Muscatine City Council to set public hearings on South End Project, Utility Franchise Fee reduction

courtesy @CityOfMuscatine

The Muscatine City Council will set a date for a public hearing on the South End Playground Development Project and a public hearing on a decrease in the utility franchise fee when the council convenes Thursday (December 2) in the Council Chambers of Muscatine City Hall.

A virtual meeting will be held in conjunction with the in-person meeting for those who want to view the proceedings or make a comment but do not feel comfortable in attending in person. Details for joining that meeting are listed below.

The City of Muscatine Parks and Recreation Department has developed the plans and specifications for the South End Playground Development Project that is part of the South End Community Improvement Fund Projects. A public hearing must be held prior to the approval of the plans and specifications, and Rich Klimes, Parks and Recreation Director, is asking the Council to set the Public Hearing for 7 p.m. on December 16, 2021.

The improvement projects were developed in collaboration with the steering committee to make recreational improvements in the south end portion of the Muscatine community. The project will be funded through a $2 million private donation to the City.

Following a discussion of the Utility Franchise Fee at the November 18 meeting, a consensus was found among Council members to decrease the Utility Franchise Fee from its current five percent rate to there percent effective on Feb. 1, 2022. A public hearing is required to begin the process since the change requires an amendment to the Utility Franchise Fee ordinance. Nancy Lueck, Finance Director, is asking the Council to set the Public Hearing for 7 p.m. on December 9. The first reading of the ordinance amending the franchise fee rate will be held following the public hearing.

The decrease in the franchise fee requires three readings of the amended ordinance, approval and publication of the ordinance change following the third reading, and approval through Alliant Energy and the State of Iowa. Lueck believes that the reeducation can be accomplished before the February bills are sent out if no problems are discovered with the ordinance change, Alliant Energy, or the State of Iowa regulatory board.

Thursday’s City Council meeting is open to the public. Citizens attending the meeting are asked to follow current CDC (Centers for Disease Control) recommendations for wearing a mask indoors whether vaccinated or not. The City of Muscatine does not require wearing a mask, but does urge the public to follow Public Health and CDC recommendations.

Citizens who do not want to attend the in-person meeting can watch and/or participate through the GoToMeeting virtual meeting portal. Information on joining the session and how to make a comment during the meeting is listed below. The session will also be broadcast live on the City of Muscatine YouTube channel and on Muscatine Power & Water Cable Channel 2.

Information on the presentations and other agenda items can be found by clicking AGENDA to download the December 2, 2021, City Council agenda and/or attachments.

The best way for the public to participate is to dial in to the GoToMeeting session, mute your device, watch the session on YouTube or Cable Channel 2, and, at the appropriate time, unmute your device to ask a question or make a comment. The public can also use the “chat” feature on the GoToMeeting virtual meeting to pose a question to the Mayor, Council, or staff member.

Muscatine City Council Regular Meeting | Thu, Dec. 2, 2021 | 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM (CDT)

Join the meeting from your computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone by clicking the following link:

You can also use your phone by dialing +1 (872) 240-3412, follow the prompts, and type in Access Code 957-933-357 when prompted.

New to GoToMeeting? Get the app now and be ready when your first meeting starts:

Please mute your computer or phone while listening to the proceedings (press *6 when using phone or mute button on computer). A chat window is available when you use your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. Those wishing to speak or to ask a question are asked to use the chat box to post a message that will be seen by the Mayor who will address the questions or call on the speaker in turn. Those using their phones must wait until the Mayor asks for additional comments. The Mayor will recognize you prior to you addressing the Council.