Editor's Note: This story has been updated to include additions to the City Council's agenda.
Following two hours of public comment last month regarding the city’s homelessness problem, the Longview City Council on Thursday will consider setting the baseline temperature for declaring a severe weather event at 35 degrees.
Under current law, the city can declare a severe weather emergency when temperatures are forecast to drop below 32 degrees for two or more days. Declaring an emergency allows temporary severe weather shelters to open and operate.
On Nov. 21, the council directed staff to write an ordinance raising that temperature threshold.
Also during the meeting, the council will consider renewing City Manager Kurt Sacha's contract. Further details were not immediately available.
Ahead of the regular meeting, the council also will hold a workshop at 6 p.m. Thursday in City Hall to discuss the city’s federal legislative agenda.
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Then, during the regular meeting at 7 p.m., the council will consider adopting its state legislative agenda. The city’s current agenda includes a $500,000 request to construct a new satellite police office in the Highlands, an additional $50 million request from the state Transportation Budget to complete the Industrial Way-Oregon Way intersection project and general support for legislation spurring economic development.
Also during Thursday’s meeting, the council will consider water, stormwater and garbage rates for next year. Staff will recommend a 6% increase in water rates, which is about $1.91 more a month for the average residential customer. Garbage rates are proposed to increase 2% to $18.78 a month for weekly pickup at a single-family home. And staff will recommend a 6% increase in stormwater rates, or about 82 cents more a month for the average user.
The council also will consider increasing the rate it uses to calculate Waste Control’s annual adjustments. Currently the city uses 34% of the Portland/Salem Consumer Price Index to reflect changes in the cost of operations. Waste Control has asked the city to instead use 80% of the CPI due to increased operational costs and changing markets, according to city documents.
In addition, the Portland/Salem area CPI was discontinued last year, so city staff on Thursday also will recommend using the West Size Class B/C adjustment from now on.
Also during the meeting, the council will consider:
- Amendments to the 2019-2020 budget to authorize unforeseen expenditures.
- A franchise and master license agreement with Verizon wireless to install, operate and maintain a small cell system in city right of way.
- Closing out the water and sewer replacement project along the alley between Eighth and Ninth avenues.
- A $34,000 consultant contract with PBS Engineering and Environmental to design a road safety plan.