(JARED ARNOLD/Chewelah Independent)
CERB study grant would require 25 percent matching funds, would identify target industries suitable for airport area…
At its July 3 regular meeting, the Chewelah City Council approved the administration to apply for up to $50,000 of state economic development monies that will be used for a planning and feasibility study for the land around the Chewelah Municipal Airport.
The Department of Commerce’s Community Economic Revitalization Board (CERB) study grant will require at least 25 percent matching funds from the city and will allow the city to do an objective feasibility study for new business development on the airport property. According to CERB, the study should include a market analysis, market strategy and identify target industries suitable for the site.
CERB grant awards are scheduled to be announced in September.
COUNCIL UPDATED ON CREATIVE DISTRICT
Mike Bentz delivered good news to the council regarding Chewelah’s recent Creative District designation.
Bentz quoted Washington Arts Commission’s Annette Roth from a June 25 e-mail letter to him.
“I want to congratulate you and the entire community of Chewelah on your designation as Washington State’s second Creative District. Our selection panel unanimously approved the application. They were particularly impressed with how well you were able to reach consensus and gather such a strong group of stakeholders and partners together for the planning process,” Roth stated in her letter.
Bentz listed and thanked the collaborative partners that contributed to the application, including the Chewelah Chamber of Commerce (as the sponsoring organization); City of Chewelah – Councilwoman Cori Wuesthoff; Tri County Economic Development District – Shelly Stevens; Chewelah Performing and Cultural Arts (PACA) and Kiwanis – Bud Evans; Community Celebrations – Sharon Ludwig; Chewelah Arts Guild – John Grumbach and Dawn Wells; Libraries of Stevens County – Bryan Tidwell; Chewelah School District – Superintendent Rich McFarland; Chewelah Farmers Market – Joan Thompson; Chataqua Film Festival – Joe Wulczynski; Mind Meld – Larah and Chuck Ritchie; and WSU Extension – Debra Hansen; Norm LeBret; Diane Evans; and Lynn Cassidy.
“The appointment by the Washington State Arts Commission of Chewelah as a Creative District is an exciting step for the future of Chewelah. The local collaborative partners are both humble and proud of the achievment. The local excitement level since the local newspaper made the announcement has been contagious. We’re looking forward to utilizing the Creative District designation as a catalyst for Chewelah becoming a beacon for artisans, entrepreneurs, tourism and continued economic growth of the Chewelah area,” Bentz explained to the council.
“That is exciting news. A lot of hard work went into that. Thank you,” Knauss told Bentz.
COUNCIL ADOPTS NEW RULES FOR SIDE SEWERS
The council approved changes to the city code that will now require property owners to pay for replacement and repairs of side sewer lines in the public right-of-way and obtain a plumbing permit.
Councilwoman Carra Nupp voted against the measure.
Previously, property owners were responsible only for the portion of the side sewer line on their private property and the city was responsible for the portion in the public right-of-way.
The council also added a $100 side sewer inspection fee and a fee for pavement repair to be determined based on actual costs at the time of the work.
PUBLIC RECORDS CODE UPDATED
The council voted unanimously to adopt updates to city code relating to public records as well as a new Public Records Policy.
The updates will bring the code into conformance with current case law and Attorney General guidance on how cities should comply with the state’s Public Records Act. The last time the public records section of the code was updated was in 2013. City Administrator Mike Frizzell told the council that it will likely need to be updated at least annually to keep current with the changing legal environment.
The Public Records Policy, fee schedule and request form are available on the city’s website. The next regular meetings of the Chewelah City Council are scheduled for Wednesday, July 17 and Wednesday, August 7, 6:30 p.m. at the City Hall council chambers.