January 30, 2009

Special Council Meeting, Budget Workshop

Posted in Agenda at 5:10 pm by thevoicesofstuart

Here is the agenda for the Budget Workshop on February 2nd.

Agenda, Budget Workshop


January 23, 2009

Dear Council Members,

Posted in City News at 2:36 am by thevoicesofstuart

A little something to think about.

By Curious


How do you think the budget meeting will go on Feb 2, 2009??

they surely cannot even be thinking of raises for any employees due to the state of these hard times for people. FREEZE !!!!!

I as a tax payer are tired of funding their full benefits, my husband has to pay for health care from his check, so why do this city employees not have to pay a dime? Times are tough and this city needs to tighten its belt and start cutting back. changing hours, cutting hours, or plain eliminating part time and contract employees.

it is hard to drive by the fire station and see all the city trucks and utility ones also, walking in the door at 10:00 am and then coming back by a half hour later or more and they are just leaving. all the places that i have worked in my life, your break was taken in the break room of your company. and no citizen paid fuel was used to go to break.

I read the stuart herald today and way to go John Crew!!! maybe this city needs to look into some of his idea’s. and I also agree about the city administrator living in this town. he cannot manage personnel from 60 miles away.

The town of Dexter received a grant for sidewalks for school, they have a food pantry. And if you read the article they did not even mention the town of stuart, the products came from Redfield, Dexter and Wiscotta. Way to go Dexter and good for you. Wonder how many Stuartites will use this?

I wonder how long it will take this city council to realize not all of us were born with a silver spoon in our mouths, and you cannot have it all. Something has to give, like a new pool! We need infrastructure like new sewers and plant, improve streets.



After attending the meetings for the last several years and watching the budget cycle unfold I expect that Mr. Ashour will pass out a copy of what he wants for funding.  They will ask him if the levels are adequate for city operations.  If they have a new pet project this is when they usually bring it up.  Other than that….it is pretty cut and dried.

Health insurance for city personnel is handled by the Utility Board as part of their contract negotiations and the city opts to carry all personnel under that plan since it locks in the coverage price for several years at a time.  Partial employee funding was discussed briefly a couple of years ago but since there was several years left on the existing coverage and would violate the Utility Board Employee Contract Agreement they decided it was best to not change anything.

Break times and locations are a leadership issue that rests squarely on the Mayor, City Administrator and Utilities Supervisor.  Perceptions are everything in a small town.

I have not seen the Herald this week but I do agree that several councils have not enforced the city code on residency for the city administrator.

I agree that going forward with the aquatic center at this time was a imprudent move on the part of the council.  But we can all look forward to the rate hike coming that will fund the shortfall for the new waste treatment plant, water/sanitary sewer lines needed to supply the new school and to fix the storm water problem on Harlan Street.  And lets not forget that this years street project is obligating half of the street budget for the next 10 years to cover that.  Again it all comes down to the council’s judgment in setting priorities.

January 12, 2009

January Council Meeting

Posted in Council Meetings at 11:28 pm by thevoicesofstuart

By Peggy Schlichter

Mr. Ashour is on vacation.

Midwest Partnership

Mr. Jason White and Mr. Eric Tiernan gave a brief recap on their economic  development efforts.  They explained that while the State is refocusing their efforts from enticement of new businesses to Iowa to helping existing businesses survive the economic downturn they are continuing to work with companies who have expressed an interest in locating some of their business here.  While no specifics were discussed they are working with one business from Germany.

Appointment of New Emergency Management Personnel

Robert Smith and Jeff Howard were appointed as the new primary and secondary Emergency Management Representatives for the city.

Division Street Project

Tabled until a  Supplemental Contract is signed.

James O’Keeffe – Streets

Tabled until Mr. O’Keeffe has a chance to take up the matter with Mr. Ashour and the Mayor later this week.

Police Department

Robert informed the council that he has issued 12 door hangers for sidewalk snow removal and all have been cleared without issuing any municipal infractions so far this year.

He also informed the council that there were two accidents that were the result of icy conditions where the intersections were only salted/sanded in one direction.  Mr. Airhart was not present to answer any questions and it was decided that the mayor would talk with Mr. Ashour to get the problem resolved.

New Business

The mayor informed the council that they needed a new motion to extend the overtime pay for the police department.  The amount is capped to not exceed the budgeted pay of the vacant 4th officer position.  A motion was made and passed to extend the overtime pay.

A special meeting date was set for a budget workshop on February 2nd at 6:30 pm.

New Council Member Appointed

Posted in Council Meetings at 10:44 pm by thevoicesofstuart

By Peggy Schlichter

Wade Chafa was appointed as the new council member filling the seat vacated by Cory Waddell last month.

January 9, 2009

Agenda, January City Council Meeting

Posted in Agenda at 6:25 pm by thevoicesofstuart

Here is the agenda for the Monday night city council meeting.

Agenda, January City Council Meeting