Albia Mayor Richard Clark introduced the city’s new police chief at Tuesday’s council meeting. After receiving 10 applications, inviting five to interview and interviewing four applicants, Assistant Chief Brad Evinger was chosen as the new chief.
Mayor Clark assembled a committee that included City Attorney Bob Breckenridge, County Attorney John Pabst, Retired State Trooper Rick Weidman and Monroe County Sheriff Dan Johnson. Mayor Clark said they were unanimous in selecting Evinger.
Evinger was at the meeting to discuss the purchase of new 9mm handguns for the department. The department’s service revolvers are about 10 years old and the useful life of a service revolver is recommended at no more than five years. Evinger said in the last fire arms training held a week ago, a couple of the revolvers had firing issues.
The cost of the weapon is $429 with a $225 trade-in. Total cost to the department will be $1,224. The new revolvers will fit into the current duty holsters. He added that in purchasing new ammunition at a lower cost, the cost of the new revolvers will be paid for in six years. Evinger said the new guns would be here in January.
Council woman Leslie Hill brought a proposed change in the city’s parking ordinance before the council for consideration. Hill wants to limit parking in residential areas to hard surface (concrete, asphalt, pavers or gravel) areas and make illegal parking cars in front yards of residences.
Currently the city ordinance does not address parking operable vehicles in yards. In her letter to the council, Hill said “storing too many vehicles on a residential lot may cause your property to look cluttered and to lose value.” Hill said there are many residents in Albia who park extra cars in their yards. Asked where a person should park if they don’t have room on a parking pad, Hill said the street.
Mayor Clark reminded Hill that during snow falls the city street crews have difficulty removing snow if vehicles are parked on the street.
The council referred the request by Hill to City Attorney Breckenridge who will prepare an ordinance for consideration at the next council meeting.
The retirement of long time sanitation commissioner Bill Murphy was announced and advertising for his replacement approved. Murphy will be retiring in November.
In other council business:
• Referred changes in a swimming pool fencing ordinance back to Breckenridge.
• Approved entering into a Sewer Revenue Loan and Disbursement Agreement (a zero interest loan to pay for planning and design) of $200,000.
• Approved a 20 percent increase in sewer charges.
• Approved converting the four-lane on Highway 5 south to three lanes when the Iowa Department of Transportation begins a repaving project next year.
• Approved upgrading the city’s computer operating system from OS 7 to OS 10 as well as upgrading its internet service.
• Referred a request for an alley closing to Planning and Zoning. The alley runs north and south behind the former Dale Derby property.
• Approved six mowing cost assessments of $300 each: 222 S. 2nd; 21 11th Ave. W.; 115 D. Ave. W.; 113 Benton Ave. W.; 414 North Clinton; 216 A Ave. E.