See this story from the weekend edition of the LCL.

The Brookfield City Council met in regular session this week, with new Councilpersons Sarah Wessing and Paul Frey taking office. At this meeting, the council reorganized, and several new codes were added to the city’s books.

The biggest news from the reorganization, though, was the announcement by now-former Mayor Martha Beach that she would not seek to be mayor again. This left the floor open for nominations, and Lonnie Trentham was elected Mayor by a unanimous vote. Dr. Paul Barger was elected unanimously as Mayor Pro-Tem.

With the council sworn into office, and the new Mayor and Mayor Pro-Tem in place, the meeting continued.

Several items were added to the city’s code book, in their continuing efforts to update the official codes for the city. The first set of new codes approved related to animals in the city limits.

These were four new ordinances added by unanimous vote:

1. A uniform impounding and reclamation procedure for all animals. This includes varying costs, depending on the animal. An example given by City Attorney Adam Warren was that it is cheaper for the city to impound, house, and feed a cat, as opposed to a horse.

2. For the first time in approximately 20 years, the license fees for animals will rise in Brookfield. The fee for a male dog or a fixed female will be $5. The fee for a non-fixed female will be $7.

3. A limit will be in place allowing no more than four cats over the age of six months, and four dogs over the age of six months. Anyone with more animals than this will have five years to get under the limit.

4. A banning of the sale or keeping of any wild animal, exotic animal, poisonous reptile in the city limits. Concerns about the keeping of animals such as goats, deer, or llamas was voiced by the council, and Warren assured the council that these animals would fall under livestock, and would not be affected by this new code.

The next series of ordinances affect traffic violations. The following changes were approved unanimously:

1. Local code now matches state statute concerning tinted windows,

2. A fire hydrant and a fire plug were differentiated in the language of the codes. The fine for parking within a distance of a fire hydrant is now set at parking within 15 feet.

3. The definition of leaving the scene of an accident was clarified in code, and matches state law.

In other council news:

- The Planning Committee recommended the splitting of a subdivision into seven lots at the corner of Hunt and Adams. The city attorney will draft an ordinance to be presented next month to make this official.

- An ordinance to amend the water purchasing agreement with the City of Brookfield and PWSD #3 of Linn and Chariton County was approved. This amends the contract to run for 35 years, and was recommended by USDA. The City of Brookfield can raise the rates charged, but the contract had to be for the time mentioned above, or USDA would not approve it.

- A citizen asked about the pool, and City Manager Dana Tarpening assured the public that things were on track for the contractual completion date of May 19. The pool is scheduled to open for Memorial Day weekend.

- Councilwoman Martha Beach commended the city’s Tree Board and the Blue Pride Leo Club for their work on Earth Day to plant nine new trees in South City Park.