View Other Items in this Archive | View All Archives | Printable Version

Kearney, Nebraska

November 26, 2002

7:30 p.m.

 

Prior to the regular Council meeting, the Council met as the Board of Directors for the Kearney Municipal Airport Corporation in open and public session at 7:30 p.m. on November 26, 2002 in the Council Chambers at City Hall.  This meeting adjourned at 7:37 p.m.  A meeting of the City Council of Kearney, Nebraska, was convened in open and public session at 7:38 p.m. on November 26, 2002, in the Council Chambers at City Hall.  Present were:  Peter Kotsiopulos, President of the Council; Michaelle Trembly, City Clerk; Council Members Bruce Blankenship, Randy Buschkoetter, Jose Zapata.  Absent: Don Kearney.  G. Allen Johnson, City Manager; Michael Kelley, City Attorney; John Prescott, Assistant City Manager; Wendell Wessels, Director of Finance and Administration; Kirk Stocker, Director of Utilities; and Rod Wiederspan, Director of Public Works were also present.  Some of the citizens present in the audience included: Mike Martinosky, Ken Tracy, Mike Erickson, Mike Konz of Kearney Hub, Mike Cahill of KKPR Radio, Dave Jenner of KGFW Radio, NTV Channel 13, KHAS Channel 5, and 4 UNK students.

 

Notice of the meeting was given in advance thereof by publication in the Kearney Hub, the designated method for giving notice, a copy of the proof of publication being attached to these minutes.  Advance notice of the meeting was also given to the City Council and a copy of their acknowledgment or receipt of such notice is attached to these minutes.  Availability of the Agenda was communicated in the advance notice and in the notice to the Mayor and City Council.  All proceedings hereafter shown were taken while the meeting was open to the attendance of the public.

 

I.    ROUTINE  BUSINESS

 

INVOCATION

 

Reverend Bob Neben, Faith United Methodist Church provided the Invocation.

 

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

 

Boy Scouts Dillon Krueger, A.J. Cannon, Logan Rall, and Steve Lowe led the Council members and audience in the Pledge of Allegiance.

 

ORAL COMMUNICATIONS

 

There were no Oral Communications.

 

II.    UNFINISHED  BUSINESS

 

There was no Unfinished Business.

 

III.    PUBLIC  HEARINGS

 

BOARD OF EQUALIZATION – PAVING DISTRICT NO. 2000-839

 

Moved by Zapata seconded by Kotsiopulos to reconvene the public hearing for the Council to meet as a Board of Equalization to assess costs for Paving Improvement District No. 2000-839 for Antelope Avenue from Highway 30 north 2020 feet and to consider Resolution No. 2002-272.  Roll call resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Buschkoetter, Zapata, Blankenship.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent.  Motion carried.

 

At the last Council Meeting, the Council met as a Board of Equalization and levied assessments on Paving Improvement District No. 2000-822 for Central Avenue from Talmadge Street to 11th Street, Paving Improvement District No. 2000-829 for the alley between Central Avenue and 1st Avenue from 21st Street to 22nd Street, Paving Improvement District No. 2000-838 for Avenue E from 51st Street to 56th Street, Paving Improvement District No. 2000-841 for 21st Street from 28th Avenue east 351 feet, Paving Improvement District No. 2000-842 for 28th Avenue from 21st Street to West Villa Drive, Paving Improvement District No. 2000-843 for 52nd Street from Avenue E east to its terminus in a cul-de-sac, Paving Improvement District No. 2000-844 for the alley between Central Avenue and 1st Avenue from 21st Street to Railroad Street, Paving Improvement District No. 2000-850 for 28th Avenue from 37th Street north to a point 150 feet south of 42nd Street, Water District No. 2000-509 for 28th Avenue from 21st Street to West Villa Drive and 21st Street from 28th Avenue east 351 feet, Water District No. 2000-510 for 52nd Street from Avenue E east to its terminus in a cul-de-sac, Water District No. 2000-515 for 28th Avenue from 37th Street to 39th Street, Sewer District No. 2000-452 for 28th Avenue from 21st Street north 270 feet, Sewer District No. 2000-453 for 52nd Street from Avenue E east to its terminus in a cul-de-sac, Sewer District No. 2000-458 for 28th Avenue from 37th Street to 39th Street.

