Council appoints to fill Ward 4 vacancy

A business owner from Minot’s Ward 4 became the newest member of the Minot City Council Tuesday.

The council appointed David Shomento to fill the vacancy created with the resignation of Milt Miller Aug. 18. A nearly life-long resident of Minot, Shomento spent a number of years in the banking business and now owns and operates Sammy’s Pizza. He will join the council Sept. 8 when the council meets to hold a public hearing on the city’s proposed 2015 budget.

Shomento and Richard Sabol, a former member of the Minot Park Board, both applied for the appointment. Sabol, a retired educator, served a term on the park board and represented Ward County on the all Seasons Arena Committee for two terms. He also served on the city forestry committee.

The other Ward 4 vacancy, created with the resignation of Amy Moen July 31, will be filled in the Nov. 4 election. Rick Hedberg and Wesley Magaster have filed to run.

Also at Tuesday’s meeting, city attorney Kelly Hendershot reported that about 400 notices were sent to owners of neglected, flooded properties regarding nuisance abatement. Owners have been ordered to repair the properties.

Hendershot said the city will prioritize properties and seek administrative search warrants when necessary. The warrants will enable city and First District Health Unit inspectors to go inside buildings if unable to get permission from owners. Based on those inspections, additional notices will be sent to owners, who would have up to 90 days to rehabilitate the properties before the city would take action.

The council also moved to begin demolition proceedings on additional houses being purchased in the buyout zone for flood protection. The city is in the process of buying about 113 homes. Each home will be evaluated to determine if it must be demolished or is eligible for resale and relocation.

At the recommendation of its Public Works and Safety Committee, the council approved a year-long moratorium on permits for alcoholic beverages and adult entertainment.

During the moratorium, there would be a review of existing regulations, including regulations on sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages and licensing of alcoholic beverage retailers and zoning of adult entertainment. There can be no permits, including building permits or site plans, approved for businesses with adult uses until the moratorium is lifted.

In other business, the council approved the notice of bond sales on $8.29 million in water and sewer utility reserve revenue bonds and $4.7 million in general obligation highway bonds. The council will schedule a public hearing on proposed projects for the airport and the issuance of airport revenue bonds to finance the projects.