NEW – Late Fee

If payment of delinquent bills is not received by 5:00PM the day BEFORE the DISCONNECT DATE, the account is considered delinquent and will be assessed a $25 LATE FEE.

If the account remains delinquent, it will be scheduled for SHUT-OFF on the 25th day of the month (unless the 25th falls on a Friday, Saturday, Sunday or Holiday, then the next regular business day).  A $25 DISCONNECT/TURN-ON FEE will be assessed.

To restore service, the account must be paid IN FULL, including LATE FEE and DISCONNECT/TURN-ON FEES.

This policy will go into effect in November 2015.

New Water/Sewer Rates Now In Effect

The City Council approved rate increases for both water and sewer that are now in effect and will be reflected on July1, 2015 billing.  The base rates for water and sewer will be $27.39 and $26.28 respectively for up to 4,000 gallons of water usage.  The per 1,000 gallon rate over the 4,000 gallons will remain the same at $1.58.  Please contact City Hall if you have any questions.

New Library Website

Glenys Rasmussen, the newest edition to the City Staff, has implemented a new website for the library.  It includes information on services and activities.  Keep up to date with them here.

About Town – Swimming Pool

The Parma Swimming Pool had its beginning with the community minded Parma Lions Club, when in June 1959 the pool had its grand opening. It was referred to as “Memorial Pool” according to the plaque near the pool entrance door. In 1981, a memorial grant from the Community Foundation in memory of long time Parma Review newspaper, owner, editor and publisher Theron Gough, was awarded to the City for a solar heat exchanger. The heat exchanger was mounted on the roof of city hall with a collector in a city hall store room. The system was marginally effective and after a period of about 15 years was finally removed. Again, in 2005, the Parma Lion’s Club, along with a substantial donation from an anonymous donor, completed a major renovation of the pool. Several years ago, roofs were added over the dressing rooms as well as re-surfacing of the deck. A year ago this past spring, the pool was completely repainted by Canyon County Inmate Labor program. New pool furniture has been purchased over the last several years. In addition, last year a handicapped chair lift was installed according to  requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Southwest District Health District makes four visits (one each month of operation) in addition to the pre-opening visit. All comments were positive and compliments were given to the manager and staff with regard to the cleanliness of the pool, deck, and especially the changing rooms. The staffing of the pool during busy times, according to the inspector, was very appropriate. In addition, the inspector approved of the rotation schedule of the guards during the hottest part of the day.

Besides Parma, swim lessons were given to students from Nyssa, Adrian, Middleton, Vale, Wilder, Homedale, Fruitland, Payette, Ontario, and Notus. There were 244 swim lessons taught this year, up from 221 lessons last year. Twenty-four private lessons were taught, this up from 18 the previous year. General comments from parents, with regard to swimming instruction, has all been very positive. Most comments focused on the fact that two instructors were available for each small group, and on occasion there were at least three in the very youngest groups. There were a few lessons that could not be accommodated because of time constraints and the fact that all of the swim instructors were completely booked.

There were 48 paid swim team members. The Parma team hosted one swim meet. There are plans underway to host two swim meets next year. Leadership of the swim team has remained the same for last several years. Many parents were also actively involved during the swim meet to help it run more smoothly. There was great enthusiasm among both the participants and spectators with regard to the running of the meet.

Pool management has also remained the same since the YMCA gave up management about three years ago. The pool manager insists on rigorous training for the life guards and the continual refresher trainings that occur through the season. The staff was able to work directly with the Parma EMT’s at a special two hour training in late July.

As always, your comments and questions may be given to me at 722-5138 or emailed to me at nleigh@parmacityhall.net.

About Town – Recycling

As I drive around town, especially on trash days, I cannot help but notice the sometimes over-flowing trash receptacles and cardboard boxes piled nearby, waiting to be hauled away. I wonder if many people know that a recycling center is located within the city limits. The recycling center is run by the Parma Senior Citizen Center at 410 North 8th Street.

