Written by Al Stover
The Wolf Point City Council awarded the primary architect review contract to Stefan Associates at the city council meeting, Sept. 19.
City clerk and treasurer Marlene Mahlum said the company’s bid was not the lowest or highest; however, they had a lot more information that was already prepared. She also said the other three bidders also did not have a lot of experience working on housing projects.
Malhum said the contracts will be under legal review. The council also approved the compensation contract for Jonathan Reed. Mahlum said the environmental review will go under legal review. Once it has been approved by the Montana Board of Housing, then the city can purchase the land for the project.
Cape Air was chosen by the Department of Transportation to be the supplier Essential Air Service for northeast Montana. The starting date will be Dec. 1. There will be two flights for each city every day.
Tom Romo said he has been reviewing the Assiniboine Sioux Rural Water Supply easements. According to Romo, only one of the easements has been completed. He said he requested completed documents on all the easements.
Romo said the airport was working with the Federal Aviation Administration to apply for a grant to work on the drains at the airport. Mayor Dewayne Jager complimented Romo on the grass at the airport.
Malhum said the city has been awarded the Community Development Block Grant planning grant. The planning board is scheduled to meet and they will present a map at the next meeting.
Police chief Jeff Harada presented the monthly report from the police department.
Councilman Bill Braaten brought up that high school’s Homecoming and Native American Week Parade will be on Sept. 27 and the Christmas Parade of Lights was set for Dec. 6.
In business matters, the council approved the hire of James Poitra to maintenance worker II, Grant Zimmerman for water and waste operator trainee I. They also approved Lucas Hall’s promotion to maintenance worker III. There are still openings for a sewage and waste maintenance worker II and a maintenance worker II.
The personnel/policy and wage committee met before the meeting and voted to keep the 5 percent longevity and the 3 percent cost of living adjustment. The committee is planning to discuss setting different guidelines for the time it takes an employee to qualify for longevity.
Jager made a suggestion to set aside 15 percent of the enterprise funds for capital improvements. He said that at one time 20 percent had been set aside for projects. Mahlum said they had lowered the percent many years ago because the budget had gotten tight. She said that she doesn’t see a problem raising the percentage set aside because of the increase in the budget over the years.
Jager said his suggestion was just “food for thought” and that he would like to see the next mayor or council take this on.
The mayor also said he would like to take some oil severance funds and put it in a special street project. He asked if he could do that with the money and Mahlum said only the money that was in the reserves is not being used for anything and recommended transferring some of the money into other funds to build for street improvements. The council agreed to put that on the agenda for regular meeting in October.
The window and trim for city hall is almost finished, with the workers only having to replace a couple of boards.