Special council meetings requested by the public will now cost a minimum of $400 plus publication costs payable by the requesting business owner.
Council member Rich Madison said looking at special council meetings going back four years revealed that six of the 14 meetings called were for one category.
“The reoccurring problem is one that is entirely upon the owners of those businesses,” Madison said. “This is creating quite a problem when those events come. In one case, we had a business owner that was chewing out city hall when the fault was theirs to begin with.”
A survey of surrounding areas showed it is typical for communities to charge businesses for these requests. DeWitt Director of Finance Deanna Rekemeyer said the Dewitt City Council requires businesses to pay all fees relating to the meeting before it takes place.
“We do not feel it is our need to meet because they have failed to comply with necessary time table,” she said.
The council voted to charge $200 per meeting to cover the required council members to attend, $100 per city employee required to attend, $100 administrative fee plus publication costs.
“They would have the option of either paying that or waiting til the next council meeting,” Madison said.
Wayne Pantini gave a status report on the Union County Development Association Roundhouse building before the council approved the certificate of completion as required by the development agreement between UCDA and the City of Creston.
Pantini reported the total project cost was $682,657. UCDA raised $484,287 towards the project. The remaining money is being financed and raised. The project revenue through grants and contributions still has $141,000 remaining that will be received over the next several years, including the development agreement with the city.
A public hearing will be held 6 p.m. Nov. 19 to discuss an easement request from Jesse Giza to gravel and use 30 feet of city owned property along 1739 Commerce Rd. as parking for his construction business.
In other council business:
• a motion was approved for temporary street closing for the 2019 lighted Christmas parade 6 p.m. until the end of the parade Dec. 5
• a motion was approved to place three handicapped parking spaces on Freemont Street by St. John’s Church, 601 S. Maple St.