Tuesday’s Pioche public utilities meeting had a relatively low attendance this month, but issues of the town were still brought to bear.
Public comment came from two members of the community on different subjects.
The first comment had to do with pets keeping people awake. Apparently, there is no real ordinance to force residents to quiet their animals, which some members of the board thought is inaccurate. The subject of unowned animals came up as well, with board members commenting that such wild creatures make walking around certain parts of town somewhat dangerous. The board decided to add this subject to the next month’s agenda.
Next came comments by resident Carol White, who complained about the Pioche Public Utilities manager. Claims included that PPU had been paying a past employee unemployment even though the ex-employee had quit instead of being fired. This was explained away as being a part of the law. Since the employee had quit, the board had to wait a certain amount of time before paying unemployment, but as far as the board had been informed, they were in fact required to pay.
Next White complained about the passing of a member of the community and a claimed that the person’s utilities, while having been paid for a year, were not turned on.
The rest of the comments ranged from complaints about an employee who was falsifying time cards to the questioning of the board’s needs for two secretaries. In the end, White finished her comments by claiming various other misdeeds by the PPU manager.
Next came the financial reports, which some of the members of the board found didn’t match up. They found this particularly confusing, since the PPU meetings were changed to the third Tuesday to help create more accurate budgets, but the PPU manager claimed that these inconsistencies were due to some months having two payments to Lincoln County Power instead of one. Once a single pay month comes around the numbers will balance out. The manager said that he would have his secretaries make a note of these inconsistencies, and the board requested that the auditor be brought in to make sure everything would balance correctly.
Next came a familiar subject over the last few months: the donation of the property located at 550 Main Street. It was reported that if the board accepted the property and then turned around and sold it, it would first need to be appraised, according to Franklin Katschke. Since the nearest appraisers are in Utah, having to pay for them to come all the way here might end up not being worth it. It was suggested at one point that the board hold on to the property for a year to see if there was interest, but many members of the board were tired of dealing with the whole subject. A motion was made and carried to deny the donation, with a vote of four to one. The board publicly thanked those that donated the property, but the board found itself unwilling to get involved in real estate dealings.
The subject of some revisions to a few job descriptions came up next, with the board commending the format of the description. There were a few small tweaks that needed to be made, however, the first of which was the specification that the prospective employee would have to occasionally work with heavy machinery like tractors. The PPU manager said that he would add this specification to the job description as soon as possible. The board also pointed out the lack of residency requirements, which they insisted be adjusted as well.