At their November 26 meeting, the City Council of La Porte City reviewed a proposal that would add eight lots to the City’s newest housing development, the Sweet Addition. The proposed lots would extend Allison and Sweet Avenues, with four lots placed on extending cul de sacs. Varying in size from just under to just over a half acre each, the new lots would be slightly larger than many of the existing ones in Sweet 1st Addition. Preliminary cost estimates to develop eight lots, including water main, are $250,000. Should the City chose to develop the lots themselves, those costs could be recouped in six years by utilizing Tax Increment Financing revenues, based on current TIF revenues. Another option the City can pursue to add these eight new lots would be to solicit bids from potential developers. Following the review of the financial estimates and preliminary map, the Council took no further action.

A report summarizing the financial activity of the City for Fiscal Year 2018 (FY18) was approved by the Council. In FY18, the City had total revenues of $3,707,984 and total expenditures of $3,694,222. The Annual Financial Report is required to be submitted to the State by December 1, 2018.

The Council approved the second of three readings of an ordinance that includes two rate increases for sewer customers: For all payments due after December 15, 2018, the minimum user charge shall be $27.50 plus $.015 per cubic foot of usage exceeding 750 cubic feet. For all payments due after June 15, 2019, the minimum user charge shall be $29.00 plus $.02 per cubic foot of usage exceeding 750 cubic feet. The third and final reading will take place at the next Council meeting, which has been moved from Monday, December 10 to Wednesday, December 12. The meeting date was changed after it was determined that the number of Council members attending the school concert on Monday would result in a lack of a quorum.

In other business, the Council approved the appointment of Jeff McFarland as the City’s Fire Chief. McFarland’s term will begin on January 1, 2019 and will run for 2 years.