NewsOctober 03 2018

Referendum Petition filed with city determined to be invalid

Posted by Lucy

Referendum Petition filed with city determined to be invalid 
By Lucy Halverson/LCH
   The Presho City Council rejected a municipal referendum petition filed by Dan Meyer to put the sewer project to a vote of the people of Presho during their Monday night meeting. The decision was based on the city’s attorney opinion that the petition was invalid and not compliant with state statues. 
   According to state laws (2-1-9 and 9-20-9), the petition didn’t not meet the requirements of requisite heading and verification on all pages. It was a three-page copy of an official petition, not a self contained petition. The deadline to file a referendum petition is 20 days after the publication of an action taken by the city council. Mayor Mike Sprenger informed the council that Meyer had been contacted regarding the invalid petition.  
   Terry Aaker of SPN Engineering was not present at the meeting to give an update on the project plans. Sprenger stated he has been in contract with SPN and the plan is still being completed. The city has received a grant, and loan forgiveness from the state to fund the project, although an increase in sewer/water rates is expected to fund the improvement project.  
   This project will not raise taxes,” said Angela Ehlers. “Sewer fees will go up but the amount at this time is not know.” 
   It probably wouldn’t hurt to educate people a little more,” said Carl Brakke, referring to the project that will replace the sewer system in much of the town, and redo Main Street.  
   Ehlers stated some Main Street property owners have questioned what their responsibilities will be regarding sidewalk replacement. 
   We do need public meetings on how we’re going to implement the project,” said Ehlers. 
   The bid of $240,967 for the Sidewalk Project was awarded by the state to Sharpe Enterprises of Fort Pierre on Monday, Sept. 24. The council discussed the project and the process that has been in the works for the past four years. The city of Presho will be responsible for about 18 percent of the cost or about $43,000 and approximately $14,000 of in-kind labor and equipment.  
   The council approved the 2019 Appropriations Ordinance as presented.  
   Tabled the discussion regarding the implementation of the IPMC – International Property Management Code to allow council members more time to study the changes in the 2018 and 2019 codes. 
   A written report from Mike Olson, Code Enforcer, was reviewed by the council. Sprenger noted that since Olson completed the report, some property owners have shown progress on improvements; 19 have made contact with Olson and have been given a date to compete work and be in compliance with city ordinances. Only three properties have not taken any action and could be scheduled for abatement. 
   A written animal nuisance complaint filed by Presho resident Susan Thomas concerning dogs in her neighborhood was considered by the council. The parties involved in the complaint were in attendance and following a discussion, that became belligerent at times, the council dismissed the complaint as no specific nuisance was identified, and it appeared to be more of a misunderstanding of the city’s leash law than a nuisance violation. 
   Ehlers asked if the dogs in question were licensed, reminding owners all dogs must be vaccinated and licensed. Council member Roy England stated, “I hear a lot of complaints of dogs running in other people’s yards. We probably have to try and corral the dogs or take pictures of them and charge the owners when they are running at large... and nobody’s around them.”

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