The Pioche Town Board meeting held on Valentine’s Day opened still shy one member. Chair Phyllis Robistow informed board members that the county commissioners have removed the review of new board members from their agenda, “until they actually get an application.” She added, “Maybe someone will volunteer.”
Rick Stever, Lincoln County Emergency Management, is making the rounds to all the town boards looking for assistance during emergencies. Vice chair Tom Brown stated that if given guidelines of what he wanted set up they would be more than willing to help. This was put on the agenda for next month.
A check was received to be used for the upkeep of the American Legion Memorial. Board members agreed this needs to be tracked, so it is not spent elsewhere. Town Manager Nathan Adams suggested it could be used to fix the lighting on the memorial.
To get a bigger pool of applicants for the swimming pool manager, a vote was passed to reopen the application and interview process. Also, as Tayler Riefsnyder, secretary to the board, is interested in the position, figures were to be obtained on how changing her status up from part-time should affect the town budget.
Brown reported that the offer to purchase the Washington Federal building did not produce fruit.
Melinda Rabender and Cameron Boyce appealed to the board regarding the billing and reimbursement of a shared transformer on a line extension. In 2016, the board changed their policy on reimbursements, but the Boyce agreement fell before that date. Rabender was not informed up front, but was later billed.
Previous legal counsel had been sought by Pioche Public Utilities (PPU) and their responsibility in this matter. The board agreed the oversight was the town’s and the town would pay the reimbursement.
Robistow thanked the concerned parties for “being cool” while this matter was being resolved.
Even though there are different people sitting on the board now than when the old reimbursement was made, Glennon Zelch included better documentation as part of his motion. Robistow said this will help future boards.
Concerning callout hours for the PPU, Deputy District Attorney Franklin Katschke advised that it is not a matter of labor law but administrative policy. A vote passed for one hour minimum call out or actual time worked, whichever is greater.
As Pioche is running at a deficit, a vote to raise property taxes by .3245 passed. That’s 32 cents and a fraction per $1,000 assessed value.
Before voting whether or not to transfer Pioche utilities to county power or water districts, Brown and others wanted to know if there was a legal way to keep the capital improvement and operating funds. Could they be put in the water and sewer budget? Transferred to the town budget? Passed on as savings to customers?
Also, before the vote Robistow and others wanted a scoping meeting with more town people present as this is an important decision. Adams said, “We can’t drag our feet on this.” It was agreed that more than one meeting a month was needed.
Adams mentioned thank-you letters to be sent to those who volunteered time and equipment to clear the roads of snow. Robistow said, “We did good this winter with the help that we got.”
March’s board meeting has been changed to the 21st.