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"Sidney City Council Meeting Highlights: Addressing Community Needs and Opioid Settlement"

Introduction: The Sidney City Council convened on Monday, February 12, 2024, for its regular meeting at City Hall Council Chambers. The meeting covered a range of topics, including the annual report from the Sidney Department of Fire and Emergency Services, proposed amendments to personnel policies, budget appropriations, changes to City Council rules, and more. Here are some key highlights from the meeting.

Fire and Emergency Services Annual Report: Fire Chief Chad Hollinger presented the annual report for the Sidney Department of Fire and Emergency Services. Chief Hollinger highlighted various aspects, including fire prevention activities, employee training hours, fire operations, and significant events from 2023. Notably, he discussed the struggle to meet prescribed response times and emphasized the need for increased staffing to align with National Fire Protection Association standards. Plans for a Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grant application were discussed to address staffing needs.

Personnel Policies Amendment (A-3169): Human Resource Director Kelly Holthaus presented amendments to certain sections of Chapter 131 pertaining to personnel policies, procedures, and regulations. The changes aimed to comply with recent City Charter amendments and the 2023 reorganization of the Police Department. Council unanimously adopted Ordinance A-3169.

Budget Appropriations (A-3170): Finance Officer Renee DuLaney presented legisl



ation for supplemental appropriations for various funds in the 2024 budget year. The changes aimed to increase 2024 appropriations by $2,360,268, addressing needs such as fire engine bids. Council unanimously adopted Ordinance A-3170.

City Council Rules Amendment (A-3171): Law Director David Busick presented an ordinance approving amendments to the City of Sidney Rules of City Council, specifically regarding special meetings. The changes were aimed at avoiding potential conflicts with the Open Meetings Act. Council unanimously adopted Ordinance A-3171.

Infrastructure Development (Resolution No. 06-24): Engineering Manager Chad Arkenberg presented Resolution No. 06-24, declaring the necessity for repair/replacement of certain curb and gutters in the City of Sidney. The resolution outlined the process for requiring property owners to repair/replace curb and gutters. Council unanimously adopted the resolution.

Appointments and Acceptance of Plats (Resolutions 07-24 and 08-24): Resolution No. 07-24 appointed Brittany King as Deputy City Clerk, acknowledging her role as Communications Manager. Resolution No. 08-24 accepted the plat for "Burr Oak Subdivision - Phase 5A." Both resolutions were unanimously adopted.

Discussion on Opioid Settlement: Law Director Busick discussed the Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings for Endo International plc and its subsidiaries, emphasizing the importance of accepting the reorganization plan to access available funds. Council unanimously voted in favor of the plan.

Public Comments and Community Engagement: During public comments, citizens expressed support for a skate park in the city, presenting an online petition with 500 signatures. City Manager Bowsher invited collaboration to expedite the process, mentioning the proposed tax levy as a potential funding source.

Conclusion: The Sidney City Council meeting showcased a commitment to addressing community needs, public safety, and engaging with citizens on recreational amenities. The meeting reflected a proactive approach to challenges, demonstrating the city's dedication to its residents.

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