By Tammy Gray
A grant application for $91,390 to create a designated trail at the city’s Hidden Cove Petroglyph Park was approved by the city council Tuesday evening.
Finance Director Randy Sullivan explained that the city must provide a $14,635 match if the grant is awarded, but much of that can be provided through in-kind services, such as labor to create the path.
“Most of the city match will be in-kind,” he said.
The total includes improving the existing trail, installing trail markers and interpretive signs, benches, trash receptacles and steel steps. The grant would also provide funding for the creation and establishment of new trails, and for replacement of vegetation disturbed during the trail-building process.
Sullivan told the council that a state historic preservation assessment has already been completed, and the grant application is the next step in turning the area into a usable park and preserving the petroglyphs.
Council members unanimously approved submitting the grant application.
The council also held the first reading of an ordinance that would allow the city to sell packs that include guides and information about the petroglyph park to the public at a rate of $6 each.
Sullivan explained that the city had obtained 5,000 of the guides through a grant and had been loaning them out, but had several inquiries about their purchase. He asked that the council set a price at least high enough to replace them as they are sold. The cost to the city to replace them is $5.99, but Sullivan asked that a round number be used to make transactions simple.
The council could not take any action, but will vote on the ordinance at the next scheduled meeting.
In other action Oct. 28, the council:
* Approved the donation of $400 and surplus candy to the Elks Lodge for the Spooktacular Halloween party.
Sullivan noted that the item was included in the city’s budget.
* Approved an amendment to the Arizona mutual aid compact.
Changes to the agreement clarify reimbursement procedures in the event of a major emergency or catastrophic event.
* Approved an agreement with Katrina Tafoya Jaime for use of the community building for dance lessons at a rate of $25 per month.
City Clerk Cher Reyes noted that Jaime is responsible for providing her own insurance.
* Held the first reading of an ordinance establishing an extension of Diamond Back Drive.
* Approved changes to a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) plan for improvements to the Holbrook Senior Center.
Reyes explained that the contractor estimated costs at more than $22,000 beyond the available funding. As a result, changes were made to the plans to reduce costs. Among the changes are the elimination of a new concrete pad and four windows planned for the cafeteria. She noted that the city will make plans to pour the concrete as a separate project at a later date.
* Approved the expenditure of up to $7,675.10 to Dana Kepner as a sole source provider for a new meter reader unit.
City Manager Ray Alley told the council that having a second meter reader will allow staff to complete the job faster and ultimately reduce costs by making personnel available for other projects.
* Approved the expenditure of up to $6,354.39 for emergency repairs to the pump at lift station number two.
Alley explained that the repairs have already been completed and were necessary to ensure that the city has a back-up pump readily available in case of a failure of the main pump.
* Approved the expenditure of up to $12,416 and declared UV Doctor as a sole source provider for UV bulbs for the wastewater treatment plant.
* Approved an agreement with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality that allows the city to issue burn permits.
Alley noted that permits will be issued at city hall for the convenience of both the public and the fire department. He told the council that approved permits will be issued on the same day they are requested and residents will not have to wait for the fire chief to be available to sign the permits.
* Approved the expenditure of up to $8,194.50 for new computers for the police department.
Alley explained that the computers have already been purchased, but were purchased in small groups that were under the threshold for council approval. He noted that when Reyes noticed that the total purchase exceeded the $5,000 limit for council approval, the matter was brought to the council.
“On a per purchase basis it wasn’t over the limit, but the total was,” he noted. “It was in the budget.”
Reyes told the council that the purchases were not made through the state contract, but she is working on ensuring that future ones are bought utilizing the contract.
* Approved repairs to the Vac-Con truck in an amount not to exceed $2,355.27 for body repairs and $9,201.33 for mechanical repairs.
Holbrook resident Leo Maestas told the council that he believed the damage to be caused by two accidents in which the equipment was involved and he would be pursuing the matter further.
Alley told the council that the body damage and mechanical damage have two separate causes. He explained that the vehicle became stuck in the mud while performing work on a sewer line about a year and a half ago, and attempts to tow it out resulted in a crack in the fiberglass hood. According to Alley, the damage was cosmetic and the truck has been in heavy use since that time. He explained that the mechanical repairs are a result of normal wear and tear on a complicated piece of heavy equipment that is used at least every other day.
He advised the council that he made the decision that while the truck is in the shop for mechanical repairs, the hood should be repaired as well. He noted that an insurance claim was not filed for the hood because it was not the result of a motor vehicle accident or property damage, and it did not affect the operation of the truck.
* Held a public hearing on the proposed alternative expenditure limitation. No members of the public spoke on the matter.
A second public hearing on the proposed alternative expenditure limitation is set for 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 4, at city hall. A special city council meeting to vote on the issue will follow at 6 p.m.
The regular city council meeting set for Nov. 11 has been rescheduled to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 18, at city hall to avoid a conflict with the observance of Veterans Day. Council members also agreed to cancel the meeting scheduled for Dec. 23.