 

Paving Improvement District No. 2000-839 for Antelope Avenue from Highway 30 north 2020 feet was continued until this meeting.  Because of a technicality, certified notification was sent to the owners of record notifying them that this matter would be heard on November 26th. 

 

The City Council is asked to sit as a Board of Equalization to levy the assessments.  Property owners will then be required to pay the first installment within 50 days (January 15, 2003) or will be able to pay the entire assessment without any interest prior to this date.

 

The City will recoup the costs associated with the construction of paving and improving the streets within such Paving Districts, except the cost of paving and improving the intersections of streets or avenues and spaces opposite alleys in such Paving Districts.

 

There was no one present in opposition to this hearing.

 

Moved by Kotsiopulos seconded by Buschkoetter to close the hearing as the Board of Equalization and to assess costs for the 2001 Part I Improvements consisting of Paving Improvement District No. 2000-839 for Antelope Avenue from Highway 30 north 2020 feet and approve Resolution No. 2002-272.  Roll call resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Zapata, Blankenship, Buschkoetter.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent.  Motion carried.

 

RESOLUTION NO. 2002-272

 

            BE IT RESOLVED BY THE PRESIDENT AND COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF KEARNEY, NEBRASKA:

            Section 1.  The President and Council find and determine that the street in Paving Improvement District No. 2000-839 has been improved by paving, curbing and guttering and incidental work, that none of the properties listed, which list is marked Exhibit “A” and made a part hereof by reference, were damaged thereby and that the amounts shown in the attached schedules do not exceed the amounts which each of said lots and parcels of ground were specially benefited by said improvements and the total amount of said special assessments does not exceed the costs of said improvements exclusive of the cost of the intersections and areas formed by the crossing of streets, avenues and alleys as heretofore determined by the Mayor and City Council.

            Section 2.  Notice of the time and purpose of hearing on special assessments for equalizing said special assessments has been published as provided by law in the Kearney Hub, and a copy of said notice mailed by certified mail to each party known to have a direct legal interest therein.

            Section 3.  That there be and there is hereby levied against each lot and parcel of ground set out in Exhibit “A” the amount set opposite each lot and parcel of ground.  Said assessments for Paving Improvement District No. 2000-839 shall become delinquent as follows:

            1/10th fifty days after date of this Resolution

            1/10th one year after date of this Resolution

            1/10th two years after date of this Resolution

            1/10th three years after date of this Resolution

            1/10th four years after date of this Resolution

            1/10th five years after date of this Resolution

            1/10th six years after date of this Resolution

            1/10th seven years after date of this Resolution

            1/10th eight years after date of this Resolution

            1/10th nine years after date of this Resolution

Each installment, except the first, shall draw interest at the rate of six per centum per annum from date of this Resolution until the same become delinquent and after they become delinquent at the rate of fourteen per centum per annum until paid.

            PASSED AND APPROVED THIS 26TH DAY OF NOVEMBER, 2002.

 

ATTEST:                                                           PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL

                                                                        AND EX-OFFICIO MAYOR

CITY CLERK

 

IV.    CONSENT  AGENDA

 

Moved by Buschkoetter seconded by Blankenship that Subsections 1 through 6 of Consent Agenda Item IV be approved.  Roll call resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Zapata, Blankenship, Buschkoetter.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent.  Motion carried.

 

1.         Approve Minutes of Regular Meeting held November 12, 2002.

 

