Council lowers utility fee

Sewer rate will decrease $3 a month

An amended payoff agreement regarding the city's sewer system could bode well for residential customers.

Photo by JC Amberlyn.

An amended payoff agreement regarding the city's sewer system could bode well for residential customers.

KINGMAN – The City Council on Tuesday evening voted unanimously to use a customer-based allocation from a windfall for sewer customers that will amount to an annual savings of $39.31.

With the recent Water Infrastructure Finance Authority accepting a $3.9 million pre-payment on the Hilltop Wastewater Treatment plant, the city’s sewer fund will realize a reduction in annual debt of around $400,000.

City staff originally unveiled one option to council at a previous meeting that would have provided savings for only residential customers. Staff was told to bring back more options that would include commercial customers.

“Tonight I provided several different alternatives in looking at how to allocate those monies to residential and commercial users,” city Finance Director Tina Moline told the Council.

Council picked the customer-based allocation (where 89.5 percent of the $400,000 goes to residential and 10.5 to commercial) over three others: equal allocation to residential and commercial (everyone would receive the same percent reduction); split allocation (where residential would get $200,000, and commercial would get $200,000); and usage revenue allocation (which would be based on the amount of revenue received by the city between residential and commercial).

Also Tuesday:

• In closed session near the end of the meeting, the council elected to not pursue action regarding the lease contract with the Kingman Airport Authority.

Council had previously wanted an outside attorney to analyze the contract. That eventually led to a person addressing the council and asking if the Arizona attorney general could look at it for free, thereby saving the attorney’s price of around $400 per hour.

The council agreed to check with the attorney general, but in a letter dated Oct. 21 to the city, the attorney general’s office said it doesn’t do that kind of legal work. City Attorney Carl Cooper pointed out much the same when the request to the attorney general was initially brought forward.

“We decided we are going to put off the legal review of (the lease agreement) until we’re further along on the dross cleanup,” said Mayor Richard Anderson.

“The primary reason for that is that the most critical issue the airport has raised over the years has been the dross site and the damage done to aircraft that have to roll over the taxiway areas where the dross is.

“We see that as a priority,” said Anderson. The dross site, where smelted World War II aircraft tailings were buried, has caused ground upheaval at the airport, which damages aircraft.

• The council approved two conditional use permits (CUPs) for businesses.

The first had to do with Kingman Ramada’s request for a helipad near its property.

“We’re looking really at making our property a destination and not just a place that you swing by on your way to Flagstaff or California,” said Ben Daniels of Ramada.

“We’re trying to create a place where people want to come, not just pass through and get some gas,” said Daniels.

“I think it’s a great idea to create adventure packages with your hotel and some of these tourism businesses,” said Vice Mayor Carole Young.

The council voted 6-1 to go forward with the CUP, with Councilman Larry Carver the lone dissenter.

Carver said there was too much traffic and too many businesses around the Ramada for the helipad and that it would present a safety problem.

The other CUP subject approved was for allowing mini-storages to be located next to the U-Haul business at 4015 Stockton Hill Road near the Gordon Street intersection. The Planning and Zoning Commission previously voted 6-0 to recommend approval.