TOWN COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES TUESDAY AUGUST 2, 2022
Meeting was held at Hot Springs City Hall 109 MAIN ST, HOT SPRINGS MT 59845
Also held via zoom.
CALL TO ORDER at 7:02 pm by Mayor Woods
ROLL CALL Graham, Aldridge, Weatherly, Smith, Woods, Gray
Also Present: Morgan Post, Emmitt Tucker, Steven Sheffield, Scott Vollmer, Ladonna
Vollmer, Eric Pfleger, Gayle hayley
APPROVAL OF MINUTES Smith/Weatherly 4-0 pass
PRESENTATION OF CLAIMS – Clerk inadvertently deposited personal check into the
Town account. Error was not caught by the bank. Claim to reimburse Gray. We are using
paygov for some court fines. Claims will show payment to city court for money received
through paygov. MMIA- liability insurance for $11000 Smith/Aldridge 4-0 pass
FINANCIAL REPORTS- April, May and June financial reports presented due to error
found by clerk for April. Graham/Aldridge- pass
MAYOR – Mayor Woods reported that everything has been extremely busy with both
projects going. Camas Creek Construction on A Street working on the main extension.
They are taking their time and getting it done right. Viking Paint is here and has started
sand blasting, building containment. Projects are going well and we are meeting with
Engineers and contractors daily.
PUBLIC WORKS- Crew has been working pot holes, cleaning up tree trimmings,
working on sewer lines, fixing a broken meter pit, digging in new water line, and seeral
other projects. We had a little oops on our part, we shut down tank one and the computer
thought the tanks needed to be equal so we ended up with a low water level and low
water pressure to some of the houses in town. Mike got on the problem immediately and
we were able to get tank two levels back up where they needed to be.
FIRE DEPT- fire department is extremely busy. We had 4 calls in one day. Trucks and
equipment were at the Elmo 2 fire for three days. The ambulance has been a little slower
this month. We received a $5000 grant from DNRC for wildland gear. Town match will
POLICE report presented by Chief Pfleger. Morgan Post(game warden) and Payden and
Payton (bear biologists) were present and provided information about the bears in town.
They have already had to kill a couple of them and relocate others. They provided
literature for the community explaining how to minimize attractants and provided
information about a cost share program for electric fences. They also recommended
upgrading to bear proof trash cans.
LIBRARY presented by Starla. Aldridge asked if the library would be doing in person
story time again instead of just on Facebook. Starla said they were considering it.
ZONING COMPLIANCE- a property on B St is asking about building in flood plain and
next to the ditch. We have had several questions regarding vacant property around town
and the zoning rules for those properties.
PUBLIC COMMENT FOR EACH AGENDA ITEM WILL BE ALLOWED
Woods opened the public hearing at 7:53 for discussion on the preliminary budget.
Woods explained the budget and explained that we had figured the expenditure budget
with a 10% raise for all employees and a $2.hr raise for all employees. Council was
presented with the budget both ways. Woods also explained how we determine the value
of a mill and how mills are levied each year. Our tax revenue has gone up a little due to
more homes being built and higher tax values being assessed. He asked if there was any
questions about this. There was none. Then he explained that the water fund revenue is
running a little higher with the increases over the past couple of years. Sewer fund is a
little bit tighter but is improving. Streets is what the State gives us. HB473 is the most
recent gas tax money that we have to ask for each year and spend each year. Total
Revenue is up approximately $6000 this year. We increased anticipated revenue in the
parks and rec fund due to the parks and rec board doing fundraisers. We discussed the
library fund budget at last meeting. There may be small changes when we get the final
budget numbers for tax revenue. Fire department transport fund we have budgeted at
$6500. Woods then explained that a budget creates spending authority. Any fund can not
be overspent. General fund can’t use money from and enterprise fund such as water or
sewer and the enterprise funds must support themselves. We are still in the process of
completing the water project. The water renovation fund still has $730,000 to spend. We
are also expecting higher sewer testing expenses this year. The cost for these tests
continue to increase. Gayle Hayley asked how many gallons of water and sewer do you
get with the basic rate. Woods explained the base rate and usage rate. Leslee Smith
discussed the wages and the fact that we need to increase our wages in order to keep our
employees. If we can’t improve wages we will lose employees to better paying jobs.
Woods asked if council thought they should use the 10% or $2 increase. Discussion
between council members indicated they would like the $2 increase. Woods asked public
if they had any more questions or comments regarding the preliminary budget. There was
none. Public hearing closed at 8:25 pm.
PRELIMINARY BUDGET Motion made by Smith to accept the preliminary budget with
a $2/hr pay increase for all hourly employees. Seconded by Weatherly 4-0 pass
PAY RATES FOR EMPLOYEES FOR FY22- Motion made for $2/hr pay increase made
by Aldridge seconded by Graham 4-0 pass
REQUEST TO ABANDON WATER SERVICE LINE FEE – Gayle Hayley is requesting
to only pay one water fee at her property. She has a home that has been used as a duplex
in the past. She states she will not be renting it out to anyone and uses the second unit as
her office. She would like to remove the second water fee from her bill. Woods explained
the ordinance reads that any place that has 2 electric meters will be billed for a second
water base fee. Hayley explained she would like to eliminate one power meter but hasn’t
been able to get an electrician to come do the work. She would also like to create an
indoor connection between the two units. She stated she doesn’t use that much water so
she shouldn’t have two base fees. Gray explained that there is one upstairs unit and one
downstairs unit and the downstairs unit can not be accessed without going outside. She
also explained that the second base fee is because there are two units, not because of the
water use. Hayley stated her neighbor was renting out an rv spot and she thought he
should be paying two fees. Graham explained that when she bought the home it was
considered two units. Woods explained EDUs and how we split the cost of maintaining
and operating the system. Hayley got upset and left the meeting. Graham made a motion
to table the issue until Hayley comes back with a plan Graham/Aldridge 4-0 pass
ANNEXATION OF PROPERTY ADJACENT TO THE RODEO GROUNDS-Chris and
Allison Tricton introduced themselves as part owners of the property. Allison explained
that they hope to slowly develop the property and bring in new homes and new people.
They have been approve for 40 lots but aren’t sure they want that many. They may make
bigger lots with fewer homes. Woods explained that he has had several meetings with the
owners. They have redrawn lots and put roads in a little different than the old plans. They
have done a land swap with some property owners on Jaques Rd. in hopes of making it
more neighborhood friendly. In order to move forward they need to annex in so they can
connect to city water and sewer. There are very few lots available for new homes in town.
Weatherly asked if Public Works can handle the work that needs to be done. Woods
explained that the owners of the subdivision would be responsible for putting in the
infrastructure and then would turn it over to the town once it is in place. Weatherly made
a motion to approve the annexation Aldridge seconded. Gray explained it will be a
resolution at the next meeting. 4-0 pass
PARK AND REC FUNDS FOR BBQ- Graham presented an idea for the parks and rec
board to have a bbq fundraiser and was asking for money from the park and rec fund to
purchase the food for the bbq.They had a meeting and are making plans for electricity in
the park, and maybe a splash deck in the future
BBQ will be held August 18 th at 7pm in the park. Aldridge made a motion to approve the
parks and rec board to use money from the parks and rec fund for food for the bbq, Smith
seconded 4-0 pass
PUBLIC COMMENT ON NON-AGENDA ITEMS
Woods asked if there was any public comment on non-agenda items, there was none.
8:55 Graham/Aldridge 4-0 pass