2.         A-1 Services of Ky $585.00 Rep; Alltel $539.98 Various; Almquist, R $75.00 Su; Amer Red Cross $3,932.49 Comm. Betterment; Arehart, L $10.00 Reim; Artic Refrigeration $68.27 Rep; Associated Bag $75.54 Su; AT&T $49.41 Serv; Aviation Mgt $2,179.27 Serv; AWWA $1,240.00 Tr, Trn; Baker & Taylor $1,752.24 Bks; Bamford $137.00 Rep; BBC Audiobooks $239.91 Bks; Becker, G $22.50 Su; Berens-Tate Consulting $4,500.00 Serv; Blessing, Inc $399,026.91 Serv; Bob's Super Store $111.27 Serv; Boersma, C $63.28 Cla; Bosselman $19,740.65 Equip; Brilliance Audio $52.13 Bks; Broadfoot Sand $1,962.00 Su; Buffalo Air Service $1,784.53 Serv; Buffalo Co District Court $129.00 Ded; Carrothers Construction $200,124.45 Serv; Cash-W $481.00 Su; Cavendish, M $320.95 Bks; CDW $5,531.32 Serv, Su; CED/Amer Electric $71.67 Rep; Central Ag $393.45 Rep; Central Fire $71.75 Rep; Charter Comm $21.41 Serv; Charter Media Advertising $400.00 Adv; Chemguard $2,309.20 Su; Chesterman $110.00 Su; Chief Supply $363.49 Serv; City Glass $78.34 Rep; City of Ky $57,989.38 Various; Civic Plus $445.00 Serv; Clark Enersen Partners $955.98 Park Dev; College Savings Plan of NE $210.00 Ded; Corporate Div. Services $32,285.37 Claims; Cullen, M $19.98 Cla; Danielson, S $372.26 Tr; Dawson Co PPD $10,148.95 Util; Deere Credit $11,125.33 Lease; Dell $7,599.32 Various; Depository Trust $64,946.25 Int; Development Council $2,101.50 Econ Dev; D'Milaco Sports $1,932.00 Various; Dominion Construction $3,957.14 Serv; Don's Pioneer Uniforms $95.85 Cla; DT Development $2,024.50 Reim; Dutton-Lainson $135.00 Serv; EDM Equipment $130.40 Su; Ehrhart Griffin & Assoc $18,603.03 Serv; Emergency One $15,271.16 Lease; Envirotech Services $17,504.95 Lease; Expressions Catering $72.00 Various; Facts on File $99.00 Bk; Fedex $282.13 Various; Fire Protection Publications $108.00 Trn; Forest House $219.79 Bk; Fremont Nat'l Bank $33,676.27 Ded; Gall's $445.71 Various; Gary's I-80 Service $512.75 Serv; Gene's Electric $3,859.00 Park Dev; Great Amer Outdoor $52.55 Rep; Grimes, S $30.00 License; Grupe, B $13.50 Tr; H&H Distributing $184.80 Su; Hach $588.33 Various; Heartland Clerk's Assoc $20.00 Dues; Heinemann Library $94.18 Bk; Hoffmeister, A $100.00 Serv; Holiday Inn $202.64 Various; HTE Users Group $120.00 Serv; ICMA RC $2,469.84 Ded; IRS $76,663.58 Ded; ISDN $172.77 Serv; Jack Lederman Co $108.81 Various; JJE $294.00 Various; Johnsen Corrosion Engineering $7,236.00 Various; Johnson Controls $402.05 Rep; K Mart $294.47 Various; Kelley, M $44.85 Tr; Kirkham Michael Consulting $47,951.74 Various; Klaus, M $160.65 Tr; Koetters, J $20.95 Tr; Ky Area Chamber of Commerce $30,579.47 Various; Ky Area Solid Waste Agency $55,792.75 Tipping Fees; Ky Clinic $671.00 Serv; Ky Concrete $10,690.20 Su; Ky Hub $2,877.78 Various; L&W Service Center $59.00 Rep; L&W Tire $651.81 Various; Lacal Equipment $730.00 Rep; Lang, L $65.18 Tr; Larkin Aquatics $1,900.00 Serv; Law Enforcement Training Center $35.00 Civil Serv; League of NE Municipalities $53.00 Su; Leigh Environmental Equip $2,343.00 Rep; Lindner, S $143.66 Tr; Linweld $1,738.61 Various; Lockmobile 32.35 Rep; Logan Contractors Supply $9,600.00 Equip; Luke, D $115.00 Tr; Marchand, M $287.50 Tr; May, J $17.25 Tr; Medical Air Products $35.12 Su; Messenger, C $378.15 Tr; MES-Snyder $88.00 Rep; Mid State Units $120.00 Various; Mid-State Engineering $16.00 Serv; Midtown Communications $144.00 Various; Midwest Laboratories $132.00 Serv; Midwest Turf $172.77 Rep; Mieth, T $10.11 Cla; Milco Environmental Services $299.05 Serv; Miller and Associates $1,432.50 Serv; Mister Anderson's Co $233.60 Bk; MPH Industries $43.33 Rep; Municipal Supply $128.56 Inv; NAPA Auto Store $616.63 Various; Nat'l Alliance for Youth Sports $160.00 Certifications; NE Child Support $1,027.09 Ded; NE Crime Commission $6.00 Trn; NE Dept of Revenue $32,683.02 Taxes; NE Dept of Roads $459.75 Serv; NE Library Commission $1,124.00 Bks; NE Rural Water Assoc $100.00 Tr, Trn; NEland Distributors $184.80 Su; Nemaha Nursery $52,683.29 Serv; Newman Signs $53.86 Signs; Northeast Library System $32.00 Bks; Northgate Vet Clinic $137.02 Serv; Northstar Publishing $15.00 Bks; Northwestern Energy $2,418.31 Serv; Novus Windshield Repair $45.00 Su; NOWWA $50.00 Dues; NPPD $57,958.71 Various; NSBA $310.00 Dues; P.E.P. $45.00 Rep; Paramount Linen $372.98 Various; Pierson, Fitchett $68.00 Serv; Pitney Bowes $30.16 Serv; Platte Valley Comm $2,100.32 Various; Platte Valley State Bank $50.00 Ded; Preferred Mail $52.30 Pstg; Presto-X $45.00 Rep; Purdy, K $10.66 Su; Quality Books $259.11 Bks; Recorded Books $13.00 Bks; Reserve Account $3,000.00 Pstg; Russell's $85.00 Su, Equip; Saathoff, J $60.55 Pstg; Schanou, J $135.00 Tr; SF Analytical Lab $65.00 Serv; Siemens Airfield Solutions $6.80 Lighting; Snap on Tools $1,995.00 Tools; Solid Waste Agency Landfill $30.00 Serv; State of NE Dept. of Labor $1,560.00 Ins; State of NE HHS Laboratory $277.00 Serv; Sterling Distributing $31.28 Su; Stocker, K $11.00 Reim; Sutphen $284.50 Rep; Technical Maint $1,131.03 Rep; Terri's Shrub Design $550.00 Serv; Tielke's Sandwiches $231.90 Serv; Treadway Graphics $703.31 Su; Unico Group $3,100.00 Prem; Unique Books $60.69 Bks; United Distillers $192.54 Su; Urbanek, T $372.26 Tr; US Filter Dist $5,388.15 Various; US Postmaster $180.00 Pstg; Wastecorp $1,840.00 Rep; Water Environment Federation $86.00 Dues; West Group $1,169.30 Su; Winfield Beatty Const $1,404.00 Rep; Wing Scale Service $1,450.00 Rep; Xerox $543.12 Various; Yellow Van Cleaning $1,015.00 Various; Zimmerman Printers $596.00 Su; Payroll Ending 11-16-2002 -- $223,406.86.  The foregoing schedule of claims is published in accordance with Section 19-1102 of the Revised Statutes of Nebraska, and is published at an expense of $_________ to the City of Kearney.

