Brazil City Council gave the mayor permission to advertise for a full-time planning and zoning administrator at their regular meeting last night.
The person hired for this position will be responsible for receiving fines from residents who ignore city ordinances for property clean-up, trash removal and unsafe structures. Prior to the creation of this new position, water office employees had been handling the duties without much success of collecting fines or enforcing the ordinances.
"I would like to use the money we received from the sale of the Lennox Street property to pay for the position. We got $24,500 from the sale of a house we only paid a (one) dollar for. Then when the budget comes in we can transfer the funds back," Mayor Kenny Crabb said.
Councilman Jim Sheese said he would like to plan a work session to develop a job description for the planning and zoning adminstrator along with specific ordinance fines. He also suggested the salary be paid from a portion of the collected fines.
City Attorney Eric Wyndham said he would check with the State Board of Accounts to find out if that was legal.
Crabb pointed out that the first citywide heavy trash pickup of the year is scheduled for April. He would like to have the work session as soon as possible in order to have the job description, ordinances and fines in place and the person for the position hired by the first of May.
The position will be appointed by the mayor.
In other business:
- The council approved the CF-1 compliance with statement of benefits made by Britt Tool Inc. for the tax abatement the company received. It was noted the manufacturer has 59 employees and plans to hire an additional three or four.
- The street department is sending out two crews each day to patch potholes. The department received a discounted price on asphalt from Milestone, the company that bought out Wabash Valley Asphalt. Sand and salt has piled up on many city sidewalks and streets. It was suggested that people on community service sweep the debris from the sidewalks before the street cleaner goes out. The department will wait until danger of freezing is past before sending out the street cleaner.
- Humane Society met last night and is in the process of upgrading their phone system to prevent anymore unreturned phone calls.
- Brazil City Police Chief Terry Harrison said he has received calls from several concerned citizens regarding people coming in from outside the county to solicit donations at street intersections. He asked the City Council to develop an ordinance to require organizations to obtain a permit before soliciting. The permit, to be obtained from the city clerk-treasurer, would require the display of the organization's name and for what it is collecting. Wyndham will develop an ordinance for the next meeting.