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By Terry Froseth
The city of Kenmare has a new building inspector.
Mayor Roger Ness introduced Kenmare resident Don Siebert, who has accepted the position.
Siebert comes to the job with “30-some years of experience,” Ness said.
Now retired, Siebert previously served as Ward County Tax Assessor.
He has lived in Kenmare since being flooded out of his Minot home in 2011.
Siebert said he will work out of the city hall council chambers for two hours each day, Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
City residents may contact him through the city auditor’s office.
Property tax credit
or rent rebate available
City accountant Jan Kostad recommended the city publicize the Homestead Tax Credit for senior citizens and disabled persons, and have a contact person available in town.
The Homestead Tax Credit can reduce a senior citizen’s or a disabled person’s taxable value on their home by 20 percent to 100 percent.
Renters who qualify may receive a refund of a portion of their rent, up to $400.
Requirements include assets not to exceed $75,000, excluding the first $100,000 market value of your home. You must be 65 years of age or older, or be permanently and totally disabled. Income, with exclusions, may not exceed $26,000.
The program is administered through the Office of State Tax Commissioner.
It was mentioned that former city auditor Jim Ackerman, as well as public works director Mike Thompson, have worked with the program in the past.
Thompson said he has worked with Kostad on two or three Homestead Tax Credits in the past year.
for snow removal
Council members and city police commented there are still vehicles and trailers on the streets in violation of city ordinance and hampering snow removal.
Mayor Ness stated that anyone needing a place to park the vehicles or trailers off the streets should contact the city. Ness said the city could allow parking at the landfill with the understanding it is unsecured; the city takes no responsibility; and the city won’t move it out there for them.
In other action:
• Jan Kostad presented the financial report. There was discussion of the Hall losing money on operation since fees for use of the facility were ended.
Several council member expressed the opinion that certain types of use, such as business activities, should be charged. Mayor Ness directed the committee to review the policy.
• Raffle permits were issued for a Dollars for Scholars fundraiser, and for a benefit for Ron McNeiley.
• A liquor license extension for M&K Pizza Hub to the Memorial Hall on January 18 and 19 for the firemen’s coyote tournament was approved.
• It was announced the Kenmare Fire Department has 50 teams entered in its coyote tournament.
• A $400 donation to the Fire Department from the city gaming fund (Minot Hockey Boosters) was approved. The donation will be used to pay the FFA for set-up, clean-up, and making of trophies for the coyote hunt.
• City engineer Justin Froseth reported the water tower controls are not yet fully automated, but they will be after additionally equipment is ordered and installed.
Froseth said he met with a committee concerning options for an assessment district to improve the downtown business square. Previous discussion of improvements include lighting, curb and sidewalks.
Downtown businesses will be notified after an assessment plan has been set.
• The city snow removal blade is not running. It may only need a new fuel pump.
• The February 11 meeting date was moved to Wednesday, February 13 at 7:00 pm.