With the 2009 budget in the works and the economy in recession concerned citizens spoke out at the Cherokee Village City Council meeting Dec. 18.
Cherokee Village Mayor Lloyd Hefley read a letter to the council that Cherokee Village Councilman Petr Oberding had sent to him and published in the paper.
The letter said, "It is regrettable that I am unable to attend this city council meeting. However, I would like to reiterate my position pertaining to the 2009 budget which encompass a 10 percent budget salary increase for the city employees. The C.V. residents elected the aldermen to serve and protect their interest. In these economic hard times, I cannot with a clear conscience support a 10 percent budget salary increase, because I would not be looking out for their best interest.
"Especially now that the city council members recently approved a resolution to levy 2 mill advalorem taxes for the city of Cherokee Village.
"I would like the city council members to once more reconsider and I suggest that they vote for a percentage not to exceed 3 percent." The letter was signed Petr R. Oberding, Alderman.
Another Cherokee Village resident stood up during the meeting to express his feelings as well. The man said he represented a group of people in what he was about to say.
"How did you come up with a 10 percent increase in salaries?" the resident asked the council. "Most other cities come nowhere near that. We feel that 10 percent is way out of line."
The council explained that they have not approved a budget yet that sets any raise. The resident told the council he felt like the two mills advalorem tax was set to support the raise.
Alderman Tom Thone explained that the council has reviewed several proposed budgets for 2009 and all of them are the same or less than 2008. He said the money is just distributed differently. The council voted to postpone voting on the proposed 2009 budget until a special meeting that is to be held Dec. 29 at 7 p.m.
The council passed three resolutions that address the unsightly conditions of three separate properties in the city limits.
In order for these resolutions to be passed the council had to hold a hearing. Cherokee Village City Attorney John Abele asked Charles Delouche, the Cherokee Village building inspector a series of questions concerning the properties.
In the questions asked, the council determined that the properties, all three, have had a foundation poured and no structure completed. The building permits for the properties have all been expired for over a year and the owners of the properties have not responded to letters sent by Delouche.
The council voted to accept resolutions 2008-14, 2008-15 and 2008-16. These resolutions address each property separately. The resolutions order the razing and removal of a nuisance on the properties if the owner does not respond to the problem within 30 days.
The three properties affected by these resolutions are; Lot 1B, Block 2, Omaha Center Addition; Lot 1C, Block 2, Omaha Center Addition; and Lot 12, Block 2, Omaha Center Addition.
Mayor Hefley announced that VernaMae Newman has been appointed to the planning and zoning board effective Jan. 1. Newman will be replacing Petr Oberding. Jim Stoval's term is up in 2009 on the planning and zoning board and he has been reappointed.