The Carmi City Council met Monday, January 21, 2014 at 5:30 p.m. in the Council Room of the Municipal Building, 225 East Main Street, Carmi, Illinois.
Prior to opening the Council meeting, Mayor Pollard asked Alderman Steve Winkleman to give the invocation. The prayer was followed by the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mayor Pollard presided with the following Aldermen present: Steve Winkleman, Mark W. Blake, Keith Davis, Kenny Carter, Sheila Jo Headlee, Doug Hays, Jack Lamont and Mike Knight.
Minutes for the January 6, 2014 Council Meeting were presented. A motion was made by Alderman Hays and seconded by Alderman Davis to approve the minutes as presented. The motion carried on roll call by each Alderman answering “yes.”
December 2013 financial reports for the City of Carmi and Carmi Light and Water Departments were presented for approval. Motion made by Alderman Headlee and seconded by Alderman Winkleman to approve the financial reports as presented. The motion carried on roll call by each Alderman answering “yes.”
Vendor invoices for the City of Carmi and Carmi Light & Water Departments payable in January 2014 were presented for approval. No comments or questions were expressed by Alderman regarding the vendor invoices. Motion by Alderman Winkleman and seconded by Alderman Blake to approve and authorize payment of the January 2014 vendor invoices. The motion carried on roll call by each Alderman answering “yes.”
Alderman Hays Chairman of the Police Department Committee presented to Council the purchase of new police vehicle’s for use by the Police Department with the purchase being made utilizing the state bid process. Alderman Hays presented the following:
Police vehicle’s considered by Police Department Committee:
Dodge Ram 1500 Crew Cab 4×4 w/ 5.7 engine; $23,597.00
Dodge Ram 1500 Crew Cab 4×4 w/ 5.7 engine & Ram Cargo Boxes; $24,697.00
Chevy Tahoe 2 wheel drive w/ 5.3 engine; $23,856.00
Chevy Tahoe 4×4 w/ 5.3 engine; $29,305.00
Chevy Caprice w/ 6.0 engine; $26,087.00
Ford F150 Crew Cab 4×4 w/ 5.0 engine $24,888.00
Alderman Hays noted that these vehicles were given first consideration, due to the size constraints of the current cars on the market. The police cars on the market today would have very little room in them after all the police equipment was installed and an officer placed all their necessary gear in that car.
Alderman Hays requested the approval to purchase the Dodge Ram Crew Cab 4×4 w/ 5.7 engine along with the Ram Cargo Boxes and police package. He noted that the White County Sherriff’s Department was utilizing the exact same truck and was very pleased with it as a patrol unit. The Dodge truck would be put first in the rotation of police vehicles which are typically used for seven (7) years in the rotation and then would be rotated into use by another department within the city. If the truck was not rolled into use by another department within the city and it was decided it was best to sell the truck it would hold its resell value better than the cars.
Alderman Hays presented to Council that he would like to purchase not one (1) but two (2) of the Dodge Ram Crew Cab 4×4’s this year, due to the pricing being held over from 2013, availability, ability to roll into other city departments, the 4×4’s use in inclement weather and one (1) of the trucks would be designated for use by the next Chief of Police Jason Carter; which would cause less wear on the truck and making it last longer than a police vehicle put into rotation. Alderman Hays believes having the Chief of Police designated to drive the truck solely it will last for approximately fifteen (15) years and until Chief of Police Jason Carter were to retire and that the city would be able to skip one (1) year possibly two (2) years of purchasing a new police vehicle. Mayor Pollard questioned if there would be a purchase of a new police vehicle next year? Alderman Hays answered that he would like to be able to skip next year but felt like he could not promise that there would not be a vehicle purchased next year. Alderman Winkleman questioned if he really believed that the truck Chief Carter would be using would last for fifteen (15) years? Alderman Hays answered that he did believe it would because it would not have the wear on it that the other vehicles in rotation normally have. Alderman Winkleman believes that a lot of things will happen and go wrong with the truck in fifteen (15) years and will not last that long. Alderman Winkleman questioned what vehicle Jason Carter was driving currently? Jason Carter answered a 2010 Ford Crown Victoria. Alderman Hays noted that the idea of buying a new police vehicle every year helps to keep the cost of repairs down, in the last five years the city has put a new engine in a Dodge Durango then given to the Fire Chief and a transmission in a Ford Crown Victoria then given to the airport as a courtesy vehicle to pilots. Alderman Headlee questioned if the 2010 Ford Crown Victoria currently driven by Jason Carter would be sold? Alderman Hays answered that his plan was to sell the 2008 Ford Crown Victoria currently in rotation and the 2009 Ford Crown Victoria currently used by Chief of Police Randy Hamblin, due to them having a better resale value and the 2010 would remain a Sargent’s vehicle. Alderman Davis questioned what would the cost be to get the trucks equipped and ready for service? Alderman Headlee answered around $4,000.00 to $5,000.00. Alderman Blake noted that the truck Chief Jason Carter would be using did not need all of the same equipment that the patrol truck would need, therefore being cheaper to equip and be ready for service. Mayor Pollard questioned how much money was in the Police Department’s collection fund that would be used for the trucks? Alderman Hays answered between $6,000.00 and $7,000.00 which would pay for the trucks getting equipped and ready for service. Alderman Winkleman asked for further explanation of how Alderman Hays believed that purchasing two trucks now would save the city $75,000.00? Alderman Hays answered that skipping two years of purchasing new police vehicles in the next five to ten years would save that amount of money.
