Fate of former pool area discussed
Possible uses for the area that once was the Wayne swimming pool were discussed during Tuesday's meeting of the Wayne City Council.
Katie Wynia, representing the "Old Pool Use Committee" spoke to the council and told the council the group has met on several occasions to talk about possible uses.
"In our discussions, it has always been the unanimous opinion of the group that this area should be kept as a green space of some type," she said.
Possible uses for the area included basketball courts, a splash pad, playground area with ADA accessible equipment or as a stopping for those using the walking trail that is to be built in the area.
Wynia said the committee was looking for some direction and a budget before moving forward on any specific recommendation. She said the plan could allow for additions to the area as time goes on and money becomes available.
Council member Matt Eischied said "no one (on the council) is comfortable putting out numbers at this time. This is a good topic for the upcoming council retreat."
Council members said that while the annual retreat is generally not a time for public input, members of the pool committee are welcome to attend and be available if the council had specific questions.
Council members also heard a report from Cap Peterson with Northeast Nebraska Insurance Agency on the 2018 Property & Casualty Insurance package.
Peterson went over information contained in the package and explained how some of the rates are determined.
He told the council that the property claims for the last five years include the damage caused by the tornado in 2013 and wind storm in 2014. These claims affect the cost of coverage but will be removed after five years.
The same is true of Worker's Compensation claims. The city's cost of coverage is based on an experience mod that looks at claims for the last three years. This number is very favorable to the city at this time because of the low number of claims submitted. However, in 2017 the city has had several large claims. This will not affect the cost of insurance for 2018, but will in the future.
The total package cost for the insurance, provided by Employers Mutual Company, is just over $310,000. This does include coverage for the Rural Fire Board for which the city is reimbursed.
Action was taken for a consulting/employment agreement with Nancy Braden. Braden is retiring as the city's Finance Director at the end of this year.
City Administrator Wes Blecke told the council that originally the city had hoped to have someone hired for Braden's position in early November. However, that was not the case. Beth Porter, who is replacing Braden, began her duties Dec. 4 and has not had time to become familiar with the duties of the position.
"Nancy has a lot of knowledge and we would like to have her come back in January as a consultant to provide Beth with additional training. This agreement allows her to work for the city during the month of January and be available during the month of February should questions arise," Blecke said.
Braden will be paid $12,000 for her services as an independent consultant and not entitled to any benefits.
Council members approved Resolution 2017-103 which approves the city's Wage and Salary schedule with a two percent cost of living adjustment.
Approval was also given for a resolution which approves the Community Development Block Grant Contract between the city of Wayne and Nebraska Department of Economic Development. The grant is for $350,000 and will be used for ADA improvements to sidewalks within the city.
Council members also set the dates for the annual retreat. The 2018 retreat will take place Friday, Feb. 3, beginning at 5:30 p.m. and Saturday, Feb. 3, beginning at 8:30 a.m. at the Wayne Senior Center.
The Wayne City Council will next meet in regular session on Tuesday, Jan. 2 at 5:30 p.m. in council chambers.