The Monticello City Council is going to shake things up with their meeting schedule in 2009.
The council approved a change at the December 10 meeting to begin holding council meetings on the second and fourth Tuesday of every month. They have met on Wednesday evenings.
Several members of the Council expressed a desire to change the day of the week for the meeting. With the change, two committees will have new meeting days, Parks and Beautification on the fourth Thursday, and Economic Development on the third Thursday.
Councilman Jeremy Hoggard said that the City Council agendas from October to December are too full because they hold only one meeting in September, November and December. He suggested two meetings every month except September, and that meetings could be cancelled if there is no need to hold them. The council unanimously approved scheduling the additional meetings.
The Golf Committee will be getting a make-over for 2009. The council voted unanimously to dissolve the current golf committee and bylaws. They unanimously approved the formation of a new golf committee of seven members, including three members of the governing body, and four at large members from the community.
They will be given the power over day to day activities at the course. The council said it will streamline operations and communications between everyone involved in the management of the course. The council discussed whether or not committee members need to be avid golfers, or if they should have a background in marketing. The council agreed that a mix would be helpful, but they felt that every member of the committee needs to have an interest in making the course better, including some avid golfers.
There is some concern over having three councilmen on the committee, which could result in the council controlling the decisions of the group. City Manager Myron Lee said he likes the proposal because it “creates a faster acting, more authoritative board than what we have right now.”
Mayor Doug Allen said that changing the committee would cut down on the amount of golf-related discussion at City Council meetings.
Councilman Brad Randall said that it was important to make a decision in the off season. The council decided to dissolve the current committee and ask that anyone interested in serving, including past members, submit applications to the council.
The council will make the new bylaws a priority and hope to approve the new members of the committee by the first meeting in January. Councilmen Walter Bird, Brad Randall and Jeremy Hoggard were appointed as governing body representatives to the board.
Golf course revenue for 2008 was down but play was up. Councilman Brad Randall reported that the course saw it’s best round play since it opened, with 17,291 rounds played as of the closing date this year. That was up from 16,629 rounds played in the 2007 season.
The revenue through November was $256,573, in contrast to a 2007 revenue of $285,008. It was reported that some additional revenues will still come in. The council was reminded that in the past, the sales tax was also reported as revenue, but was not this year, which would account for a six percent difference.
Lee reports that the course is on track to come in on budget, both for revenue and expenses. The course had a budget of $311,000 for the fiscal year.
Councilman Scott Frost asked if there is a reason that the play was up while revenue was down. Course Pro Terry Eardley reported that play seemed to be up among season pass holders, and that he has made an extra effort to keep track of every round played by pass holders and employees, which was not always done in the past.
Mayor Doug Allen praised the staff for a well run course and expressed appreciation for their efforts. Allen isn’t thrilled with the lower revenue, but is pleased that the course is on budget for the year.
Assistant City Manager Ruth Skouson presented the council with an update on the airport. She addressed recent complaints that have been made regarding public information on the new location, and pointed out that there were two public hearings held by the city on the issue, both of which resulted in overwhelming support for the new location. She also reports they are continuing to work on being released from the CRP contract that is in effect on the land for the new location, and have received favorable response from the regional and state offices of the USDA-Farm Service Agency, and it has been forwarded to the next level for approval.
In other business, Skouson recommended the council place a moratorium on all Board of Adjustment actions. The recommendation comes after Skouson researched issues related to special exceptions and variances, and found that special exceptions have been removed from Utah Law since 2005, and variance laws have been updated.
She told the council that the City also needs to update the powers and duties of the Board of Adjustments in the City code. Skouson told the council that the moratorium would need to be put in place in order to keep people from applying for special exceptions and variance, since the City Code is in conflict with State Law, and time is needed to bring the City into compliance. State law allows the City to use a moratorium of up to six months in order to make the changes. The council approved the six month moratorium.
The council approved the appointment of Scott Burton to the Planning Commission, and Pat Barr and Tammy Musselman to the Board of Adjustments. They also approved amendments to the subdivision regulations as recommended by the Planning Commission.
Changes will soon be made to the late payment fees policy for city utility accounts, including a requirement that past due accounts can accept only cash or credit card payments. They are also considering an increase in the reconnect fee, as well as a $150 deposit requirement for new customers and reconnects.
City Manager Myron Lee pointed out that the city is carrying over $13,000 in delinquent utility bills. Lee will work on the policy for the council to review at the next council meeting.
The council passed an ordinance for highways or public transit system tax, and an ordinance for botanical, cultural, recreation, and zoological organizations or facilities tax. Mayor Allen clarified that both sales taxes were approved by voters in the recent election.