The recycling building is located at the far side of the parking lot with a large sign over the door. The attendant, Mr. A.J. Campbell, who happens to be a past Honored Senior, is there several days a week and keeps the building in order by putting up new bins and going through the materials left there.

The Senior Center receives money for the recycled materials, helping to offset the cost of their monthly bills. If more materials were recycled, more money could be generated for the seniors who use the center. The materials are picked up twice a month and a check is sent to the Center monthly.

What materials does the recycling center accept? Here is the list. Cut out this article and post it in a place where it will remind you of what you can take to be recycled.

  • PLASTIC – Number 1 and 2 and milk containers. On the bottom of most plastic containers is a triangle with a number printed on the inside. If it is a 1 or a 2, then it can be recycled at the Parma center. Most grocery plastic bags are a number 2 and can be donated to the center as well.
  • ALUMINUM – All aluminum can be recycled. Beverage containers with pull tabs, disposable cooking pans, cooking foil, and many other products are recyclable.
  • TIN – Nearly all product containers that have to be opened with a can opener are tin and are accepted. Wire coat hangers can also be recycled.
  • CARDBOARD – All corrugated cardboard as well as all paper food product boxes, including all brown paper bags can be recycled.
  • NEWSPRINT – Newspapers, including all advertising, is accepted at the local center.
  • MAGAZINES – All magazines are accepted for recycling.

Materials can be dropped off at the recycling center building at any time. The door is never locked but is often just closed. If you have questions regarding what can be recycled, please call the Parma Senior Citizen Center office at 722-5421.

If you have questions concerning City business, please call me at 722-5138 or
email me at nleigh@parmacityhall.net.

About Town – One Month in the Life

This week’s column concerns my activities as Mayor for the month of October. This will give my readers a brief idea of what I do as your mayor. Each month is different while some months have more or fewer activities. I meet with Chief Erickson, police department, and Ken Steinhaus, public works supervisor, several times a week, not because I want them to but because they want to keep me informed as to what is happening in their area of expertise.

On October 1, I attended a Basic Airport Training Workshop in McCall. I was unable to attend an earlier meeting in Nampa because of a conflict in dates. This meeting helped me understand the needs of our own airport, the opportunities for upgrades, and gave me names of individuals I could call when questions arose. As I knew little about our airport, this workshop gave me a much better grasp of the knowledge I needed to understand the needs and opportunities for our facility.

October 9 was the evening meeting of our Rural Fire and EMS board meeting at the Parma Firehouse, referred to as Station 1. For your information, Station 2 is located at Nuhems on Anderson Corner Road. I have attended the last several, not because I have anything to offer, but I believe it is important to understand other jurisdictions. All of us pay taxes to support the Rural Fire and EMS so it is important to understand what they do.

On Friday, October 10, the city clerk, police chief and myself attended the Public Risk Management Association (PRIMA) conference in Boise. This conference gave us information regarding claims and lawsuits, public records, open meetings, spending public dollars, and several other meaningful topics.

Monday, October 13 was the first of two evening city council meetings. Reports were heard from the police chief and our city engineer regarding proposed developments. Tuesday saw me working in the kitchen to serve the Lion’s Club their noon meal. I began volunteering as a helper with the women’s group who cooks meals when I moved back to Parma after my retirement in 2008. I have continued to assist that group since then. Wednesday, I attended an elementary school staff meeting to encourage the teachers to take the opportunity to visit city hall and city council chambers. I have also made myself available at the middle school and high school for talks about city government. Thursday, I attended an Idaho Power sponsored Economic Development Forum in Ontario. I learned much I will be using as Parma begins the process of developing its own economic development association in the coming months.

Tuesday, Oct 21, I hosted the lunch meeting of the Western Alliance of Economic Development at Peg Leg Bistro. The city pays annual dues to this group. I am the vice-chairman and ran the meeting this time in the absence of the Chairman. On Wednesday I attended a meeting in Meridian to get a better idea of the workings of Community Planning Association (COMPASS), so to understand the impact this group may have on the city and surrounding area. I also met with officials from Valley Regional Transit for the same reason.

