by Emily Waldrep
Ivanhoe held its monthly city council meeting on January 10 and discussed trip reimbursements for city business, turning over the animal control program, the new security officer and the city marshal position.
The board began by approving the 2012 audit report put together by David, Heineman and Company, then moved on to approving the reimbursement of mileage, food, parking fees and lodging expenses during city related training or business trips. The issue had previously been tabled during the December 2012 meeting so that it could be "fine-tuned" to fit Ivanhoe's needs as a city.
The resolution states that the city will "reimburse all city-related reasonable expenses during training or city related business trips by city employees, council members and the city mayor."
According to Mayor Jack Brockhouse, all cost must remain within a "reasonable" budget. Mileage would be paid within the governmental guidelines at the time of the trip, lodging will be limited to $135 unless no other accommodations are available, and food will be reimbursed $50 per diem.
Although the resolution has been in the making for months, some board members had reservations about approving the resolution.
Council member Mark Elliot noticed that some items may not require a receipt to be reimbursed, and wanted to change that.
"If you don't have a receipt, I don't think you ought to have any money be submitted to you," Elliot said. "I learned my lesson one of the first times when I didn't get a receipt. If you don't have a receipt, you don't get your money back. If you rewrite that I will pass it, if you don't, I won't."
But, as C.D Woodrome pointed out, mileage, parking and other various expenses can't be specifically documented.
"We predominantly do receive receipts, but however there are some things that cannot be receipted," Woodrome said. "One of those are mileage. There are also times when there is travel that may not be documented."
After a short discussion, the resolution passed with 4 council members for the resolution and one council member, Mark Elliot, against.
In other business, council discussed the possible city Marshall position. The city may need a city marshal in the future so that several of its ordinances within the city can be enforced, since local law enforcement cannot enforce city-specific ordinances. But, some council members revealed that they feel that the position is unwarranted and impossible to fill.
"At this point in time I feel that the city is not able to financially pursue the position of a city marshal," said council member David Baer. "The city does not have any property suitable to build a building on and be outfitted with the necessary equipment for the marshal's office to operate out of. Next, the cost of the new police car outfitted with all of the proper equipment that is needed. The next thing is being a non-paid position, who would be willing to attend all training classes, be certified as a city marshal and assume all of the responsibilities of a city marshal? I feel the sheriffs office is sufficient for this time."
Baer moved the city marshal position be postponed for a indefinite period of time, due to these issues. But, other council members realized that a city marshal would be needed to enforce some city ordinances.
"From a law enforcement standpoint, they cannot do anything with the city ordinances," said Council member Tommy Morris. "The only people that could do that would be a city policeman or a city marshal."
Despite the apparent need for a city marshal, the motion passed with three council members for postponing the city marshal position and two against.