2012-01-12 / News

Village adopts FEMA flood insurance resolution

By Krista Tacey-Cater

The Roscommon Village Council began 2012 by passing the Federal Emergency Management resolution at its Jan. 9 meeting.

According to the resolution the village will be participating in FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program which Village Manager Allen Lowe said in a Jan. 10 interview opened up the areas where flood insurance can be provided by a lender as flood insurance is now open in areas where it was not required before.

He said before Hurricane Katrina the federal government had the money to support areas hit by floods, however, Katrina wiped out that funding and by opening up the areas where flood insurance can be provided, those funds can be built back up again.

“We could call this the Katrina resolution,” Lowe said at the Jan. 9 meeting.

Lowe added there is not a cost to the village residents or to the village itself. He said although the village didn’t really have a choice not to participate, he said it gives residents who purchase property in the village more choices when it comes to being able to have flood insurance.

The village then passed a finance committee policy. According to the policy, the policy was made to “promote open and transparent government” by having a finance committee that would review checks to be written before a regular meeting. The policy would also make it mandatory for two trustees to be on the committee to review the checks.

Village President Erine Adams appointed trustees Marc McKee and Mike Butler to the committee for a one-year term and the remaining four council members voted in favor of the appointments. Trustee Joan Murphy was absent from the meeting.

Two issues regarding meeting procedures were brought up by the council and included recording the audio of village meetings and the possibility to taking

“council comments” off the agenda.

Collectively the council requested Lowe to seek additional information on recording the audio of each council meeting. During the last meeting in Dec. 2011, the council began discussing options for recording meeting dialog. Lowe said from previous research at Radio Shack in Grayling it would cost the village approximately $1,000 for four regular microphones, one wireless microphone and recording equipment.

Trustee Diane Lippert said there will be additional costs to having the meetings taped, noting that the recordings must be made available for copy for the public and that there must be a place where the public can listen to the recordings. She added the material would also have to be stored for retention.

Lowe added he would also be looking in to how long the recordings must be retained and proper means for making duplication.

Although the council was in agreement with the recording equipment, it was not in agreement with McKee’s suggestion to take “council comments” off the agenda. McKee said he felt “council comments” was a time that seems to be unnecessary as it gives members an “avenue for counterproductive comments.” He added the comments are at times inappropriate and he wanted the new year to get “off on the right foot.”

After taking a vote on the matter, McKee was the only trustee to vote in favor of taking “council comments” off the agenda. Trustee Jon Suvada said it was important to keep the comments as it gives members a time to express themselves. Adams agreed that keeping the comments on the agenda was important as long as the discussion stayed “constructive” and is used “productively.”

The next council meeting is scheduled for Jan. 23 at 7 p.m. An insurance work session will be held prior to the meeting at 5:30 p.m.

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