 

3.         Receive recommendations of Planning Commission and set December 10, 2002 at 7:30 P.M. as date and time for hearing on those applications where applicable.

 

4.         Approve the request submitted by Robbi Kirk to extend Conditional Use Permit No. 2000-11 to locate a day care on property located at 1411 East 33rd Drive for a period of one year.

 

5.         Approve the recommendation from Administration on the purchase of a Crack Seal Melter/Applicator for the Public Work/Transportation Division from Rose Equipment/Ford Motor Credit Company for a five-year $6,087.00 annual lease payment and approve Resolution No. 2002-273.

 

RESOLUTION NO. 2002-273

 

            BE IT RESOLVED BY THE PRESIDENT AND COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF KEARNEY, NEBRASKA, that the agreement entitled “Municipal Finance Application”, a copy of which marked Exhibit 1 is attached hereto, negotiated by and between the City of Kearney and Rose Equipment Inc./Ford Motor Credit Company, be and is hereby accepted and approved, and the President of the Council is hereby authorized and directed to execute the same agreement on behalf of the City of Kearney.

            PASSED AND APPROVED THIS 26TH DAY OF NOVEMBER, 2002.

 

ATTEST:                                                           PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL

                                                                        AND EX-OFFICIO MAYOR

CITY CLERK

 

6.         Approve the request submitted by Mitch Humphrey to repeal Resolution No. 2002-261 and to change the 35-foot building setback line along 56th Street on Lots 1 and 2, Skiview Estates Fourth, an addition to the City of Kearney, Buffalo County, Nebraska and approve Resolution No. 2002-274.

