Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Crouch Adopts Building Codes

  At a placid September 12 public hearing, the Crouch City Council readily adopted three building codes: the International building code; the International residential code, parts I through IV and IX; and the International energy conservation code. These have been added to the Crouch City Code, Title 4 Public Health and Safety, as Chapter Six.

  Moving to the regular monthly meeting, City Clerk, Kim Bosse, presented an attractive plaque to be displayed on the old library/new Syringa building. It commemorates Syringa Club’s involvement with the old library. The building, which is currently being transformed into a quaint museum for the City, will be dedicated at a ceremony on Wednesday, October 10, at 6 p.m. before the next regular council meeting.

  Councilman Richard Messick introduced the council to the plan for a projected budget and museum expenses, saying, “My idea is to get the museum to help us pay for that building.” Contractor Scott Leslie of Castle Mountain Homes, LLC, will be meeting with the museum board to ascertain repair needs and costs.

  It is always more enlightening to attend meetings than to read the abridged versions. I urge residents to take the time to enjoy these monthly municipal gatherings. That said, the two attendees were privy to an interesting discussion about the Community Hall water system.

  In July, the water tested positive for coliform bacteria. Loren Brazel, who tends to the needs of the system, informed the board that “DEQ said the problem with the water is probably the well; they are concerned about ground water contamination. The lab says that any time you have connectors that are not used, they build coliform bacteria—it’s dead-end pipes feeding back. The lab suggested occasionally running the water in the old library for a couple of minutes.”

  There are regular testing periods, where samples are taken from the kitchen, as the pipes then go through the bathrooms and hot water heater. The City will continue to treat the water as required.

  Idaho Heritage Trust has a grant available, with a fifty-percent match. The council gave Kim Bosse approval to apply for the grant, probably up to $20K. They may use the money from the Laura Moore Cunningham grant toward matching funds.

  Council met in executive session, to discuss land acquisition for a water tower. There was no forthcoming information on this after the session.

  Councilwoman Wendy Bates expressed concern over possible noise levels of an additional generator in Crouch—this raised questions on Conditional Use Permit (CUP) hearing procedures.

  City Attorney, John McFadden, formed her concerns into appropriate questions for the engineer, who will someday be installing a water system with a new generator and pumps. The site is not yet known, but Bates was adamant about protecting City residents and understanding procedures necessary to do it.

  Issues to put to engineers include:

1) What components of the water system will produce any measurable noise?

2) What is the expected volume (in decibels) from the existing well?

3) Will the generator make more noise than the GV Market generator?

4) With a back-up generator, what are the location, noise output and hours of operation?

  McFadden said the tank site will have almost virtually no noise until the second well, years down the line (Bates’ point well taken). The attorney advised Council to find models of other small cities and what they did: “You can dictate the CUPS. Most intensive (noisy, etc.) businesses require them.” He is willing to do a mini-workshop on this.

 The generator noise from the new market was brought up again. Councilwoman Dana Hinson said, “If this generator has the same decibels as the market, I’m gonna have a problem with it. I want to find a way we can make everyone happy.” Mayor Powell will talk to the owners of the market about the noise.

  The benefits of annexing into the City of Crouch were pondered because Council had received a question regarding public gathering permits, from a non-resident. McFadden responded that you would no longer be “'in the County'. If you are in a city, you do whatever is permitted in that city. The mayor and council are more direct. You have a better ability to influence the lawmakers, from a voting standpoint.”

  Mayor Powell added, “Eventually we will have a water system. Also, it’s a government where you can control the action...it’s a more direct place to come to the Council than to the County.”

  McFadden explained that at the conclusion of the hearing process, the council deliberates and they approve or deny the CUP application: “Some cities do a short form. At the end of the day, they need a document—‘you get to do this and here are the conditions’.”

  Three new business licenses were approved for the City of Crouch: Charity Rides, Inc; Russ Brown Attorneys; and the mayor’s favorite, Munster’s Ink Tattoo.

  Next Council meeting is October 10, 2012, 6:30 p.m., at the Crouch Community Hall. Be sure to attend the pre-meeting 6:00 p.m. Dedication Ceremony for the new Syringa Building. For information, call Kim Bosse, at 462-4687.



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