City hears insurance auditorium reports

OSMOND — The Osmond City Council met Monday, Feb. 8, in the conference room at 5 p.m., a time change from the usual 7:30 p.m. meeting.

Insurance Coverages Discussed

Lisa Schmit of Town & Country Insurance presented a report on cyber liability insurance. She distributed handouts to council members regarding both a commercial cyber liability proposal and quotes for the insurance.

While searching the market, she found that cyber insurance coverage is specifically designed to protect an organization from a wide range of threats including data breaches and cyber extortion. This type of insurance is not covered under the city’s current general liability insurance policy.

Schmit reviewed quotes from two different companies and explained the retention (deductible) number. She said statistics show that 97% of all municipalities do not have a good cyber insurance plan in place. Council was invited to contact Schmit if they have any further questions following the meeting.

Josh Sirek, also of Town & Country Insurance, reviewed options for the city to either renew or to seek another proposed health insurance plan for city employees working full-time. He stated the current plan expires on March 1, 2021.

Following a lengthy discussion, council members voted to ratify the UHC HSA CD-QN plan for the upcoming year and for the city to make a one-time upfront contribution of $1,500 to each full-time employee’s HSA plan.

City Auditorium Needs

Councilman Neil Wattier asked for feedback on repairs needing to be done at the city auditorium. He explained repair work needs to be done around the front door and the south door off the kitchen area, said the cupboard above the kitchen sink should be kitchen sink needs to be replaced, suggested replacing the sink and the faucet, and said that the exhaust fan in the kitchen needs repair. Mayor Dennis Kuhl asked Wattier to get numbers on what it would cost to do the repairs and to move forward on getting the work done.

Street Improvement Districts Created

Present at the meeting was Steve Parr of JEO Consulting Group, Inc. He reported First Street from Main Street to one-half block east of Logan Street has been added to the street improvement plans. To include all streets in need of repairs caused by the March 2019 flood, it would be necessary to create 10 street improvement districts.

The total preliminary opinion of cost for this work would be $3,092,664.00. Parr reviewed the process for creation of the districts.

Following discussion, council approved the creation of the 10 street improvement districts. Council also approved having Mayor Kuhl execute an agreement between the City of Osmond and JEO Consulting Group for Engineer’s services for Project 2022 Street Improvements creating 10 street improvement districts in 2021 at an hourly fee not to exceed a $10,500.00 total.

Christmas Decorations Needed

Tom Kruse asked council to consider purchasing new Christmas decorations for the city light poles. He reviewed options and sale prices good up until the end of March. After discussion, council approved ordering from Northern Lights six new 5-ft. holiday decorations (two candy canes and two stockings at $229 each and two candles at $371 each) along with 12 unlit pole wraps at $41 each.

FEMA Updates

The following reports on FEMA updates were presented:

Treasurer Cindy Hoffman said FEMA’s denial of assistance for city road damages was forwarded to council members on Jan. 14, 2021. FEMA’s new PDMG for Osmond is Gentry Salter. She asked if council had anything to include in her draft appeal of FEMA’s Determination Memo on PA ID 139-37595-00, FEMA-4420-DR. No changes were made Hoffman plans to submit the appeal by the end of February even though the deadline is not until March 12, 2021.

Steve Parr reported for Brent Ciecior, project engineer of JEO Consulting Group, on repair of damages caused by the 2019 flood to the city storm sewer. The project permit with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is in place and does not expire until 2022. FEMA’s deadline for the city to have the repair work completed is March 2021.

Treasurer Hoffman has requested an extension to go through September 2021. The cost of the project is estimated at $80,000. Parr reviewed the bidding process, said the work to be done on the Storm Sewer Outfall Repair Project would take two to three weeks to complete and asked if the city was ready to move forward.

Council agreed to move forward on repair of the drainage structure, for JEO Consulting Group, Inc, to be the engineering firm (to prepare a specification document for a fee of $1,000 and to assist with the bidding on the repair project for a fee of $2,000), to run an ad for bids for three consecutive weeks with the first ad to run on Feb. 17 and to plan a Special City Council meeting on or about March 9 to open bids.

Other Items Discussed

Jake Klein asked council for ideas on how to handle the many stray cats in the area where he lives at 310 North Logan in Osmond. Police Chief Tyler Wells commented on various things that cities have tried but found none to be successful. Mayor Kuhl said he talked to city officials in nearby towns but had no luck in finding a solution. He extended an apology to Klein since there is nothing the city can do.

Mike Enevoldsen asked council to rescind closure of the alley by his home thinking he might be able to purchase a piece of property in the area and, if so, would need use of the alley for access. Caleb Eckstrom confirmed the property had already been sold.

Mayor Kuhl reported a $1,715 refund was received for the 2019-20 FY Workers CompensationAudit; $1,909 received from ACE Public Alliance for the Community Energy revenue return program for Fiscal Year 2020-21; $2,402 received from Black Hills Energy for the 2020 franchise fee; $39,935.24 received from Northeast Power for the lease payment and operations fee for the fourth quarter of 2020; and a $200 donation was received from Glenda Aschoff for city cemetery maintenance.

Police Chief Taylor Wells presented a brief report including a harassment case and a suspicious person report. He plans to contact Susan Norris, Director of Pierce County Economic Development, to ask about options for funding to help cover costs for purchase of equipment that is a requirement by the State.

In other business, the council:

— agreed to have Councilman Timmerman pursue looking for a truck to replace the 1975 Ford dump truck for a better piece of equipment to haul snow, and to call a special meeting to review his findings when that time occurs.

— approved running an ad twice for applications to fill the positions of manager, assistant manager and lifeguards at the city pool.

— granted permission for Assistant Treasurer Brittney Backstrom to attend the League of Nebraska Municipalities February 2021 virtual Midwinter Treasurers Conference to comply with the annual continuing education requirements for municipal treasurers as mandated in LB 781, passed in 2020.

— heard Assistant Treasurer Backstrom report an ACE Choice Gas Community Power project “Coffee Talk Event” which will be open to the public is set to be held on March 16, 2021, at 3:30 p.m. at the city auditorium.

— heard Mayor Kuhl read a thank you note to the city from Jane Brummels for the Osmond Dollars she received at Christmas time.

— heard Mayor Kuhl stated city sales tax for November 2020 was a total of $13,544.45 (of that amount $1,386.15 is from motor vehicle tax).

— entered into closed session to discuss updated final notices for past due utility accounts.

— after review of the updated Utility Service Disconnect Notice and related documents, agreed city staff should seek advice from legal counsel before implementing use of the new forms.

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