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Winlock council finding forward financial motion

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Members of the Winlock City Council considered insurance alternatives with the goal of saving money during a workshop held before their July 8 meeting.

The city currently uses the Risk Management Services Agency through the Association of Washington Cities, and has since 1992. But they are also considering the Washington Cities Insurance Authority and the Cities Insurance Association of Washington.

The city’s current contract with AWC includes a no-surprises, zero-deductible policy not available elsewhere, though some claims such as recent damage to city sidewalks have not been covered by the policy. The final decision will be made after officials have had a chance to review their options.

The 2012 Year-End and 2013 Year-to-Date Budget was available for review with little comment.

Council Member Denise Green offered three motions: first, that the Council members donate back one-half of their council pay to the city water, sewer and street departments for four months to help cover costs incurred during efforts to conclude the First St. pipe replacement project, which the council passed. On that topic, Council Member Pat Anderson received confirmation that the transfer of donated funds agreed upon last meeting had been approved.

Second, that the Mayor's salary be reduced from $1,000 monthly to $250 monthly, effective next term, in observance of the economic challenges facing the city. The motion was "No reflection on the incumbent," Ms. Green said. The council approved her motion.

Third, that residents adversely affected by neighbors' eroding water and sewer lines crossing their property be addressed. Complaints of
broken lines flooding yards were deemed "not city business" as the ruptures occurred beyond the meters, the city's physical limit of responsibility. Despite lack of mention on deeds or titles regarding one owner's lines crossing another property, these rare easements are considered "prescriptive," presumed to have been agreed upon when the lines were installed in the 1940's. No one present was aware of local, state or federal statutes or ordinances regarding such a situation. No motion was voted on as this issue was deemed a civil matter.

Overgrown and neglected properties rounded out the last item of Old Business. Weed-covered lots and broken windows were cited as eyesores, attractive nuisances and health hazards for dumping, vandalism and rodent infestation. City Clerk Theda Curry was quick to establish a fast remedy for identified properties by promising to contact responsible parties for clean up. No motion was needed to approve this action.

It was reported Vader is seeking a temporary supervisor for their sewer plant for three weeks until the current contractor receives his certification. An intercity agreement already exists for emergency cooperation, and the estimated five hours per week could be covered by Dennis Baker, Winlock's certified Water/Sewer Superintendent, pending his agreement to work it as overtime. A motion made to act on the existing interlocal agreement was passed.

Resident Aaron Mummert asked the Council if they were aware of an upcoming event slated for the last weekend in July billed as "Green Cloud Camp-out" to be held outside city limits on Ferrier Rd. An Over-21 event featuring music and a few bawdy contests, the name alludes to the nature of the gathering, located approximately three miles beyond Winlock boundaries.

Resident Shawn Boren was on hand to seek a Revocable License Agreement for himself and Tim Adams to clean up and maintain an unused parcel South of Campbell abutting the Burlington tracks. The council granted his request, pending co-signer's signature.

Ordinance 1006, an interfund transfer, saw approval of $4,386 transferred from the Water Sewer Capital Improvement Fund (Fund #401) for expenses on the Front Street project and was passed.

The next council meeting is scheduled for July 22 at 7:15 p.m. in City Hall. Those with questions or in need of accommodations may call (360) 785-3811.

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