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by Mark Cheffey
The Palmyra City Council lasts Thursday agreed to change its bank depository agreement.
In addition, the council discussed moving ahead with a proposed ordinance covering fire inspections of commercial property and considered a property zoning variance request.
The council unanimously approved a DDA-MMDA deposit placement agreement with HOMEBANK through IntraFi Networks Deposits.
HOMEBANK, which provides bank deposit services for the city, requested the change as a way to handle city funds when they exceed the FDIC insured limit.
The council discussed the request at a previous meeting but tabled action until, James Lemon, the city attorney, could do some research to make sure the proposed agreement met state statue muster.
Lemon, Thursday, told the council the agreement does meet statutory requirements, opening the way for the council to move ahead with it.
Some council members expressed concern that, while the agreement may aid the bank, it might prove to be cumbersome for the city.
“To me it doesn’t sound like a good thing for the city,” said Brock Fahy, a council member.
However, while she said the agreement would be some challenges for bookkeeping, particularly with reconciling end-of-month balances, City Clerk Deena Parsons said she has had experience with such an agreement.
“HOMEBANK is not the only bank that’s done this,” Parsons said. “And, we have had this type of account before.”
“I don’t see any problem with this,” said Mayor Rusty Adrian in recommending approving the agreement.
It was also the consensus of the council to move ahead with finalizing an ordinance that would revise the city’s fire inspection requirements for commercial property.
There was some early indication the Palmyra Fire Protection District would provide inspection service for the city.
However, in a letter dated Nov. 25, the fire district notified the city it had decided to withdraw its “proposal for a Joint Powers Agreement for Fire & Safety Inspections within the city limits.”
As a result, Lemon recommended the city move ahead with approving ordinance changes that would give the responsibility for fire inspections to the police department, city inspector or someone designated by them.
The council heard the first reading of the ordinance earlier this year and is expected to take it up again at the next meeting, Dec. 15.
The council discussed a request from Bonnie Smith asking the city grant a zoning variance to allow her to own and operate an herbal relaxation treatment business at 616 South Main.
However, the issue was tabled until complete ownership of the property could be determined.
Parsons asked council members to look over the three financial advisor proposals made available to them.
The city is considering hiring a financial advisor to aid in helping with proposed projects to expand and upgrade the sewage treatment plant.
Fahy recommended holding a personnel committee meeting to discuss work-arounds for when city hall has to be closed due to employ illness like it was this past week.
Police Chief Eddie Bogue reported his department is getting closer to obtaining three new police cars ordered late last year.
He said the cars are being finished in Des Moines, Iowa, and that all three should be ready by the end of the year.
The cars have been held up due to a shortage of computer chips.
He also discussed with the council an issue with a resident seen driving carelessly and imprudently within the city limits numerous times of late.
He said, unless a police officer actually witnesses an incident, prosecution will depend on a witness stepping forward to issue a complaint.