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From the last Council meeting, Jan 10, 2023...

First and foremost, Aldrich CPAs, the city's auditor gave the city, and specifically the Finance Department, kudos for their exceptional work and collaborative spirit. They worked diligently with Aldrich CPAs to provide them with data in a timely fashion and quickly made corrections to any minor discrepancies the firm identified. All in all, we're in good financial hands.

Council liaison positions were doled out. New councilor, Kate Schwarzler will serve as liaison to the Parks and Recreation Commission and will serve on the MINET board (former Councilor Michael Hicks will continue to serve as the community rep). Independence Days Commission, which used to be one of my responsibilities, has been assigned to Councilor Jobe. I've thoroughly enjoyed serving as the liaison for the past 4 years and am ready to staff a booth this year instead. I retained my position with the Mid-Willamette Valley Homeless Alliance. Councilor Morton retained the Museum and Library boards and Councilor Martin Willis will keep the Planning Commission and take on the Heritage Museum Commission liaison position as well. Councilor Roden retained the Traffic and Safety Commission. Councilor Morton was once again elected to serve as Council President.

In other news, we approved G&R Wrecker's license to operate. And we appointed the city's Finance Director to serve as the Budget Officer and approved the Budget Committee calendar.

On January 25th, the City Manager and Mayor will attend City Hall Day at the Capital (and Salem Convention Center). They will have many opportunities then to discuss city issues with our House and Senate representatives.

Following the Council meeting, we held two work sessions:

  1. The Water Master Plan - we, and members of the Planning Commission, heard from engineers the state of our water rights and how they will continue to be affected as our population grows. We are doing what we can to secure state and federal infrastructure dollars to address capacity, future growth, and system integrity. The plan will go to the Planning Commission next before coming to Council for a vote.

  2. Sports Park Feasibility Study - we, and members of the Parks and Recreation Commission, heard from the study consultant about pros and cons with further developing the current sports park into a regional baseball tournament park. Pending the inclusion of capital improvement cost data, this study will come to Council in the near future for a decision.

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