An important item on the Signal Mountain Council’s meeting agenda for Monday night was tabled until the next meeting, anticipating that all five council members will present. That was done because Mayor Dan Landrum was concerned with appearances of a vote by just three council members. Both Vice Mayor Amy Speek and Councilmember Robert Spalding were absent.
An ordinance that will establish a new rate schedule, water rates and fees for the Signal Mountain Water Utility that is proposed to begin July 1, 2019 was slated to be voted on first reading at the meeting.
A study by the Municipal Technical Advisory Service (MTAS) determined that a water rate increase was needed
· Tap fees would be $900 for 5/8 inch and ¾ inch meters, $1,100 for 1 inch and $3,000 for 2 inch meters.
· Inside town limits, a service activation fee would be $50, monthly service fees for all meters would be $6 and the water usage charge would be $5.80 per 1,000 gallons.
· Outside town limits, the Service Activation fee would be $60, Monthly service fees for all meters would be $7.20 and the water usage charge per 1,000 gallons would be $6.96.
· Fees have also been set for delinquent bills and miscellaneous charges.
Council member Bill Lusk said his concern was that the council keeps moving it down the road. He said enough has been presented to justify the rate increase. Town Manager Boyd Veal said that waiting two weeks for the first vote posed no danger to the water company. He said that he would continue working on things based on what he expects will happen. He also anticipates that the discussion about whether to continue owning and maintaining the system or sell it, will be part of the discussion surrounding the first reading of the ordinance which will take place in two weeks on April 8.
Three resolutions were passed Monday night. Pre-65 age retirees from the city will continue to have the option of health insurance coverage under the local government insurance plan through the state of Tennessee, provided they cover the full cost of the premiums. This provides them with the advantage of a group rate.
Police Chief Mike Williams was authorized to apply for a Tennessee Highway Safety Office grant, not to exceed $15,000. The city applies for this grant and receives it each year, said the city manager. The grant will pay for overtime and equipment used to reduce speeding, aggressive driving, DUI, and non-seatbelt use. This is a 100 percent grant that requires no matching funds from the city.
Two Signal Mountain residents were approved as members of the city’s design review commission, Cheryl Graham and Claire Griesinger.
The kick-off celebration for the town of Signal Mountain’s centennial year is April 4 at Alexian from 4-7 p.m. Historical photos will be on display and there will be a choral history presentation by Thrasher Elementary students. All residents are invited.