 

RESOLUTION NO. 2002-274

 

            BE IT RESOLVED BY THE PRESIDENT AND COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF KEARNEY, NEBRASKA, that Resolution No. 2002-261, passed and approved on November 12, 2002 be and is hereby repealed.

            BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the plat of “SKIVIEW ESTATES FOURTH”, an addition to the City of Kearney, Buffalo County, Nebraska, duly made out, acknowledged and certified, and the same hereby is approved and in accordance with the provisions and requirements of Section 19-916 of the Nebraska Revised Statutes, accepted and ordered filed and recorded in the Office of the Register of Deeds of Buffalo County, Nebraska; said addition is hereby included within the corporate limits of said City and shall be and become a part of said City for all purposes whatsoever, and the inhabits of such addition shall be entitled to all the rights and privileges and shall be subject to all laws, ordinances, rules and regulations of said City.

            BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the President of the Council be and is hereby authorized and directed to execute the final plat on behalf of the City of Kearney, Nebraska.

            PASSED AND APPROVED THIS 26TH DAY OF NOVEMBER, 2002.

 

ATTEST:                                                           PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL

                                                                        AND EX-OFFICIO MAYOR

CITY CLERK

 

V.    CONSENT  AGENDA  ORDINANCES

 

None.

 

VI.    REGULAR  AGENDA

 

THE ROMAN – ADDITION TO PREMISES

 

Mayor Kotsiopulos stated that the application for an addition to the licensed premise submitted by T.E. SHELDON, dba “The Roman” in connection with their Class I52918 Liquor License located at 2004 Central Avenue will remain on the table.  Therefore, no action was taken.

 

KEARNEY COUNTRY CLUB – MANAGER APPLICATION; SAMME KAREL

 

Mayor Kotsiopulos opened for discussion the Application for Corporate Manager of Samme S. Karel submitted by KEARNEY COUNTRY CLUB, dba “Kearney Country Club” in connection with their Class C-09051 Liquor License located at 2800 19th Avenue.

 

There was nobody present to address the Council on this matter.

 

Moved by Blankenship seconded by Zapata to table until December 10, 2002 the Application for Corporate Manager of Samme S. Karel submitted by KEARNEY COUNTRY CLUB, dba “Kearney Country Club” in connection with their Class C-09051 Liquor License located at 2800 19th Avenue.  Roll call resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Zapata, Blankenship, Buschkoetter.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent.  Motion carried.

 

ORDINANCE NO. 6925 – AMEND FIREWORKS SECTIONS OF THE KEARNEY CITY CODE

 

Assistant City Manager John Prescott addressed the Council on this matter.  The City received a fair amount of feedback this year with respect to the number of days and hours in which fireworks are allowed for sale and discharge.  The Police Department received 57 calls about late or inappropriate fireworks shooting.  Seven arrests were made related to fireworks.

 

Currently, the City of Kearney charges $5.00 for a permit to sell permissible fireworks within the City.  According to current City Code, permissible fireworks may be sold in the City on June 27 through and including July 4 of each year.  On such days the sale and discharge of fireworks are permitted during the following times:

            June 27 through July 3 - 8:00 A.M. to 11:00 P.M.

            July 4 – 8:00 A.M. to midnight.

 

There were approximately 18 fireworks stands in 2002.  Three of the stands were operated by local groups raising money while the balance were operated by for-profit fireworks businesses.

 

City Administration contacted a number of communities around the state to determine their code on fireworks.  After reviewing the information from cities around Nebraska and reviewing the citizen comments that the City received, the following changes are proposed:

 

Increase the cost of a permit from $5 to $50.  According to the cities we contacted, the charge for a permit ranged from approximately $50 up to $1500.  To receive the City permit, the Fire Administrator makes an on-site visit to look for fire hazards and illegal fireworks.  Each stop is estimated to take 30 to 45 minutes.  It took two days of staff time to inspect the 18 stands in 2002. 

 

Limit the days and hours of fireworks sales and discharge.  Due to the fact that our past few summers have been extremely dry, the possibility of fireworks starting a fire is a very real threat.  The City also received complaints from individuals who have to work the days preceding the 4th that shooting fireworks until 11:00 p.m. makes it difficult for people to sleep.  The proposed change also lengthens the time to shoot and sell fireworks on July 3rd.  With the largest community fireworks celebration currently occurring on July 3rd, many people want to shoot their own fireworks off after viewing this display.  The following days and hours are proposed for fireworks:

Sale and discharge of fireworks – July 1 & 2 – 8 A.M. – 10:00 P.M.

