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Napoleon City Council passed final readings on legislation Monday raising rental fees at shelter houses and a new three-year deal for an energy efficiency program.

The Napoleon Parks and Recreation Board recommended across the board fee increases for shelter house rentals, with the money from the increase to be used to help maintain the facilities.

The fee is roughly $5 across the board and will go into effect 30 days from passage of the ordinance, or shortly after the first of the year.

Council also passed a three-year deal with the Efficiency Smart program, which focuses on helping residents and businesses reduce energy consumption through efficiency.

In the past, residents could purchase more energy efficient light bulbs and receive credit for turning in older appliances and buying more efficient ones.

City Manager Joel Mazur said the new deal will feature a focus on reducing demand, and he hopes to find ways for the program to benefit smaller businesses, especially those downtown.

In other business, council:

•Approved second reading of legislation to repeal certain sections of city law dealing with firearms. There has been a change to state law concerning firearms and City Law Director Billy Harmon feels leaving the laws in place could leave the city vulnerable to lawsuits.

•Approved second reading of a resolution to extend the temporary reductions or eliminations of certain building fees associated with building residential housing.

•Approved second reading of several pieces of legislation dealing with the 2020 budget.

•Approved first reading of several pieces of legislation dealing with financial processes. City Finance Director Kelly O’Boyle said prior to her arrival some city funds would temporarily be in the red at times when payments were made on them until adjustments could be made quarterly. The changes should avoid this, while still giving council approval abilities.

•Officials will look into what needs to be done to get potholes fixed in the canal basin recycling area and whether it is possible to add a streetlight in the yard waste area.

•Following an executive session for personnel, council agreed to increase the pay rate for the finance director by 2.5%, and for the city manager and law director by 4.5% each.

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I started at the Northwest Signal in 1994 and became editor in 2004. I graduated from Bowling Green State University in 1994.

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