detection and to run pressure tests on each leak area.
The Council approved a fire department door renovation not to exceed $9,000.
A temporary maintenance worker for three to six months was approved after much discussion. Brooks Mitchell told of five stop signs upside down and falling behind on weed maintenance and lawn mowing. The position would pay $14/hour week ends for 20 hours/week. Joy Markum was in favor of paneling on the Social Hall which “needs to happen.” Brooks said there would be a clear job description. There was deep discussion over the two maintenance people having to be at the sewer plant for safety and Nancy addressed weed control at the ponds. Audience members were disheartened with what seems “no self motivation,” with workers. The City yard was called “a mess.” Nancy stated workers go to work at 7:30 a.m., make rounds, take samples, make quarterlies and start pumps for rancher, Einen Grandi. Brooks made the motion the position not exceed $7,500 and Joy Markum voted no.
It was agreed maintenance worker Keith Jordan could respond to wildland fires within the service area as response takes out a sewer worker. The Council would .not support him going out of the service area.
The Council budgeted and approved $2,500 for the County to paint streets in the area of schools and nursing.
The City met with CA Rural Waters Association over lights in City buildings and sewer plant with a recommendation of $1,500 to retrofit lights and save $3,000/year. Cost is for equipment only, no labor.
Mayor Jackson reported on the 2017-18 Draft Audit with 14 findings, “all recommendations are procedural; no fraudulent action; no missing funds.” Brooks called it a “work in progress.”
Concerning the Grand Jury report, bookkeeper Tracy Smith stated they “never asked me anything.” She was never interviewed. Brooks said Grand Jury had taken records for six months and it was then agreed, “No City records leave.” Brooks felt the City was in its “best financial shape in about 20 years.” It was approved to send a limited, positive response.