Alderman Lamont commented that he believed they should purchase new vehicles for the Police Department but purchasing trucks would lead to using more fuel, that 4×4 trucks did not get around in inclement weather all that well because of the rear end being lighter and if they were a good fit for a Police Department then the Illinois State Police would be using them. Alderman Hays answered that the reason the Illinois State Police did not use trucks was because they put a lot of highway miles on their vehicles and they did use Chevy Tahoe’s in their fleet. Chief of Police Randy Hamblin has a computer program that tracks fuel usage per mile and all of the vehicles currently used in the Police Department were getting ten (10) miles per gallon, due to being used in town and not on the highway like the Illinois State Police. Alderman Blake noted the way the city could save money on police vehicles was to adopt what the Illinois State Police are doing and that was to have each police officer be designated a vehicle that they used solely. Alderman Hays agreed and would like the next police vehicle purchased be given to the investigator, which he believes would last the investigator to retirement. Alderman Lamont noted that the city did have the Humvee to use in inclement weather. Chief Jason Carter commented that they had used it several times this year but it did not have any heat. Alderman Winkleman commented that it has worked really well for the city to purchase a new police vehicle every year and he was afraid that it would be very difficult to skip a year and the city purchases used vehicles for all the other departments in the city, but the Police Department keeps getting new vehicles. Alderman Hays noted that when a police vehicle goes down it puts a major strain on the Police Department and the Police Department has to have vehicles that are ready to respond at any given moment. Alderman Winkleman noted that the city had budgeted $50,000.00 to purchase new police vehicles in 2013 and came in $20,000.00 under budget and if two (2) trucks were purchased would be approximately $50,000.00 for 2014. Mayor Pollard suggested that Alderman Hays make a motion to purchase the trucks separately instead of in a package deal, that way it was a fair vote to each Council member. Alderman Carter noted that he thought purchasing trucks would be advantageous to the city to rotate them out of police service after seven (7) years into another city department and that their resale value would be better than a car when it came time to sell them.
Motion made by Alderman Hays and seconded by Alderman Headlee to purchase a Dodge Ram Crew Cab 4×4 w/ 5.7 engine and Ram Cargo Boxes to be utilized as a patrol vehicle to be put into rotation. The motion carried on roll call with each Alderman answering “yes” with the exception of Alderman Lamont answering “no.”
Motion made by Alderman Hays and seconded by Alderman Blake to purchase a second Dodge Ram Crew Cab 4×4 w/ 5.7 engine and Ram Cargo Boxes to be utilized by the City of Carmi Chief of Police Jason Carter solely. The motion carried on roll call with each Alderman answering “yes” with the exception of Alderman Knight and Alderman Lamont answering “no.”
Reports and/or updates from Mayor Pollard
Mayor Pollard thanked the city crews for their continued efforts in the removal of snow from the city streets and sidewalks.
Mayor Pollard reminded the Council and the citizens that there would be a meeting to plan for the City of Carmi’s Bicentennial celebration on Monday, January 27th at 6:00 p.m. in the council chambers.
City Supervisor Mike Buckman
Mr. Buckman reported that an inspection was done on the city’s fire hydrants recently by ISO (Insurance Service Office); ISO is a community fire protection service. The representative from ISO was impressed with the GPS (Global Positioning System) mapping of the fire hydrants that the city had completed last year with the assistance of an intern from Lamac Engineering. The representative commented to Mr. Buckman that communities the size of Carmi did not normally have this type of mapping done and that it was very beneficial to his report. Mr. Buckman thanked the Mayor and Council for approving the mapping to be completed last year. The ISO report showed that the City of Carmi fell into the average percentile and that the city would be working to improve its percentile in the near future. The result of the improvement would be better water pressure at fire hydrants, more fire hydrants in key areas and to hopefully lower resident’s premium on their home owners insurance. Mr. Buckman also noted that the heat imaging equipment purchased for the Fire Department helped with the total score from the ISO report.
Mr. Buckman asked each Alderman to let him know if there were any work orders in their Ward that needed to be completed and if there were to get with him so he could make sure that they would get completed.
Reports from Standing Committees
Alderman Knight reported that he has been getting more information on handicap playground equipment and is looking at a park in Owensboro, Kentucky that is an excellent example of what he would like to see available for Carmi.
Alderman Lamont questioned if trash was being picked up on a normal schedule, due to the Martin Luther King holiday? Mayor Pollard answered that the trash pickup was on its normal schedule.
Alderman Winkleman questioned were could citizens get a replacement trash can? Mayor Pollard answered that the Street and Alley Department had extras and Mr. Buckman asked that they call the city offices and a work order would be placed for the Street and Alley Department to deliver a trash can to them.
Business or Comments from Visitors
Mr. Greg Hays Director of the Phoenix Hospital Foundation thanked the Mayor and Council for allowing city crews to help with the building of the Elastec American Marine Helipad at the hospital grounds. Mr. Hays noted that the helipad had taken its inaugural flight on January 19th, flying a patient to an Evansville, Indiana hospital and that the patient was released from the hospital and doing fine. Mr. Hays also invited the Mayor, Council and City Officials to take a tour on Monday, January 27th from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the hospital to see the progress that has been made in the last few years.
Motion by Alderman Lamont and seconded by Alderman Hays to adjourn. The motion carried on roll call by each Alderman answering “yes.”
At 6:24 p.m., the Council adjourned.
Brian K. Allen, City Clerk
Jeff Pollard, Mayor