Tonight, the Pierre City Commission updated three different sections of local ordinance. The first deals the City’s 911 Dispatch Center; the second is related to local security company licensing; the third is in preparation for the City’s new water treatment facility.
911 DISPATCH CENTER (Ordinance 1804)
The Commission voted to funnel 911 surcharges that are already being collected by the State of South Dakota directly to the City, rather than have the money funnel from the State to Hughes County and then to the City.
“This ordinance change does not result in any fee change for any customers,” said Police Chief Jason Jones. “It simply provides a more direct route for the money collected to get from point A to point B.”
The City operates the 911 Dispatch Center located at the Mickelson Criminal Justice Center in Pierre. City employees at the Dispatch Center are responsible for answering 911 calls from Hughes County, as well as four other surrounding counties, in addition to dispatching for federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies along with fire and emergency medical services.
SECURITY COMPANY LICENSING (Ordinance 1803)
After being approached by a local security company for review of current ordinance language, City staff recommended and the City Commission approved changes to the local merchant security licensing ordinance. The changes modernize the licensing process, update the licensing fee structure, and bring local ordinance into alignment with current state law.
“Previously, local ordinance disallowed security company employees from carrying a gun,” said Chief Jones. “Because the state has gotten less restrictive regarding open carry permits, locally, we want to afford our security companies those state rights.”
WATER TREATMENT FACILITY (Ordinance 1799)
Tonight, the Pierre City Commission took action to pave the way for the City’s new Water Treatment Facility.
A portion of the new facility will be paid for with a loan from the South Dakota Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). Terms of the loan require that the City put in ordinance language setting aside a portion of collected water fees for repayment of the loan. With its action tonight, the Commission did just that.
Additionally, it mapped out water rate increases through 2023.
“The water increases we’re talking about tonight, are the same ones we have been talking about since before the project went to a public vote,” said Brad Palmer, City Utilities Director. “When these rate increases are all in place, the average residential customer can expect to pay an additional $1 a day for water.”
Each of the three ordinance changes were heard previously at City Commission meetings and were brought back tonight for final action.