The Odessa Record -

Town council

Long meeting deals with many issues


The town council met Tuesday, May 29, for its regularly bi-monthly meeting. Since Monday was Memorial Day, the official date for the meeting was the following Tuesday.

A public hearing was held regarding a permit for erection of a fence at 305 S. Second Street. Since Council members still had too many unanswered questions about the details of the fence, the issue was tabled with a request that the homeowner appear in person with the required information.

Under public comment, town resident Gina Schlomer gave each member of the Council a copy of a letter stating that the agency in charge of investigating businesses potentially operating as unlicensed day care facilities had determined that Schlomer had been cleared of operating an unlicensed day care in her home. The agency agreed that she was legally allowed to babysit the children of friends and family members without having to obtain a license to operate a day care.

Kurt Addicott of Century West Engineering in Snohomish reported that two bids had been received for the work to be performed at the Odessa municipal airport. The low bid of $712,000 was submitted by CR Contracting of Bend, Ore. and was accepted by unanimous vote of the Council. Despite being the low bid, the amount was nevertheless higher than Century West engineers had expected, leading to expressions of dismay from council members. Addicott said that the Federal Aviation Administration and the Washington State Department of Transportation were trying to find additional funds to help get the Odessa project completed, but the town’s matching funds will still likely be in the neighborhood of $47,000. Century West has prepared a document outlining the scope of work to be performed and submitted it to Mary Vargas at the FAA.

Building permits for fences, roof replacement and construction of a mobile home and garage were approved by the Council.

Also approved was an amendment proposed by a group of citizens to the recently passed ordinance governing grave decorations at the cemetery.

Fire chief Don Strebeck reported that property owners of nearly 50 addresses in town were sent letters advising them that overgrowth of vegetation was creating a fire hazard and required mitigation. After the letters were sent out, Strebeck rechecked the properties, and 23 still had not been dealt with. In the meantime, another 25 properties were found to have crossed the threshold into the hazard category. The Council passed a resolution granting permission for the public works crew to begin mowing down the overgrowth on the affected properties and placing liens on the properties to recoup the expense of doing so.

The Council’s recent ordinance clarifying parking of commercial and recreational trailers on residential streets caused consternation for some Odessa residents. A resident claiming that work trailers that earlier had to be moved from the rear of their property at police request were now having to be moved from their location on the street in front of their home. Explanations by Mayor Bill Crossley and Police Chief Tom Clark indicated that the earlier request was to move the vehicles because they encroached into the ally at the rear of the property and that the most recent request was to prevent blocked views of intersections and other such impediments to safe traffic flow. Homeowners may park their trailers anywhere they wish on their own property, they said, but the alleys and streets are owned by the town which is responsible for ensuring that emergency vehicles are not impeded.

Mayor Bill Crossley provided the Council with information from a solar farm operation that could provide a revenue for the Town of Odessa. Council members agreed to study the information and discuss it at the next meeting.

In his police report, Chief Tom Clark reported 22 cases pending, including two instances of residential burglary. Surveillance cameras provided a glimpse of the make and model of vehicle used in one of the burglaries and other jurisdictions have been notified to be on the lookout.

Public works director Rod Webster was complimented on the filled areas at the cemetery. He reported that Willy Bell had been hired to lay down the sand/dirt mixture in low areas that will allow the grass to come up through the filled material. Another area was deemed too deep to be filled with the mixture and was instead filled only with dirt. That area will have grass seed planted in it.

Webster also said work on the pool is proceeding in anticipation of its June 17 opening. Areas of crumbling concrete are being repaired. Street repairs are scheduled to begin in June, with asphalt being patched in where needed by the town crew as it is ordered for use in the overall project by the bid contractor.

The remote water meter readers that had not worked properly since they were delivered were finally now working well and were saving the town crew a lot of time reading meters.

Mayor Bill Crossley reported that he has appointed Tami Smith to the planning commission. One additional person is still needed in order to have a full complement on the commission.


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