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MOUNT VERNON — Sale of the Elmwood fire station, the possible hiring of an assistant utilities director, regulation of low-level cell towers and council’s meeting schedule are all on Monday’s City Council agenda. Then, throw in downtown parking regulations, and it makes for an eventful evening.
Prior to the 7:30 p.m. meeting, a public hearing has been set for 6:15 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. to hear public comments on the sale of the fire station. This will include more information from Jeff Harris of the Area Development Foundation on why the Knox County Land Bank should handle the property’s sale.
In recent months, the city administration has said they are considering creating the position of Assistant Utilities Director. An ordinance creating the position was proposed last year but was withdrawn before any action could be taken.
Mayor Richard Mavis and Safety-Service Director Joel Daniels said work is proceeding on writing a job description.
No legislation is on the agenda, but a 15-minute Utilities Committee meeting has been scheduled for 6:45 p.m. for the administration to lay out the reasons they think the position should be created and get some feedback from Council.
Daniels said they will be prepared to introduce legislation at the Jan. 28 council meeting on the process of getting Civil Service approval of the description. He said this will be a non-union, management position.
Daniels pointed out that the Utilities Director has two plants to oversee (water and wastewater), plus the collection and distribution system and the billing office. There are also constantly new guidelines from the Environmental Protection Agency to keep up on. The job is seen as taking some of the administrative work load off Director Mathias Orndorf.
When proposed last year they were looking at a salary of $59,420, but that may change. Daniels said. It would be paid out of Water/Wastewater funds.
Daniels sad if council is receptive, they would like to fill the position in the first half of this year.
The final committee meeting at 7 p.m. will be for the Parks and Lands Committee to discuss a proposed ordinance regulating the placing of low-level “cell towers” on utility poles in the public right-of-way.
A revised version of the change in parking enforcement in the central business district is on the agenda for first reading.
This version restricts enforcement to 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. An earlier version also eliminated Saturday enforcement.
What would normally be a routine ordinance setting the council meeting schedule for the year will make a change. After some discussion at the last meeting in December, this schedule will include two meetings each month in June, July and August, instead of one as has been the practice in recent years.
Other items on Monday’s agenda include:
•A resolution authorizing obtaining bids and issuing a contract for a building addition at Hiawatha Water Park to separate the heaters and the chlorinator because the chlorine fumes are destroying the pool heaters.
•An ordinance to increase the fine for illegally parking in a handicapped parking zone.
•Second reading of a resolution approving the Delaware-Knox-Marion-Morrow Joint Solid Waste Managed District’s amended draft solid waste management plan.
•A resolution approving the reappointment of Corby Wise of East Gambier Street to the Historical Review Commission for a one-year term.
•A resolution confirming the appointment of Jim Meyer of East High Street to the unexpired term of Nathan Paff on the Metropolitan Housing Authority.
•A resolution appointing Janis Seavolt to the Main Street Mount Vernon Board of Directors.
•Resolutions accepting the $200,000 grant from the state for the Parrott Street project and authorizing the auditor to appropriate the funds.