Le Mars Code and Ordinance Department Issues Annual Report
(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Code Enforcement and Building Department issued its annual report and offered it to the city council during Tuesday’s meeting. Code and Ordinance Enforcement officer Greg Schmid informed the city council there
were 114 requests for building permits in 2017, which was one fewer than the previous year. However, the fees from the building construction and costs were considerably lower. In 2016, the city collected more than $90,000 in
construction fees, but in 2017 the city acquired slightly less than $72,000.
The construction costs fell $6 million dollars from the 2017 figure compared to the 2016 figure. Schmid attributes the loss of revenue due primarily to the construction of the Nor-Am cold storage facility. He says the new Nor-AM expansion last year gave the city a bigger boost in the collected revenues.
Schmid reported there were 19 newly constructed single family homes constructed in Le Mars during 2017, which compares to the 26 new homes from the previous year. There were five commercial construction projects during 2017. In 2016,
the number included seven commercial properties under construction. Although, single family homes were down, the city did see a boom with multi-family units being constructed. Four new apartment complexes are in the process of being
built, and Schmid told the city council, he expects most of them will start renting to families beginning in the spring.
County Supervisors Re-elect Don Kass As Chairman
(Le Mars) — Plymouth County Board of Supervisors re-elected Don Kass of rural Remsen as the chairman for the county governing board. Meanwhile, Craig Anderson of rural Merrill, was again re-elected as the vice chairman for the county board of supervisors. The Plymouth County Supervisors were given an
update from Brian Paulsen with I-S-G Architects regarding the proposed renovation project of the the county courthouse. Chairman Don Kass says an estimate is not yet being released to the public, as it could affect the construction bids. However, the supervisors hope the renovation project will get started by early April, with a completion date of early August. Part of the renovation will be to make the restrooms ADA compliant, and to replace many of the canopies, along with new storm water drainage.
Goodchild Shares Concerns About Not Knowing Costs For New Police Building
(Le Mars) — At the start of the city council meeting, discussion focused on the new Le Mars Police Department headquarters, which is a building currently owned by Total Motors, and previously was the former Motor Inn dealership. The
council had set up a public hearing, and councilman Clark Goodchild indicated he had some concerns, because there hadn’t been any formal plans presented to the council.
In the final outcome, the council gave its assurance that it supports the renovation for the new police headquarters, and wanted the project to proceed.
Fire Department Issues December Report
(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department responded to a total of 29 calls during December, according to its monthly report. Ten of those calls were for fires, the fire department performed four rescues, conducted eight
investigations and accident clean-ups, and had six requests for services. The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department had one mutual aid call with Merrill.
Total Motors and Old School Signs Form Merger
(Le Mars) — Two businesses in Le Mars have announced they have formed a merger.
Total Motors and Old School Signs have reached an agreement. Cathy Krommenhoek has owned and operated Old School Signs for the last ten years. Krommenhoek will join Total Motors as they expand their services. Total Motors will call this new department “Graphic Solutions.” Krommenhoek says the merger will benefit customers of both businesses. Scott Taylor, owner of Total Motors says he is excited about the merger. The new Total Graphics Solutions will still be located in the Old School facility at 1130 12th Street in Le Mars.
Reynolds Facing Lawsuit Over Using Reserve Funds
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – A Democratic lawmaker has filed a lawsuit alleging Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds and a top aide broke the law when they transferred $13 million from a reserve fund to balance the budget.
The lawsuit was filed Tuesday against Reynolds and Department of Management director Dave Roederer by Rep. Chris Hall, the ranking member on the House Appropriations committee.
It asks a judge to declare that Reynolds’ proclamation ordering the fund transfer in September was illegal and to void “all actions” taken as a result.
At issue is a $13 million transfer from the State Economic Emergency Fund, which was created to cushion the blow of fiscal downturns on core services. The lawsuit claims that the legal conditions weren’t met to trigger the governor’s
transfer authority, an argument Reynolds has dismissed.