Sale and discharge of fireworks – July 3 & 4 – 8 A.M.midnight

 

Include a section in the Code which allows the City to ban or further limit the sale/discharge of fireworks in the event of dry weather or other hazards.

 

Charge an additional $100 deposit to receive a permit to sell fireworks.  This deposit will be refundable if the fireworks stand is cleaned up and removed by July 7.  Many fireworks stand operators have started to neglect removing their stands by the required date as there is no current penalty.

 

Sparklers are further defined in the proposed Ordinance to match State regulations.  The definition of temporary fireworks stand is also clarified to conform with State statutes.

 

The proposed changes will allow the City to recover a larger portion of the cost involved with having the Fire Administrator inspect stands.  The new permit charge makes the City of Kearney comparable to other Nebraska municipalities.

 

July 4th is the one holiday that the State of Nebraska and other states allow people to celebrate in a way that can impact their neighbors.  The hours you are shooting off fireworks can impact your neighbors.  So they tried to balance the different ways people might celebrate the 4th of July with the ability of others to enjoy their property and homes. 

 

Council member Zapata asked if the City contacted any of the fund raiser groups as to the impact of the reduction from eight days to four days would have on them.  Assistant City Manager responded that he did not directly but did talk to one volunteer stand worker who expressed a sense of relief because it is tough to get enough volunteers to cover eight days in the stands.  Of the 18 stands noted, only three were for volunteer groups.  The rest were business enterprises, where they hired employees or that sole proprietors had set them up.  He did not visit with the three, this was information passed to him from another individual that visited with them.

 

Mayor Kotsiopulos commented that across the State, Kearney’s fee was not in line.  He recalled the difficulty this year regarding the dry conditions that the chief had to make.  He questioned whether regardless of the statute if the fire chief still had the authority to make that call regarding weather conditions and fireworks.  Assistant City Manager responded they believed that this would clarify the matter by placing it into the fire code specifically.   The fire chief in consultation with the City Manager and Council would arrive at a consensus to make such a call. 

 

Council member Buschkoetter wondered about four days versus eight days.  He believes that cutting that in half is somewhat dramatic.  He believed that this year was not a good example because it had been so dry.  The chief did not believe that this year was unusual in terms of fire calls during this period.

 

Assistant City Manager stated that Omaha does not allow them at all, Lincoln allows two days, and then out-state days vary from seven to eight days.  The concerns that were expressed from the community are that the amount of time that fireworks could be set off goes on for too long.  There is no perfect reasoning four days versus five days; they tried to choose one that was a compromise.

 

Council member Blankenship also had the same concerns.  He has worked firework stands and sees it as a real family activity.  He understands the concerns of the fire department.  He does not have a problem with the fees or the hours, but is a traditionalist and would not mind adding a few more days to the proposal.  He respects and admires the opinion of the fire department and their judgment.

 

Council member Buschkoetter stated that he has had two people say to him that they do not want to see the number of days reduced.  Council member Zapata stated that he does not think that a lot of people know about it. 

 

Mayor Kotsiopulos stated these types of topics are interesting and in another sense mundane.  The Council deals with multi-million projects and deal with peoples’ property.  They deal with these things because they touch their families, touch their neighbors, they are traditions and he believes that they need to be sensitive to these issues.  He stated that he could support this because of the analysis of the hard data, the fact that the fire department and the police department have to deal with this, and when you compare it to the other end of the spectrum of having nothing.  This is something.  Yet, if it were a question of feedback, he would be willing to table it at this time.

 

Council member Bushkoetter stated that if you cut the time from eight days to four day, those four days are going to be pretty intense.  If all fireworks had to be lit by midnight on the 4th of July, that also would be more intense.  He wondered how much in terms of fire safety would be benefited because the other days would be doubly intense.  He supported setting the earlier times on weeknights because they are work nights. 

