BELOIT CITY COUNCIL – Wednesday, January 18, 2023

By Terry Bailey

The Beloit City Council conducted their business meeting Wednesday, January 18th at City Hall. Counselors Gengler, Meier, Grabon and Staples were present in person and Councilor Adolph participated via a zoom connection. Also in attendance were Mayor Naasz, City Attorney Schroeder, City Manager Rabe, and City Clerk Lomax. Absent was Councilor McMillian.
City Attorney Schroeder reported that she had looked through all the Senate and House bills and she did not see anything problematic.
City Manager Rabe reported there has been interest in the moderate-income housing grant program. He said the that the owner of the property at 113 East 2nd is working to clean up the property before the sale is final. This is the location for the parking lot expansion.
Councilors were reminded that the deadline to file for an office is noon on June 1st. Anyone interested in running for an office should check with the County Clerk.
City Engineer Stewart Porter and Jeff Shamburg of Tetra Tech provided a detailed and complete report on the water treatment plant. They provided video slides, charts, and diagrams in a detailed fashion of the plant. Inflation has added dramatically to the final cost.
The council approved an increase in the cost for the engineering of the plant. Schwab-Eaton's share was $29,000. Tetra Tech, the major engineers for the water plant, was awarded $179,000.
Police Chief David Elam was present to provide the yearly report on activity of the Beloit Police Force. Officers wrote 317 citations for the last year.
Economic Development Director Emily Benedick told the Council that an intern will once again spend the summer in Beloit. Dane Hanson will contribute to the salary of the intern and SVED and the City will also provide funds for the intern. This has been a very successful program in the past The intern will be paid $18 an hour.
The Council approved the GAAP accounting waiver.
Andrew Grabon was once again appointed as Council president.
Rabe gave the Council an overview of the details of the City's financial policy and the Council voted to approve the financial policy as presented.
The City has 12,064 water meters. At one time the meters were read by one person looking at each meter and recording the numbers. In 2012 the current meters were installed. A low-level network sends a signal to the water computer at the main location. This saved the City a lot of money. However, this system is ten years old and in a hole in the ground. About 18 months ago the system has become problematic. It is taking a log of staff time to nurse the program along.
Rabe informed the Council that the enire system needs to be replaced with much more efficient water meters and a low-level computer recording network. Rabe said, "This system will pay for itself in a year or two." The Council approved the installation of the new meters and computer monitoring network.
The Council conducted a ten-minute executive session. No decisions were made as a result of that closed session.
City attorney Katie Schroeder gave the Council an overview of the Land Bank. She said it has been successful in helping the City demo structures that have become a blight on the City.