City approves change to Family Dentistry sign

City Council
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     With a new owner taking over at Monticello Family Dentistry, Dr. Lindsey Meyer, the sign in front of the business is in need of some updating. That said, according to Monticello City Code, this change in ownership triggered the city council to look into sign requirements during their Feb. 18 meeting.

     City Administrator Doug Herman explained that the current sign is a pole sign, and sits in the right of way on S. Main Street. Signs within the right of way, according to city code, are to be monument signs. And the monument signs are to be setback 5 feet, unless approved in advance by the city council.

     Herman asked the council to consider whether a dental office in that location of town justified a pole sign, as well as a pole sign of that height and size. Would a monument sign in line with the code still meet the needs of the business? Does the pole sign have an impact on neighboring businesses or homes?

     It was noted that the goal of the city council in the past was to eliminate pole signs that were deemed unnecessary for the proposed use.

     Herman said the Planning and Zoning Board reviewed the situation, and recommended that the council approve Meyer’s pole sign request.

     Herman said Meyer would need to apply for a $25 building permit and a right of way permit when changing the face of the sign.

     The board approved Meyer’s request.

In other city business:

     • The council approved a plat of survey of two parcels on 190th Street outside Monticello. The purpose of the survey is to transfer the parcels to Kevin Prull, increasing his property from four acres to 18 acres.

     • The council acknowledged the wage increases for staff of the Monticello Public Library for FY 2020. The library board has the power to set staff wages, and approved a 7.5 percent increase for staff and 5 percent for the library director.

     The wages were set at: Michelle Turnis, $42,000; Penny Schmit, $27,934.40; MaDonna Thoma-Kremer, $25,708.80; and Molli Hunter, $7,417.80.

     • City Engineer Casey Zwolinski provided an update on the N. Sycamore Street Reconstruction project. The plans and specs have been filed, and Zwolinski said they’ve given sets of plans to 10 prime bidders.

     The project letting will be held on March 12, with a public hearing and awarding of the project on March 18 during the city council meeting.

     Weather pending, construction should start in April.

     • Herman asked the council to consider serving on two separate committees related to city matters: Sixth Street Ditch Project and the hiring of a new Public Works director.

     • While a closed session was highlighted on the council agenda, Herman said a closed session was not needed because the city no longer needed to file litigation.

     This matter concerned the Al Hughes’ house that was located on N. Chestnut Street. The house was destroyed in a fire in March 2017. The city has been working to obtain the deed to the property with no luck from Hughes. The city filed a lawsuit against Hughes. Since that filing, Hughes did pay $500 in cash and sign the deed over to the City of Monticello.

     “We wouldn’t have had to pay the taxes on the property if he’d signed the deed when he was supposed to,” noted Herman.

     “This has been a long time coming,” commented Council member Dave Goedken.

     The council voted to dismiss the lawsuit against Hughes and accept the money and signed deed.



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