SEPTEMBER 6, 2016
The Regular Meeting of the Lake Benton City Council was held on Tuesday, September 6, 2016 at 5:30 P.M. in the Heritage Center/City Office. Mayor Barb Powell presided. Trustees Al Lindemann, Diann Powell, Jack Redlinger, and Bob Worth were present. City Attorney Mike Cable absent. City Administrator/Clerk Eileen Christensen, Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper, Sandy Dahl, Dan Kuss, Robin McChesney, Vince Robinson, and Scott Christensen were also present.
Mayor Barb Powell called the meeting to order.
The Pledge of Allegiance was recited by all present.
Mayor Barb Powell then asked if anyone in attendance had an item, not on the agenda, to bring up during the Open Forum part of the meeting. If so they had two minutes to state their concern.
Dan Kuss was present to explain to the Council the status on Mr. Smith who has been staying in his vehicle at the Lakeside Park. Dan has been working with a lot of people in the last three to four weeks and is just a couple days away from getting him into a home. Dan has been working with the Sheriff’s Office and the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans and there isn’t a lot they can do unless Mr. Smith wants the help. Dan found a home they can rent to him from Marlian Petersen. The house is not quite ready to be moved into at this time, but this will help expedite getting him into a home before the cold weather sets in. His expenses are fiduciary so his rent and utilities will be paid.
The minutes of the Regular Meeting of August 15, 2016 were reviewed. MOTION by Diann Powell, seconded by Al Lindemann to approve the minutes of the Regular Meeting of August 15, 2016. Motion carried.
The minutes of the Special Budget Meeting of August 22, 2016 were reviewed. MOTION by Bob Worth, seconded by Diann Powell to approve the minutes of the Special Budget Meeting of August 22, 2016. Motion carried.
The minutes of the Special Budget Meeting of August 29, 2016 were reviewed. MOTION by Al Lindemann, seconded by Bob Worth to approve the minutes of the Special Budget Meeting of August 29, 2016. Motion carried.
A question arose from the Council in regards to the August 15, 2016 minutes that the City paid Thor Tollefson to attend the August 1, 2016 meeting. Should we give money or comp time to those employees that attend the meetings. It was also questioned to the Mayor if she is getting paid to take minutes at the Tyler Council meetings. Mayor Powell replied it depends on how much time she puts in and how much time she takes off. It was suggested to pay two hours comp time per month for those employees that attend meetings. The Police Chief is usually on duty when attending the Council meetings. Thor received extra pay because it wasn’t his meeting to attend. It was again suggested to pay one hour per meeting to Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper and City Administrator/Clerk Eileen Christensen. This doesn’t need to be comp time or overtime (time and a half), just make it one hour per meeting. This item was tabled until the next meeting of September 19, 2016.
claims presented against the city of lake benton:
OTTERTAIL $ 2,048.58 LMC – BERKLEY ADMIN $ 12,711.00
USTI $ 11.12 L-P RURAL WATER $ 3,596.64
GOPHER STATE $ 6.75 S & E AUTO $ 97.70
UTILITY CONSULTANTS $ 457.75 TODD DRAPER $ 43.00
PAT HAYNES $ 240.00 MINNESOTA LIFE $ 6.80
LAKE BENTON CHAMBER $ 198.68 MN DEPT OF HEALTH $ 516.00
NEVE’S UNIFORMS $ 252.90 TROY NORDMEYER $ 32.00
VERIZON $ 35.03 ONE OFFICE SOLUTIONS $ 128.09
BUFFALO RIDGE NEWS $ 249.40 PLUM CREEK LIBRARY $ 68.74
CENTER POINT LG PRINT $ 70.00
MOTION by Bob Worth, seconded by Diann Powell to approve payment of the claims presented against the City of Lake Benton. Motion carried.
Acting Police Chief AJ Anderson was unable to attend the meeting but included the Police Report for August in the Council packet. It was questioned how many hours Acting Police Chief Alex “AJ” Anderson will be working. Mayor Barb Powell said she does not know but it will be less than Tony Sievert who just became licensed. Acting Police Chief AJ Anderson said Tony is not ready to be on his own yet but AJ will report to the Council when he feels Tony is ready. Cole Nordmeyer finished Tony’s driving training this past weekend. Tony is licensed on POST Board, and although AJ’s report showed Tony’s POST required firearms had not been completed when AJ wrote his report, Tony did complete his POST required firearms training and is now a licensed officer.
MOTION by Al Lindemann, seconded by Diann Powell to approve the August police report. Motion carried.
The next item of business was to meet with residents regarding their properties. Mickey Duehn at 209 S. Fremont stopped in the City office and said there is not a lot of garbage in his garage but it is mostly totes of items left by his daughter living in Luverne. His truck is broke down and he is going to get a boy to help him with a pick-up. Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper contacted the owner David Swanson who will be checking on the property as well.
RJ Fleet at 223 S. Fremont was unable to attend the meeting but sent a letter to the Council explaining the bees were taken care of on July 4, 2016 and included pictures to verify this has been taken care of. The structure of the house is okay but the windows are open and the shed beside it is bad. There could be other animals living in these structures. Mayor Barb Powell will ask Acting Police Chief AJ to talk with RJ Fleet and find out what he plans to do with the building and shed.
Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper then informed the Council that Dave Nordmeyer had a rat in his window well over the weekend. Todd talked with Bob Worth who told him to contact Minn-Kota Pesticide and ask what they can do for the City. Todd is waiting for a call back from them. Discussion then took place on where did the rats come from – there are several compost piles and gardens, and rats like food; did they get imported or move in from somewhere; is it due to the abundance of summer rains the City has received. It is known that these are not sewer rats, these rats can be seen during the day and residents will see gnawing and droppings. This is a serious problem and they are moving fast. Mayor Barb Powell stated Plunkett’s Pest Control was at the City of Tyler and they cannot do anything in the City until the residents give permission for them to do something. It was discussed to check the City’s options. MOTION by Bob Worth, seconded by Jack Redlinger to request Minn-Kota Pesticide come and research the rat problem. If there is a problem, Todd will let the Council know at the next meeting as he probably won’t hear back from Minn-Kota until next week due to this being their busy part of the season. Motion carried.
The next item of business was to meet with Vince Robinson regarding the Lake Benton HRA. This item was tabled from the last regular meeting of August 15, 2016 until additional information could be obtained as what to do with the Lake Benton HRA. Vince addressed the Council and explained that in the pre-1970’s Legislation authorized HRA’s, meaning every City has an HRA, but no HRA should exercise powers if requested. In the 1970 Cooperation Agreement with the City, the City identified a need for the HRA to assist with housing development for low to moderate income individuals.
In the 1980’s, Legislation authorized EDA’s and every City could establish an EDA on their own with an enabling resolution. The powers of the EDA could limit the HRA powers. The EDA resolution created in 1990 required approval of the City Council and the City determines what their powers are. To enable the EDA to take over the HRA – whether you say the EDA obtained the powers of the HRA and later determine to take the powers away from the EDA and reestablish another HRA, you can do so. Until then, the EDA can do this and has done this with the two 4-plexes in which they needed permission from the HRA to accept those powers. The Lincoln County HRA has jurisdiction over the Lake Benton HRA and the EDA is already acting with the HRA authorities by default. The City can choose to abolish the HRA and authorize the EDA to take over the HRA.
It was questioned if low income families make a difference between the EDA and the HRA. Vince stated the EDA has the authority to offer low income housing, and most cities let the HRA go to the EDA. State Statute gives you the right to reestablish the HRA within the community and there will be no big legal process except a government public hearing and complete it by resolution.
The Bylaws require an annual meeting of the HRA in which the audit report is prepared and presented at the annual Lincoln County HRA meeting as well as for the City. If there is no HRA, representatives from the City, the City Council can attend. MOTION by Bob Worth, seconded by Diann Powell to dissolve the HRA to the EDA. Motion carried.
The next item of business was to review/act on a building permit for Scott Meyer to build a 12’ x 24’ garage at 108 S. Sherman Street. Scott was given the setbacks from the property line on which he can build a garage on an existing structure. Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper confirmed there were no setback concerns and everything is in compliance with the Ordinance. The fee of $25.00 has been paid. MOTION by Diann Powell, seconded by Al Lindemann to approve the building permit for Scott Meyer to build a 12’ x 24’ garage at 108 S. Sherman Street. Motion carried.
The next item of business was to review/act on a building permit for Jim Redlinger to build a 30’ x 53.8’ house with an attached garage at 607 Home Street. Jim was given the setbacks from the property line on which he can build a house with an attached garage. Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper confirmed there were no setback concerns and everything is in compliance with the Ordinance. The fee of $25.00 has been paid. MOTION by Bob Worth, seconded by Al Lindemann to approve the building permit for Jim Redlinger to build a 30’ x 53.8’ house with an attached garage at 607 Home Street. Motion carried.
PUBLIC WORKS UPDATE:
Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper informed the Council that Banner and Associates will have an agreement for Council approval and signature for Coteau Street at the next regular Council meeting of September 19, 2016. Legal Council has reviewed the agreement and approved it as well.
Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper then informed the Council of the parking issues on Parkview Drive. He said the old Ordinance states 48 hour parking and the new Ordinances does not say a specific time limit. Todd put a “no parking” sticker on a vehicle that was parked on Parkview Drive for a week and listened to the unruly owner of the vehicle yell at him. Todd informed the individual they are in violation. A few moments later, the individual moved the car one car length ahead. However, the Council can post a sign 24, 48 or 72 inches that states: “72 Hour Parking – Vehicle must be removed from street or towed at owner’s expense.”
After some discussion, it was the consensus of the Council to hold off on getting the sign and to authorize Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper to talk with the Building Manager, Kenny Nielsen, and the owners of the property to ask if the residents can park on the grass because of the parking issues on Parkview Drive and winter coming in the next couple months.
Maintenance Supervisor Todd Draper then informed the Council of the on-going problem with the discharge from the eaves trough in the alley behind the manor. It is a complete wash-out at times and Todd will speak with Daryl Trigg to put a roll-over curb on the bottom on the east side. He will contact Fuller to get prices as well.
Fall Appliance pick-up will be Tuesday, September 20, 2016 and an ad will be placed in the newspaper as well as on the local access channel.
Trustee Diann Powell requested Todd Draper to make sure he padlocks the football and baseball field restrooms when he padlocks the restroom on Lakeside Park after Labor Day.
The 2017 budget was included with the Council packet for their consideration and review. If there are no changes or corrections, the Council can certify the proposed tax levy at the next regular meeting of September 19, 2016. It was the suggestion to propose a 4% levy increase in the case of an equipment breakdown and/or unexpected project requiring funds in 2017. The Council was reminded the final levies may be lowered but not raised when they finalize the levy before December 28, 2016. The Council then agreed to increase the proposed levy by 4% in the case of an equipment breakdown and/or an unexpected project requiring funds in 2017.
There being no further business to come before the Council at this time, a MOTION was made by
Bob Worth, seconded by Al Lindemann and carried, the meeting adjourned.