PENTWATER — At the regular meeting of the Pentwater Village Council Dec. 9, council approved an Installment Purchase Agreement to reimburse the general fund for the cost of purchasing the new village hall property at 65 N. Hancock St.
The agreement will be issued to Shelby State Bank in the principal amount of $350,000, bearing interest at the rate of 2.55 percent per annum, and providing for 120 monthly payments of principal and interest to be paid commencing Jan. 20, 2020 for a 15-year term. This approach will save the village $20,000 over issuance of a bond for the costs incurred.
A budget amendment was approved for the cost of the purchase, and it was noted that an additional $350,000 Installment Purchase Agreement will be considered for necessary improvements to the property to accommodate the needs of the village and Police Department in the building. In addition, council awarded an agreement for architectural services to Harbor Design and Construction in an amount of $10,720, for the preparation of the required drawings for obtaining permits for construction of the improvements. A resident raised the concern that the village and township are not moving forward on this project jointly, and various members of the council reiterated the village’s ongoing desire to work with the township, but also the village’s intent to move forward on this project in a timely manner. President Jeff Hodges stated that the village has made every good faith effort to work with the township, but the township has informed the village that it is moving out of the current village hall and has not agreed to participate with the village in the new building. He encouraged concerned residents to attend township meetings and request that the township change its position, but in the meantime, the village is not slowing down in preparing the new building for occupancy, hopefully next fall.
Village Manager Chris Brown noted that leaf pick-up was not completed this fall due to snow and freezing weather, and the work cannot be completed without damaging village equipment. Pick up will be as early as possible in the spring after snow is gone. He also complimented the Downtown Development Authority on the beautiful decorations creating a festive look in the village.
Zoning Administrator Keith Edwards reported that the planning commission recently heard a presentation by Fleis & Vandenbrink Engineers, concerning the Complete Streets Cross-Section Design Concepts for Lowell and Carroll streets. This will be referred to the Services Committee. Edwards also advised the council that 8-10 more zoning permits were issued this year than last year, with more still coming in, but there seems to be a shortage of contractors to do the work. Finally, he indicated that the work of the Vision Team on the Community Assessment, Visitor’s Pool and Community Survey has been completed and over 750 responses were received and tallied. A public town hall-style meeting will be Monday, Dec. 16 at 5:30 p.m. at First Baptist Church to allow Julie Hales-Smith, who has been consulting with the Vision Team, to present the results. The council approved $800 to cover the additional costs.
Police Chief Laude Hartrum presented monthly activity highlights and also stated that there have been several reports of homeless people sleeping in public restrooms. The department is attempting to find housing for these individuals. Also, winter parking restrictions are in effect, and no parking is allowed on village streets between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. between November and March. One ticket has already been issued. He further noted that the department is accepting property check requests. Forms are available at village hall.
In other business, the village council approved the following:
A final payment of $116,642.08 to Hallack Contracting for the 2018 Street and Utility Improvement Project, and a payment of $36,668.23 on the 2019 Project. It was noted that the village is retaining over $65,000 on the 2019 Project for remaining punch list items.
The $12,250 proposal of Roslund Prestige & Company for the first year of auditing services with the possibility of renewal for two more years at proposed prices.
A resolution supporting the Pentwater Hart Trail TAP (Transportation Alternatives Program) Grant Application and a village donation of $5,000 toward the required matching funds.
A resolution for Declaration of Shoreline Disaster Request asking the Governor and State Legislature to seek a declaration of the shoreline in the State of Michigan as a disaster area and seek assistance from Congress and the President of the United States for this devastating situation of state-wide impact. Hartrum noted that in addition to shoreline issues, the village also is experiencing high water east and west of Longbridge and at Charlie’s Marina that will need to be addressed.
Objection to any transfer of the foreclosed property at 813 East Sixth Street to the village. Upon this objection, the property will be transferred to the Oceana County Land Bank Authority for future planning or sale.
Reappointment of Mike Castor to the planing commission, with Trustee Michelle Angell-Powell voting nay.
Appointment of Mary Schumaker as chair and Buz Graettinger, Michael Haack and Jim Henley as members of the Downtown Development Authority.
As recommended by the personnel committee after an annual review, a 3 percent salary increase for Village Clerk/Treasurer Rande Listerman, raising her salary to $55,620. It was also noted that the personnel committee has asked the village manager to conduct an annual review of all salaried personnel.