CITY OF FORT SCOTT
SPECIAL CITY COMMISSION MEETING
Minutes of July 19th, 2021 Special Meeting #16
A special meeting of the Fort Scott City Commission was held July 19th, 2021 at 5:30 p.m. in the City Commission Meeting Room, 123 S. Main Street, Fort Scott, Kansas.
Commissioners Kevin Allen, Pete Allen, and Randy Nichols were present with Mayor Josh Jones presiding. Lindsey Watts arrived at 5:34 p.m.
AUDIENCE IN ATTENDANCE: Dave Bruner, Bill Lemke, Lynette Westhoff, Travis Shelton, Tim Harper, Merl Humphrey, David B. Lipe, Patrick Wood, Trent Freeman, Kate Emmett-Sweetser, David Saker, John Bowman, Alex Bowman, Judy Warren, Michael Hoyt, Bobbi Kemna, Carl Brates, Allyson Turvey, Jimmy Kemmerer, Rob Harrington, Susan Bancroft, and representing the press, Tammy Helm, Fort Scott Tribune.
Consideration of Resolution No. 16-2021 regarding the Governing Body’s intent to levy a property tax exceeding the revenue neutral rate – Susan Bancroft, Director of Finance, informed the Commission that this will allow the Governing Body to exceed the revenue neutral rate. The revenue neutral rate is currently 46.963 mills. What the City has looked at for the 2022 budget is a proposed mill levy of 47.701 mills. This will keep the mill levy flat. This gives the Commission more time to evaluate the budget and extends the time to send the budget to the County Clerk. If assessed, valuations go up at the end of October, you can capture those dollars at that time. This gives us the opportunity to hold a special hearing on September 7th, 2021 at 6:15 p.m. The budget has to be in to the County Clerk by October 1st in leu of August 25th. This just gives us more time to evaluate items for the budget.
R. Nichols moved to approve Resolution No. 16-2021 regarding the Governing Body’s intent to levy a property tax exceeding the revenue neutral rate. K. Allen seconded. All voted aye.
APPROVED RESOLUTION NO. 16-2021 OF THE CITY OF FORT SCOTT, KANSAS REGARDING THE GOVERNING BODY’S INTENT TO LEVY A PROPERTY TAX EXCEEDING THE REVENUE NEUTRAL RATE AND HOLD A PUBLIC HEARING ON SEPTEMBER 7TH, 2021 AT 6:15 P.M.
Consideration of Resolution No. 17-2021 – Emergency Resolution for Alleged Unsafe and Dangerous Structure location at 14 N. National Avenue – City Attorney said that we are faced with a public emergency that happened and we need to resolve it safely. The Eagle Block Building at 10 N. National actually belonged to the Land Bank. He has a deed prepared to sign it back to the City and then the City can proceed with the building. The CDL building, who is just the tenant, is located at 14 N. National Avenue. This sets a public hearing tomorrow at your regularly scheduled meeting and tells the public to show up and hear what will be said about the building. The building has been reviewed and the engineers have said it is unsafe. This sets the public hearing for July 20th, 2021 at 6:15 p.m. No decisions can be made tonight.
K. Allen moved to approve Resolution No. 17-2021 to set an emergency public hearing on July 20th, 2021 at 6:15 p.m. for the building at 14 N. National Avenue. P. Allen seconded. All voted aye.
APPROVED RESOLUTION NO. 17-2021 – RESOLUTION FOR ALLEGED UNSAFE AND DANGEROUS STRUCTURE LOCATED AT 14 N. NATIONAL AVENUE (CDL BUILDING) – PUBLIC HEARING DATE 7/20/2021 – 6:15 P.M.
Discussion of Eagle Block Building – City Manager said that the damage took a turn for the worse in a very short period of time. The engineer has came in and reviewed the building. The engineer has deemed it is unsafe and cannot be saved. There is one bid that was received. He said he had a company reach out to him and could get him a bid by next Wednesday.
Josh said that there was a representative here from American Wrecking Service regarding their bid. His name is Carl Brates. The base bid for the Eagle Block building is $148,500 to include the CDL building also. They can start right away with a week of good weather and it should be completed.
City Manager said after reviewing the building that CDL occupied, he asked for an additional quote.
Kevin asked about liability insurance and to make sure the City is protected. Discussion was held about the demolition materials and where they would be taken to. He doesn’t want to see it used for fill material.
Discussion was held regarding the American Wrecking bid proposal.
Pete said that he would like to see a contract drawn up by our City Engineer. He would also like to see additional bidders.
Mr. Brates said as soon as he has a contract, he will get the City his insurance.
Lindsey said that we need to move forward as quickly as possible on this project.
City Manager said that he has the engineering report he just received from Earles Engineering. He will share that with American Wrecking Company.
Patrick Wood asked if the contractor will do anything to finish off the walls. He asked if the engineers looked at the brick source as there are different types. He said that this should be bid out also.
Trent Freeman said that he owns the Hammons building. He just had the roof repaired and people coming in to work this week on the building. He is concerned with what happened on the CDL building and what could happen to his building. He would like to see a timeline of this project.
Josh said they want to work as quickly as possibly and get the demolition started and work with the engineer.
Kevin said that he missed one of the meetings and he would like to see the wall that is remaining shoved into the basement.
Rob Harrington said that he had an update on the CDBG Grant. Rob said that he talked on the phone with officials today from several State offices. The Eagle Block building has been approved for tax credits. They are 20% tax credits but it is only available if the façade is kept. They are selling at 95% of the cost on the market. The State would also need a copy of the engineering report. He said when the roof collapsed originally the Urgent Need grant should have been filed. They will use the two buildings close by for the Urgent Need Grant as it could cause catastrophic damage to these buildings. The Heritage Trust Fund could also help with the buildings. He said that there were two applications submitted for Urgent Need by the City. One was submitted by Rachel Pruitt and he submitted one. The State has asked that only one be submitted. He will need the engineering report and final numbers for the building to submit to the State. He discussed possible tax credits but again that is only if you keep the façade.
Susan discussed the past downtown fire and lessons the City learned.
The Commission wants Rob Harrington to apply for the Urgent Need Grant on behalf of the City.
City Manager said that the City didn’t apply two times. There were calls made to the State by himself and Rachel.
Rob said that as for monies to reimburse any lost revenue the State has no programs to cover that loss. They mentioned the Revolving Loan fund. Susan said that fund is depleted. That was all the State could suggest.
Josh said that David Toland, Assistant Attorney General, was here on Sunday and met with them.
Dave Lipe said that Sharky’s is his main income and he has 27 employees who live paycheck to paycheck.. He can’t wait a long time. He said that the Commission has to be proactive.
The Commission thanked Mr. Lipe for working with the City.
K. Allen moved to adjourn the special meeting at 6:14 p.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye.
ADJOURNED MEETING AT 6:14 P.M.
Diane K. Clay, M.M.C.