On Friday the 24th, I visited with the city engineer to discuss long range planning for both storm water and waste water upgrades and what will be needed in the next three years to meet new more restrictive waste water requirements. We also made arrangements to develop pans for a pedestrian bridge over the drain at the Idaho Power Park along Valley Road and Walker Road.

October 27 was the second of two monthly city council meetings. The council approved a surplus property resolution so that we can remove an old police car from service and remove from inventory all of the old signs that are currently being replaced through out town. The council also approved renewing the contract for our auditors. The council heard, in executive session, an update from our attorney regarding the pending litigation.

On October 28 and 29, Public works director Ken Steinhaus and I traveled to Boise to view Idaho Transportation Department surplus equipment and to make a bid on a surplus air compressor. Unfortunately, we were unable to acquire it and will have to rent a compressor to blow out sprinkler lines in all of the parks.

October was a busy month as I continue to learn and understand all the things that make a city move smoothly through time. If you have questions, please call me at 722-5138 or email me at nleigh@parmacityhall.net.

About Town – Mutual Cooperation Pt 2

Last week I took the entire column in explaining the relationship the City has Notus – Parma Highway District. The Highway District is not the only business in town that the city has a mutual cooperation relationship with. I am quite sure that other smaller communities have similar relationships. It is a great benefit to the citizens and the city specifically to cultivate these mutual cooperation relationships.

When the city has domestic water issues with our wells, the first businesses we contact is either Agri-Lines Irrigation or Riverside Electric, Inc. More often than not, these companies will dispatch the needed men and equipment to the problem well and the necessary work gets done. Though the city is billed for the labor and materials, what is important is that the city can rely on these businesses to come to our aid very quickly. The down time of the well can often be measured in hours as opposed to days if it were necessary to call an out of town business.

There have been many times in the past where the city has taken advantage of the Sheriff’s Inmate Labor Department (SILD) for a wide variety of projects. The most recent projects included power washing the Library building, painting the swimming pool, and repainting park playground equipment.

Another group that has assisted the city on numerous occasions is the Lion’s Club. Recent projects included the purchase and installation of playground equipment at America’s Park on the south side and swimming pool park. Many hours have gone into upgrades at the swimming pool as well. The Lion’s Club will be installing a covered picnic area near the swimming pool probably next spring. Be sure and purchase your turkey raffle tickets from a member to help fund community projects.

Crop Production Services has assisted the city with their community service programs over the years. One of their projects was to supply the picnic tables at Old Fort Boise Park. The Senior Citizens Center is a wonderful asset for the entire community and surrounding area. Of course, the Rural Fire Department and Emergency Medical Technicians are without equal in our community and should be thanked and supported by everyone who lives in the area.

The men of the Co-op Ditch Company have saved the city many hours of work by assisting the city crew when it comes to cleaning the laterals on the south side of the railroad tracks. Hartman Farms have loaned the city equipment. Parma Post and Pole have donated material to projects the city wanted to undertake. JC Watson Company and Top Air have allowed the city to borrow hysters when the city needed a lifting machine.

Parma Company, True Value Hardware, Mike’s Automotive, Troxel’s Garage, and Bruce and Rod’s have all helped in their own unique ways.

The Parma School District has helped when the city has had projects that involve school property by lending manpower to the effort. The Canyon County Mosquito Abatement team has even made themselves available at unusual times to help the city in their effort to curb those pesky mosquitoes.

Idaho Power has done a superb job with the park below the electrical sub-station. This is their project and property. Congratulations on a job well done. It is a nice small park that was needed in the north end of the city. A pedestrian bridge will be built across the drain by Parma Post and Pole. Picnic tables will be added later in the spring.

I have no doubt left some business out and for that I apologize but I would very much like to thank the Parma business community on a cooperative job well done. It is with community minded folks like you that our Parma is a far better place in which we call home. Thank you all so very much.