Alliant franchise, Market Street signage and ordinances headline Royal Council

Friday, August 10, 2018

ROYAL — The Royal City Council met Wednesday evening and held the first reading of the city’s franchise agreement with Alliant Energy. Due to previous discussion, the 25-year agreement will allow the city of Royal to opt-out at the 10th and 20th anniversary of the agreement’s adoption. The agreement also establishes a 2 percent franchise fee which will be collected by the city, replacing the previous 1 percent local option sales tax already collected on electrical bills within Royal City limits. Before its enactment, the ordinance will need to be read two more times and a public hearing will need to be held.

Signage on Market Street

Although no official action was required, the council discussed and agreed to have Royal Public Works Director Sherman Nielsen install speed limit signage on Market Street in Royal.

“The deputy just stopped in and said all the other streets entering town have a posted speed limit but Market does not, now once you’re in the city limits, unmarked is 25 mph unless posted otherwise,” Nielsen said. “And we’ve got two new 25 mph signs.”

A number of council members agreed they have seen motorists speed on the street.

“Go put it in the ground,” Councilman Josh Toft said.

“We’ll leave that up to you,” Royal Mayor Fluff Ihry said.

Enforcement of city ordinances

The council also addressed a concern by community members over the city parking ordinance. Over the July 4 holiday, a concerned community member issued a complaint over a single vehicle obstructing the sidewalk. The initial complaint was resolved. The council questioned their role in the enforcement and discretion of the ordinance.

“There were 13 other people in violation,” Councilwoman Arlene Wimmer said. “Our lawyer has told us before, that we are a small town, we can be a discretionary town. It also says in the state of Iowa code book that you cannot walk in the streets in a town. We do not have sidewalks all the way around.”

“90 percent of it is just personal issues,” Toft said. “We shouldn’t be the judges on that anyway.”

The council agreed to write a reminder to the community to “leave the sidewalk open.”

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