Despite continued questioning by Cindy Slaubaugh, candidate for city council, the Wellman City Council stay on course Monday night, Nov. 1, to proceed with final plans for the proposed activities …
Despite continued questioning by Cindy Slaubaugh, candidate for city council, the Wellman City Council stay on course Monday night, Nov. 1, to proceed with final plans for the proposed activities complex.
A motion by Max Lewis, second by Karl Yoder, to defer advertising for bids until the council has approval of final drawings and specifications of the activities complex failed to pass when Murvel Weidlein abstained and Joelene McCain and Michael Slagle voted no.
At the October 18 meeting, the council hand instructed architect Steve Rohrbach to proceed getting the plans and specifications ready so the city could advertise for bids by mid-November and receive bids in early December .
The council’s action came after Slaubaugh repeatedly asked the council why they were going to proceed without a “proper business plan” showing costs and what income they expect to have from memberships. She noted she had presented the city with a petition from 300 citizens stating they wouldn’t buy memberships.
Slaubaugh asked the council “to take their blinders off and get their ducks in order before they proceed” any further with building plans and letting of bids for the complex. She demanded to know what happened to the community survey she had been promised.
She repeatedly said that the city could not afford the project and charged that the city should not proceed until they could guarantee how it is to be paid for.
Councilman Max Lewis also agreed that the council had to be “out of our minds” to proceed to letting of bids” if there aren’t sufficient funds to pay the operating costs.
Murvel Weidlein stated the Wellman Foundation does have the funds to fulfill its commitments and to pay the $60,000 first year operating costs.
Lewis stated he estimated it would costs $57,800 to operate the center and that memberships would generate $21,275 leaving a shortfall of $38,625. He expressed concern that the city didn’t have the funds especially since it faces a $1.1 million bill for a new sewer treatment plant.
Lewis was instructed to get in place a contract with the Foundation formalizing its commitment for funding and first year’s operating costs.
When Slaubaugh asked McCain and Slagle why they voted no, both said they were simply tired of arguing with her as there wasn’t a need for any more discussion.
The council authorized that a infiltration study be done of the city’s sewer mains as there appears to be a lot of water getting into certain areas. Cost was estimated at $500 as the city already has the dye to be used in the study.
Councilman Lewis speculated that it was the large amount of infiltration into the mains that was driving up the costs of the new sewer plan to $1.1 million. He also stressed that the water/sewer revenues would be strained to retire that SRF loan.
Property purchase tabled
The council voted to table the purchase of 312 8th Ave from Dr. J. Miller at a cost of $30,000 until the city attorney has an opportunity to approve the purchase agreement. The city has already made a 20 percent or $6,000 down payment. Council Max Lewis objected until the attorney reviews the contract. “If you were my employee, you’d be terminated,” Lewis told Mayor Wilbur Swartzendruber , who had hammered out the agreement.
In other action, the council:
•approved by consensus the revised senior dining staff guidelines. They stressed to Charles Capper that the job descriptions just standardized those jobs and didn’t change anything as far as the operation and management of the senior dining center.
•approved the purchase of 72 replacement street signs at a cost of about $750 out to Road Use Tax funds.
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