ILWACO — Ilwaco City Council is moving forward with its 2020 budget.
At its Oct. 28 meeting, the council approved its six-year capital facilities plan, a property tax increase, and other matters of business.
The council’s next meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Nov. 12 in the city’s community room, 158 First Avenue North.
2020-2025 facilities plan: Councilors passed the city’s six-year capital facilities plan. The plan documents city projects scheduled for completion between 2020 and 2025.
The state’s Growth Management Act requires cities to update capital facilities plans annually.
2020 projects include improvements to the water and sewer department; the wastewater treatment plan; the Hilltop Middle School route; Howerton Overlay; the city’s watershed; and Indian Creek Dam.
A complete list of the plan’s projects is available at https://bit.ly/31T6On7.
2020 property tax levy: Councilors passed a property tax increase for 2020 property owners. The tax will increase 1.19 percent from 2019, which is the maximum increase the state allows Ilwaco to charge ratepayers.
State law requires taxing districts to collect regular levies on revenue sources, like the property tax.
Pacific County also requires Ilwaco to pass the levy for its 2020 budget. The property tax is one of Ilwaco’s main funding resources.
Ilwaco won’t be allowed to earn more than $228,941 from the levy.
Pay scale: Councilors discussed edits to the city’s pay scale for employees. The updates will include removing pay scales that are below 2019 minimum wage standards, and giving employees a cost of living adjustment increase.
Parks and Recreation Committee: Julian Orr, owner of the Salt Hotel and Pub, was sworn into office as a member of Ilwaco’s Parks and Recreation Committee.
Fire department: Councilors postponed approving an agreement between Medix Ambulance Service and the Ilwaco Fire Department.
The agreement will likely be approved at the council’s next meeting.
During a separate discussion, Councilor Kristen Mathison questioned why the fire department hadn’t hired for an administrative role yet, despite having two qualified applicants. Mayor Gary Forner said Chief Tom Williams is responsible for hiring, and that Williams’ deadline for the position is Nov. 1.
Janitorial services agreement: Councilors approved a one-year contract between the city and Rock Solid Cleaning Services. The business, owned by Rockie Lincoln, will earn $455 monthly for cleaning the city’s fire hall, city hall and community building.
Tourism and trust: Ilwaco Planning Commission Chairman Jon Chambreau suggested the city put some of its earnings through the city’s occupancy tax toward senior-based advertising.
Chambreau noted that the commission would have more to plan if more people were coming into town, and that seniors would be a strong target audience for new residents.
Later in the meeting, Chambreau also requested the city publicly post and share meeting materials, as he’s attended special meetings recently where the materials weren’t available before the meeting.