 

Mike Miller, who manages a fireworks stand for Marv’s Discount Fireworks spoke on behalf of himself and Marvin Kohler.  He wanted to bring to the Mayor and Council’s attention that they are a serious business and are involved in fireworks twelve months of the year.  Once they are done with fireworks in July then they inventory and begin their ordering process.  They bring in products from as far away as China, Brazil and from Missouri, Texas and North Dakota.  He believes that there is a misconception about fireworks that they just show up on the 4th and open their trailer and go to work.  They actually import, retail, manufacture and package fireworks for the season.  They wanted to ask that this matter be extended.  They would like to be a part of the thoughtfulness that goes into this decision.  They believe that an eight-day season is realistic in their opinion.  He thinks that packing everything into four days might make things a little bit wild with those time constraints.  The other thing that they would like the Council to consider is that they bring people into the community for the product from all around the area and they generate a substantial amount of City sales tax in their efforts.

 

Councilmen Buschkoetter asked Mr. Miller what impact on sales there would be going from eight days to four.  He stated that four days would be a lot more rapid, but not sure if they would necessarily go down.  Mr. Miller said he has only had about two hours to think about this, but he was confident that it would have an impact.  It may take business away from the community because the State of Nebraska allows ten days. Most of the rural communities will allow the entire ten days selling season.  He suspects that a lot of business that might come into Kearney would go to outlying towns, like Holdrege, Lexington and places that are within driving distance.

 

Moved by Blankenship seconded by Zapata to table until December 10, 2002 Ordinance No. 6925 amending Article 6, “Fireworks” of Chapter 4 “Fire Regulations” of the Code of the City of Kearney to amend Section 4-601 “Fireworks; Definitions” to amend the definition of permissible fireworks; to amend Section 4-603, “Permit to Sell Permissible Fireworks” to increase the permit fee to $50.00; to amend Section 4-604, “Dates of Lawful Sale” to change the dates for sale to July 1 through July 4; to amend Section 4-605, “Temporary Fireworks Stands” to require temporary stands remain on the real estate for the period beginning June 27 through and including July 7 of each year and to require the payment of an additional $100.00 deposit refundable if the temporary stand is removed by July 7; to amend Section 4-609, “Discharging Fireworks; When Permissible” to allow the discharging of fireworks on July 1 and July 2 from 8:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. and on July 3 and July 4 from 8:00 a.m. until 12:00 a.m. midnight; and to add a new section entitled Section 4-615, “Weather Hazard” to allow the City to ban or limit the sale and/or discharge of fireworks in the event of dry weather or other weather hazards.  Roll call resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Blankenship, Buschkoetter, Zapata.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent. 

 

PROHIBIT CLOSING OF STREETS AND ALLEYS FOR BLOCK PARTIES

 

Mayor Kotsiopulos opened for consideration prohibiting the closing of public streets and alleys for block parties and to consider Resolution No. 2002-275.

 

Assistant City Manager John Prescott addressed the Council on this matter.  The City of Kearney has allowed residents, with City Council approval, to close residential streets for block parties.  Restrictions such as maintaining a lane for emergency vehicle use, no alcohol on public property, and hours of the closure have been the main restrictions placed on residents.  A history of the number of block parties involving street closing approved by the City Council in recent years is as follows:

 

                        1994 - 10                       1997 - 7                        2000 - 4

                        1995 - 11                       1998 - 6                        2001 - 4

                        1996 - 10                       1999 - 3                        2002 - 2

 

The City’s insurance carrier has raised concerns about liability issues when closing streets for “parties”.  City representatives involved with the insurance pool have argued that block parties help to foster neighborhood cohesiveness and build communities.  Unfortunately, Kearney is one of the few communities in Nebraska that still have block parties, so the insurance company is not experiencing much of a demand for such events.

 

The number of block party requests appears to be declining.  Combining this fact with the insurance company’s request to eliminate these events appears to make the request to end such events possible.  Kearney is the last first class city in Nebraska that still provides for this opportunity for our citizens to have a block party.

 

The City’s insurance provider believes that it would be in the best interest of the City of Kearney not to provide such a policy in order to deter possible lawsuits against the City in the case of an accident. 

 

Council member Blankenship stated that there are many great parks in the City and this is a liability issue.  Mayor Kotsiopulos agreed there are many backyards that could be used.

 

Moved by Zapata seconded by Kotsiopulos to prohibit the closing of public streets and alleys for block parties and approve Resolution No. 2002-275.  Roll call resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Zapata, Blankenship, Buschkoetter.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent.  Motion carried.

