The Hiawatha City Commission met Monday night and discussed a property that had already been granted an extension to eliminate violations of the minimum housing code.
The property at 113 South 6th St. was discussed and Dave Wilson, the city’s code officer, said there was no water service on the property, but there is had a question whether or not anyone lived in the building. Commissioner Brian Shefferd said he was told there were no residents, then he shared his opinion that the city is trying to force the sale of the building. He agreed that the exterior of the building needed to be cleaned up, but said he didn’t believe that whatever condition was inside the building was the city’s business. Code Enforcer Wilson said security issues are indeed the business of the city. Mayor Bill Collins said he would like to speak with the owner before deciding on the next step.
Dean Tollefson, the owner of the property, was present later in the meeting and provided an update. Tollefson said he agreed the property was in breach of the minimum housing code and that the business had been closed for 10 and a half months and would remain closed until the property was up to code, and also clarified that no one lives . in the building. He was told to keep in touch with Wilson as he moved forward.
Sewage Superintendent Dave Grimm informed the commission that there is a potential leak in the sewer line under Highway 73. Grimm said the department could not see as far as it needed to with cameras due to pocketed water. It was agreed to bring a company to check the line.
City Administrator Larry Paine said the previously suggested date for the public hearing on the 2023 budget will have to be moved because after working on the budget he will recommend sending a notice to exceed the rate of revenue neutrality.
Parks and Recreation Director Stacy Jasper was recognized for her years of service to the city and provided an update on summer programs and repairs. The Board has recognized and posted on its website a Proclamation for Parks and Recreation Professionals Day.
Paul Shaefer, 2nd Deputy Fire Chief, reported that the fire department will consider establishing a fund with the Hiawatha Community Foundation and report back at a later date.
The commission awarded a bid to lease copiers and printers for City Hall and the Police Department to Capitol Business Solutions, not to exceed $400 per month, which will run through July 2027.
The group also approved a final payment to Atlas Electric in the amount of $125,800 for work at the airport, as well as a contract with AgPartners for propane in the amount of $6,331.50.
The commission approved the consent program, which included a payment of $1,545.00 to BG Consultants, a payment of $51,201.79 to Olsson, a payment of $11,873.78 to Utility Service Co., a payment to Wolf River Nursery in the amount of $5,518.00 and utility account reimbursements. of $719.61. The committee adjourned to begin a budget work session.