Auburn City Council Changes Zoning Ordinance, Hears Proposal on Buying Property for Tree, Yard Waste Disposal
Auburn City Council addressed a variety of matters during the April 26 regular meeting. Information about issuing bonds for paving and making a contribution towards the Nemaha County Veterans Memorial are reported in a separate article.
Changes to City Ordinances
A hearing was held to obtain public comment prior to considering an ordinance regarding the recodification of the City of Auburn, Nebraska Code of Ordinances (including all regulations concerns zoning and flood plain Ordinance No. 8-09).
The City Planning Commission had met earlier and voted to recommend that the Auburn City Council proceed with the recodification of building regulations, construction, subdivisions and zoning, assuming that the Planning Commission will have an opportunity to examine the codes and changes in them in detail for further recommendation prior to their incorporation into the City’s Comprehensive Plan.
The council approved Ordinance No. 3-10 to revise all ordinances of the City of Auburn in areas including general provisions, administration, public works, traffic code, general regulations, business regulations, general offenses, land usage, and more.
Residential Demolition Project
The council approved drawdowns for administrative work for the City of Auburn’s Residential Demolition Project and also for actual demolition project expenses. Councilman Dennis Wittmann, who is chairman of Keep Auburn Beautiful, said four more properties were in line to be cleaned of asbestos by May 15 and the demolition should follow soon thereafter. Wittmann also reported that more residential applications are being sought because the city’s Community Development Block Grant funds received are able to assist with about 10 residential demolition projects.
The council accepted the resignation of Wayne Hemmer from the City of Auburn Municipal Facilities Corporation, which was formed about 15 years ago to assist with the lease purchase agreement for constructing the Auburn City Hall building. Hemmer has lived in Omaha since shortly after the corporation’s formation and assisted with necessary paperwork. But, it was decided that a person living locally might be able to serve the committee better should it choose to become more active and pursue another construction project. There was no recommended appointment to succeed Hemmer at this time.
Tree and Yard Waste Property
City Treasurer Glen Krueger and Street Commissioner Harry Bridgmon presented a cost estimate for comparing expenses if the city were to purchase land for a tree waste site as opposed to the current operation in which city crews haul tree debris from the collection site along 28th Street in south Auburn to the leased property. Residents of Auburn are currently allowed to haul tree debris, shrubs and grass to the collection site and then city employees haul the tree and yard waste to the leased site. If the city were to purchase the property west of the community, Auburn residents would then haul their yard and tree waste there, and city employees would just be in charge of keeping the collection site orderly and conducting routine burns.
The yearly cost estimation prepared by Krueger and Bridgmon follows: Loader expenses—$11,700, plus dump truck—$23,400, plus man hours—$14,625, plus rent—$500 times 12 months for an estimated cost of $55,725 per year to move the branches, leaves and grass clippings to the burn site plus rent.
The suggested purchase price for the burn site is $169,000 for 80 acres, with about 45 acres of the property serving as the burn site and the other 35 acres which could be used as rental farmground. The cost of the burn site divided by the expense to move the tree and yard debris to the burn site plus rent ($55,725) equals 3.03 years for the project to pay for itself, according to the information which Krueger presented. Also, the estimated income from cash rent of $125 per acre times 35 acres equals an income of $4,375 per year.
It was noted that the Street Department manhours formerly used to transport the tree and yard waste to the site could instead by used for street repair or related tasks.
Dottie Holliday of Auburn questioned if the city might incur additional security expenses with the public hauling their own tree and yard waste to the site. She said, “You will need more security. I would expect there will be higher insurance costs and there is the possibility you may need to purchase fencing for placement on some of the property.”
No action was taken regarding the tree and yard waste site information as it wasn’t included on the meeting as an action item.
At the start of the meeting, Mrs. Holliday stated that members of the task force studying the feasibility of hiring a city administrator would miss Dennis Wittmann, who had submitted his resignation from the task force.
Next Meeting on May 10
The next regular council meeting will be Monday, May 10 at 7 p.m.