 

RESOLUTION NO. 2002-275

 

            WHEREAS, the City of Kearney has provided citizens with the opportunity to close residential streets for block parties; and

            WHEREAS, the number of block party requests have been declining in recent years; and

            WHEREAS, the City of Kearney’s insurance carrier has requested an end to the City allowing block parties to conform with their insurance practices and to minimize liability that might be incurred with allowing such block parties.

            NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the President and Council of the City of Kearney, Nebraska, that the City of Kearney will no longer allow block parties which involve the closing of any public streets or alleys for neighborhood gatherings.

            PASSED AND APPROVED THIS 26TH DAY OF NOVEMBER, 2002.

 

ATTEST:                                                                       PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL

                                                                                    AND EX-OFFICIO MAYOR

CITY CLERK

 

ORDINANCE NO. 6926 – CHANGE COUNCIL MEETING DATE FROM DECEMBER 24, 2002 TO DECEMBER 23, 2002

 

According to Section 1-210 of the Kearney City Code, “regular Council meetings shall be held on the second and fourth Tuesdays in each month, at 7:30 p.m.”  State law, Section 19-615, requires cities of the first class to meet monthly but not less frequently than twice each month.

 

The second meeting in December falls on Christmas Eve.  In order for everyone to be with their families on that evening, Administration is suggesting changing the meeting date to Monday, December 23rd.  Proposed Ordinance No. 6926 was presented to the Council changing the date and authorizing the City Clerk to publish notice of the changed time at least twice prior to the new date of said meeting.

 

Council Member Kotsiopulos introduced Ordinance No. 6926, being Subsection 5 of Agenda Item VI to amend Section 1-210 “Meetings” of Article 2 “City Council” of Chapter 1 “Administration” of the Code of the City of Kearney to change the regular Council Meeting from Tuesday, December 24, 2002 at 7:30 p.m. to Monday, December 23, 2002 at 7:30 p.m., and moved that the statutory rules requiring ordinances to be read by title on three different days be suspended and said ordinances be considered for passage on the same day upon reading by number only, and then placed on final passage and that the City Clerk be permitted to call out the number of the ordinance on its first reading and then upon its final passage.  Council Member Buschkoetter seconded the motion to suspend the rules.  President of the Council asked for discussion or if anyone in the audience was interested in the ordinance.  No one responded.  Clerk called the roll which resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Buschkoetter, Zapata, Blankenship.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent.  Motion to suspend the rules having been concurred in by three-fourths of the City Council, said motion was declared passed and adopted.  City Clerk read Ordinance No. 6926 by number.  Roll call of those in favor of the passage of said ordinance on the first reading resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Buschkoetter, Zapata, Blankenship.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent.  Motion carried.  Ordinance was read by number.

 

Moved by Buschkoetter seconded by Blankenship that Ordinance No. 6926 be passed, approved and published as required by law.  Roll call resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Buschkoetter, Zapata, Blankenship.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent.  Motion carried.

 

By reason of the roll call voted on the first reading and final passage of the ordinance, Ordinance No. 6926 is declared to be lawfully passed and adopted upon publication in pamphlet form and made available to the public at the Office of the City Clerk, the Kearney Police Department and the Kearney Public Library.

 

OPEN ACCOUNT CLAIMS --      NONE

 

There were no Open Account Claims.

 

VII.    REPORTS

 

AVENUE M OVERPASS DEDICATION

 

Public Works Director Rod Wiederspan announced that December 6, 2002 at 3:00 p.m. is the tentative date set for the ribbon cutting for the Avenue M Overpass Dedication.

 

MAYOR KOTSIOPULOS ACCLAMATION

 

Council members and City Administration thanked Mayor Kotsiopulos for his dedication and leadership he has provided the last 12 years.  Mayor Kotsiopulos, in turn, thanked the Council and City Administration for their guidance, professionalism, and friendship.

 

VIII.    ADJOURN

 

Moved by Kotsiopulos seconded by Buschkoetter that Council adjourn at 8:18 p.m.  Roll call resulted as follows:  Aye: Kotsiopulos, Zapata, Blankenship, Buschkoetter.  Nay: None.  Kearney absent.  Motion carried.

 

                                                                        PETER G. KOTSIOPULOS

                                                                        PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL

                                                                        AND EX-OFFICIO MAYOR

ATTEST:

MICHAELLE E. TREMBLY

CITY CLERK