The meeting began at 7:03 pm with all elected officials present. The agenda was approved, as were the minutes with some corrections.
Fire: Only 2 medical aid calls last month. Their system now uses more categories to describe the seriousness of the aid call. The call used to be listed as basic or advanced life support needed, with advanced being any call considered life-threatening. The new system now lists A through E, with A being the most serious. The two calls for Ruston last month were 1 at the A level and 1 at the B level.
Police: Chief Kunkel was gone at a conference, so Sgt. Lawless gave the report. There have been 3 vehicle prowls reported recently along 49th Street and he encouraged everyone to be watchful. In addition to the month's statistics, he noted the department has a new bicycle for patrol and plans to purchase one more this summer.
General Public Comment
Jim Wingard reported his observations of the casino trial and expressed his concern about how the Unicorn Tavern is being treated.
Sherri Forch asked again when Bennett Street would be reopened. She reported that the food donations left for the mail carrier last week had been stolen. She is opposed to any adult entertainment in Ruston.
Beth Torbet reported on behalf of the business district that she is attending some training on the Main Street development model. The district is helping with the car show on August 29th and may be setting up vendors at the event. She noted that her business was interviewed on KLAY radio and was able to get in lots of promotion for the town.
Ryan Morris thanked the council for their help getting this ready for them to build their home in Ruston.
1. City of Tacoma Presentation: Several staff from Tacoma presented their model for refuse disposal. Garbage would be collected at the curb, with recycle picked up every other week. Customers have the option twice a year to call for pick up of large items and they receive a reduced tipping rate at the dump. The rates run from about $20 a month for a 20-gallon can to $80 for a 90-gallon can. Hedrick and Hardin wanted to know when the last rate increase was and when the next one is anticipated. Rates are analysed annually, with an increase made last year. The rates could increase again next year if needed. Hunt confirmed that Tacoma does not recycle glass. Ruston is currently charging about $20 per can per month.
2. Ordinance 1311 - Maximum Load Limits (Second Reading): I had to step out of the meeting for a moment and did not note what action was taken.
3. Ordinance 1313 - Requiring Bike Helmets in Ruston (First Reading): Several students from Bellermine Prep school attended the meeting. This ordinance grew out of a class civics lesson. After discussion, the town attorney will make some changes and present the ordinance again at the next meeting.
4. Ordinance 1314 - Adult Entertainment Businesses (First Reading): The town attorney noted that Ruston is not allowed to ban these types of businesses outright, but can regulate them before any application is made. He is concerned that one of these businesses might be "coming our way". Rather than control the industry through zoning regulations, this ordinance would use a licensing approach. The town attorney felt that approach had stood up better in court challenges. After discussion, the issue will be brought back at the next meeting.
Hunt wanted the hotel/motel tax on the agenda soon as well.
5. Resolution 471 - Renewing Agreement for Public Defense Services: The consensus was to accept the proposal (which continues the current agreement with a slight cost increase), but it will be brought back at the next meeting along with a budget amendment to address the additional cost.
Claims and Payroll were approved.
Mayor Hopkins congratulated Council Member Hedrick on his new daughter. He noted this was the last meeting in the current town hall. The new community center should be ready in time for the next meeting. The open house will held on June 5th from 1 until 4 pm so that Mary Joyce can attend. There will be a street lighting ceremony on May 28th.
Huson reported that he met with the town planner on Point Ruston and other issues.
Hedrick asked that the mayor contact a homeowner about the sewer charges for line break on their property (work the town did after a sinkhole developed in an alley and then charged the homeowner).
Hunt confirmed that the contract with Comcast had been signed.
Hardin noted that the sidewalk repair on 53rd and Winnifred should be complete by the next meeting. He felt the town should make a list of all the people who had helped with the community center upgrade.
Kristovich said that Ryan Rhodes should be a the next meeting to talk about his suggestions for upgrading Rust Playfield.
The meeting adjourned at about 8:20 pm.