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Seligman CC revokes business license

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

On Jan. 9, the Seligman City Council voted to revoke the business license for the Seligman Super Stop for nonpayment of sales tax. The business must be closed by Jan. 31.

Jim Townsend, Seligman Super Stop owner, reported to the council that much of his financial issues were due to nonpayment by residential and commercial customers who charged the business for diesel fuel.

According to Joan Andrews, city clerk, the city entered into an agreement with Townsend in January of 2011. The agreement was designed to allow Townsend to catch up on the payment of city sales tax. As of the meeting, Townsend was still behind on his city sales tax payments.

Seligman's business licenses expire at the end of December each year. New licenses are issued to businesses in January.

According to state statutes, in order to receive a license, each business must present a no tax due statement from the Missouri Department of Revenue. Townsend was unable to produce the statement this year.

After considering the issue, the council voted to revoke the business license and shut down the Seligman Super Stop. The aldermen also voted to allow Townsend time to sell his perishable items and notify his employees by allowing the business to operate until the last day in January.

The city is unsure how much sales tax revenue has been lost due to nonpayment by Townsend.

During the meeting, the aldermen also accepted the resignation of Police Chief Mike DeWitt, who plans to attend law school. DeWitt offered to serve the city as a part-time reserve officer, which the council accepted.

DeWitt recommended Lt. Marion Jacobson be appointed as police chief. After asking Jacobson if he was interested in the position, Mayor Jason Raucstadt appointed him to the post.

Jacobson reported that the Seligman Police Department conducted 113 traffic stops in December. A total of 64 citations and 59 warnings were issued. Officers also made 15 arrests and took 32 reports.

Jacobson, who will also serve as the city's code enforcement director, reported that officers are working with residents at 13 locations with damaged or disabled vehicles, dangerous buildings and other code violations.

In old business, the aldermen voted to increase the city's water and sewer rates.

The base water rate for customers who live within the city was increased from $12.50 to $15 per month. The base rate for customers who live outside of the city was increased from $15.50 to $20 per month. The base rate includes the first 2,000 gallons of water used.

The water usage rate, which is for each additional 1,000 gallons of water, was increased from $1.80 to $2.25 for Seligman residents. The usage rate for customers who live outside the city limits was increased from $2.40 to $4.

The base sewer rate, which includes the first 2,000 gallons of water, was increased from $11.48 to $13.50. The sewer usage rate was raised from $2.84 to $5 per 1,000 additional gallons of water used. Sewer services are only offered to Seligman residents.

In new business, the council voted to increase Jacobson's pay to $15 per hour due to his promotion to police chief. The aldermen also voted to give Andrews, Court Clerk Kari Short, wastewater operator Tony Amos and Raucstadt a 3 percent pay increase effective the next pay period. Raucstadt serves as a city employee.

The council also voted to give Aldermen Michael Steen, Danny Joe Hendrix, Kelly Payne and Eric Freeman a 3 percent pay increase effective with the February paychecks.

Police officer pay increases will be made at the discretion of Jacobson.

In other business, the Seligman City Council:

* Reviewed the December 2011 maintenance report.

* Heard the library and museum report, which was presented by Brian Nichols.

* Approved the use of courtmoney.com, which will allow individuals to make utility and court payments online.

* Voted to purchase a Garmin handheld GPS to map the city's water and sewer system. The GPS will cost $216.73.

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