Illness reduced the ranks in City Hall
council chambers. Some committee reports bounced three times before
hitting on someone present, but the six remaining council members
sorted through a variety of issues by night's end. Out were Aldermen
Marty Neitzel, Dave Armbrust, Benny Huskins and Patrick Madigan.
Finance chairman Verl Prather
announced the start of the budget for the next fiscal year. Budget
hearings will begin on March 19 at 8 a.m. City department heads will
be contacted and asked to submit their budget for the May 1, 2005,
through April 30, 2006, fiscal year.
A petition to make a one-block,
one-way street at Washington-Monroe School will be on next week's
Monday agenda. A string of discussion occurred between aldermen,
Mayor Beth Davis, Police Chief Bob Rawlins and Streets
Superintendent Tracy Jackson on their knowledge of the problem.
When school lets out each day there
are some parents who will double park in the street, holding other
vehicles up, or turn around in very little space. In addition to
creating traffic congestion, it also causes a potential hazard to
The school has made a number of
efforts to alleviate the problem, recommending a one-way traffic
pattern to pick up students and asking parents not to double park.
It worked for a while, Jackson said, but then it went back to the
way it was.
Alderman Shelton, who lives right by
there, has been caught in traffic there as parents will get out of
their car and run around to get their child into the car,
frustrating him and other drivers. He chuckled and said, "And then
they smile and wave at me."
The general consensus was that it is
not favorable to make one block one-way. Rather than change, an
attempt will be made to get parents to be more cooperative. The
police will begin issuing warnings or tickets for double parking and
other traffic violations.
No parents or school representatives
were present to contribute to the discussion. There was a school
meeting at the same time.
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An economic development incentive
package is being prepared to offer for use by the economic
development partnership. In the package it will offer up to $600,000
in funding for a project that offers no less than 150 jobs. The
funding is being set aside at this time with the intent that it will
be there to help expedite any solid business venture that wishes to
come locate here. It will be used as needed to cover costs such as
infrastructure or sewers to a site. It will be voted on at the next
meeting, on Monday, March 7.
City attorney Bill Bates updated the council on an ongoing
five-year-old legal matter in which Lincoln is named as one of many
municipalities. The suit is a telecommunications matter involving
U.S. Cellular, PrimeCo, wireless and land lines. Bates recommends
that Lincoln stay in with the group of other communities named, even
though there may be some legal fees cost that may have to be paid.
It could protect us from a larger cost down the way. The fee is now
What is believed to be the last
standing local one-room schoolhouse and a privy have been offered to
the city, Mayor Beth Davis said. Alderman Derrick Crane will work
with the city beautification committee and will try to find funds to
move the structures to Postville Park.
The city has been dealing with
insurance coverage issues. Alderman Marty Neitzel was contacted a
couple of months ago with the information that not only would rates
be going up, but some policies that city employees have are no
longer being offered. The timing of the changes as offered by Blue
Cross Blue Shield conflicted with union contracts.
It was decided a couple of weeks ago
at an insurance committee meeting to address the insurance company
about extending the coverage of those policies to meet the union
Information that includes alternate
plans and rates has arrived. Alderman Neitzel will be discussing the
new information with the city's insurance consultant.
Alderman Crane will be bringing the
doughnuts for the budget meeting.