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home : news : news Saturday, April 30, 2016

11/9/2013 Email this articlePrint this article 
DeWitt hires technician to map city infrastructure
The city of DeWitt is moving ahead with its plans to create a digital mapping system that eventually will include all of the city's infrastructure, including what is buried beneath the ground.

To that end, the council Monday, Nov. 4, approved the appointment of Lynne DeHaan as a GIS/I&I (geographic information system/inflow and infiltration) technician on a part-time basis.

DeHaan, who has a masters degree in GIS resource analysis and nearly 10 years of experience in mapping and the GIS field, will work 16-24 hours per week at a rate of $17 per hour, which will increase to $17.50 following a successful six-month probationary period.

Her first task will be to analyze information that has been gathered from smoke testing and sewer televising to mitigate inflow and infiltration issues.

Grant applications

The council approved two grant applications to the Clinton County Emergency Management grant program.

The first is a police department application that would help pay for mobile command boards. The city's match for the $1,941.75 grant would be $647.25. Command boards are the organizational management tools used as an on-site command center during an emergency.

The second application is for $11,224.79 to help pay for a utility vehicle (gator). The city's match would be $3,741.60. The vehicle is safer and more useful than the 4-wheeler it would replace and can be used for a number of purposes, including access to trails and parks, parades and races and as a potential search vehicle for missing persons. Matching funds would be budgeted for next fiscal year.

Hotel motel tax

An oversight following an election in 2006 resulted in the 2 percent increase in the city's hotel motel tax that was approved by the voters not being imposed in January 2007.

City staff recently discovered the canvas of votes was not forwarded to the Iowa Department of Management and a required ordinance was not brought to the council. The matter was rectified Monday night.

The state code required 50 percent of the proceeds from the tax be dedicated to recreation, cultural and entertainment-type purposes. The remainder is more flexible, but typically, it has been used for similar purposes.

Disorderly house

At the request of police chief Dave Porter, the council discussed drafting an ordinance that would improve the department's ability to control houses that are host to repetitive, problematic activities, including drinking illegal substance possession or sales, gambling in violation of the state code and acts of prostitution, pimping or pandering, for example

It mirrors the crime-free multi-housing program that is in place in larger cities, Porter said, and gives the police the ability to deal with landlords whose tenants are a problem.

The council directed Lindner to bring a proposed ordinance back to them.

Other business

In other business Nov. 4, the council:

•Approved forgivable loan mortgage releases for Andrew Adams and Linda Morrison. Each participated in the 2003 city housing rehabilitation program and has met the terms of the loans.

•Approved change order No. 1 for the Sixth Avenue reconstruction project, which now is complete. The $1,350 change order represents the purchase and distribution of additional topsoil need in the boulevard area in some parts of the project.

•Authorized reserve police officers Lee Penningroth, Jamie Stearns, Dan Edwards, Ryan Edwards, Devin Wagner and Wade Glahn to carry tasers while on duty. All have received and passed the required training.

•Approved an agreement with Flenker Land Architecture Consultants of Long Grove for wetland delineation services in the amount of $3,850. The delineation is required by the Army Corps of Engineers for the Skeffington Trail bridge replacement project at Westbrook Park, leading city administrator Steve Lindner to observe, "Nothing is easy about this project."

•Approved an adjustment to the cemetery budget to replace a toilet and repair the clutch on a tractor. A request for funds to plow and reseed about 4.5 acres of overgrown prairie at the cemetery was deferred

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