On Monday the McPherson City Commission concluded it wasn’t necessary to require ice and water shields on construction within the city.

On Monday the McPherson City Commission concluded it wasn’t necessary to require ice and water shields on construction within the city.
The commission received input from City Inspector Bret Reynolds, insurance industry representative Richard Wilborn and local contractors before arriving at this conclusion.
Experts stated the installation of the product is recommended for use in areas with mean average temperatures of 25 degrees or less in their coldest months. In comparison, McPherson’s mean average temperature last December was 32 degrees, and last January’s mean average temperate was 30 degrees, both above the recommendation.
The city also pointed out that buildings and residences which suffered problems that could have been avoided or minimized by usage of the product were isolated rather than widespread.
Installation of the product also would result in an incremental rise of insurance premiums for the area due to its questionable necessity based on the mean temperature data.
A 2009 city zoning requirement states this type of ice barrier product, which, when installed, runs from the eaves of a structure into the inner walls to create a barrier against water, is to be used in areas where ice buildup on eaves has caused water backup on roofs, potentially resulting in water damage inside the structure.
As changing or removing the ordinance could result in eliminated insurance coverage for cases in which such damage occurs, the city approved a plan for city attorney Jeff Houston to draft an interpretation of the ordinance explaining that the installation of the product was at the discretion of property owners. Once finished, this interpretation will be sent to the McPherson Contractors Association to be reviewed.
“I don’t see a need to change the code,” Mayor Tom Brown said. “There’ve been isolated situations, but we have no widespread history of these problems.”

Grievance Policy
City Attorney Jeff Houston introduced an updating of the city and Board of Public Utilities grievance policy.
The update would allow an employee of the city or BPU to bring grievances to their supervisors and, should that not result in a resolution, be able to take the grievance to the next higher level of supervision.
If an employee believes the chain of command is not appropriate, in the case of the city the employee can address their grievance with the City Administrator, and, in the case of BPU, the employee can address the grievance with the Human Resources Officer.

Construction Permits
City Inspector Bret Reynolds presented the October monthly building inspection summary report. Out of six new structure permits in October, three were for new single family dwellings and three were commercial. Five new additions to existing structures and 111 maintenance permits also were issued.

Other business
In other business, the city commission:
• Approved a Turkey Trot 5K to take place Saturday, Nov. 23. The event, sponsored by the United Way of McPherson County and the McPherson Family Life Center, will benefit McPherson Family Life Center’s counseling and parent support programs.
• Approved a Free2Run 5K organized by Central Christian College and the Set Free Movement, an organization dedicated to ending slavery worldwide. The event will take place Nov. 16.
• Approved usage of Hess Park as a contractor staging area during work on the Oxford Pointe drainage project.
• Approved increasing Wilson and Company’s contract on the Oxford Pointe drainage project from $850,000 to $864,000 in order to cover costs of regional detention and sediment control basins.
• Approved paying Pace Analytical $1,800 to perform a Whole Effluent Toxicity Test at the wastewater treatment plant. The test is required by federal law.
• Approved an additional $3,000 expenditure for spraying grass and hay fields due to an infestation of pig weed, bringing the total spraying cost to $6,500.
• Approved removing and replacing the valley gutter at the intersection of Fifth and Maple to construct a smoother driving surface at a cost not to exceed $2,100 for materials.
• Approved payment of $1,260 to Third Strategy LLC for leadership training.

Next meeting
The next meeting of the McPherson City Commission has been moved to 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday Nov. 12 due to the Veterans’ Day holiday on Monday. It will remain at the McPherson Municipal Building.