Seligman discusses utility rate increases

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Seligman City Council discussed a possible water and sewer rate increase at its regularly scheduled meeting on Nov. 14.

Currently, the city is not receiving enough revenue from utility fees to cover operating expenses. Officials are also concerned that the city does not have a reserve fund for water and wastewater system repairs and upgrades.

On Nov. 30, Jim Enterline, Missouri Rural Water Association technical, managerial and financial circuit rider, will visit Seligman to advise the council on a possible water and sewer rate increase.

The aldermen will hold a public hearing to gather input and opinions from city water and sewer users at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 15. The council's regular monthly meeting, scheduled to be held on Dec. 12, will be held after the hearing on Dec. 15.

The council approved an ordinance that addresses compensation for elected officials. On Dec. 8, 2008, the council voted to pay the mayor $150 per month and the aldermen $75 per month for their regular city duties.

According to the ordinance approved this month, if the mayor or an alderman performs work in addition to service as a city official, they will be compensated on an hourly basis. The pay amount must be approved by a majority vote of the council.

The ordinance also states that additional benefits, such as those received by regular employees, can be awarded by a majority vote of the council.

Mileage and expenses related to the duties of the aldermen and mayor are reimbursed after documentation is provided. Limitations can be set by the mayor or a majority vote of the council. Mileage is paid at the IRS mileage rate for business.

The council also received an update on the city's annual holiday activities.

Seligman residents must sign up for the annual Christmas lighting contest by Dec. 1. Judging will be held on Dec. 2, 3 and 4. The winners will be announced after the Seligman Christmas Parade on Dec. 10.

This year's Christmas parade will offer $610 in prize money. Local businesses, organizations and individuals are invited to enter the event, which will offer seven different competition categories.

Santa will visit the Seligman Community Center after the parade. He will greet children and hand out treat bags to youngsters. Cookies and refreshments will be available at the center for all attendees.

In new business, the council approved annual employee bonuses, which will be distributed on Dec. 15. Full-time employees, who have worked for the city for at least one year, will receive $250, and part-time employees will receive $100.

In other business, the Seligman City Council:

* Heard police, library and adult education program reports.

* Reviewed the maintenance reports.

* Voted to purchase a 2001 Dodge four-wheel drive 3500 cab chassis with 151,000 miles from Ruark Diesel for $8,000. The vehicle will be used as a maintenance truck.

* Removed city employee Marty Robbins from probationary status and made him eligible for benefits as a full-time employee.

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