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MINUTES–MORRIS CITY COUNCIL- REGULAR MEETING–FEBRUARY 28, 2012

The regular meeting of the Morris City Council was called to order at 5:15 p.m. this 28th          day of February, 2012, by Mayor Giese in the Council Chambers of the Morris Senior Citizens/Community Center.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE:  The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

ROLL CALL:  Roll call was taken with the following members present:  Council member   Webster, Miller, Storck and Mayor Giese.  Council member Carrington arrived at 5:19 p.m.  Also present was City Manager Hill, Finance Director Krosschell, Police Chief Beauregard and City Attorney Jordan. 

CITIZEN’S COMMENTS:  None

PUBLIC HEARINGS:  None

READING AND APPROVAL OF MINUTES:  2/14/12 Regular Meeting Minutes:  Council member Miller moved, seconded by Webster, to approve the 2/14/12 regular meeting minutes.   Motion carried.

2/14/12 Condensed Version Minutes:  Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Storck, to approve the 2/14/12 condensed version minutes.  Motion carried.

CONSENT AGENDA:  Council member Miller moved, seconded by Mayor Giese, to approve the consent agenda with the following items:

         A.      Audit of City Bills

         B.      SCMC Administrative Report

         C.      Gambling Reports 

         D.      Fund Summary/Revenue & Expenditure Report

         E.       Planning Commission Minutes, 1/17/12

         F.       Raffle License Report – UMM Baseball Team

         G.      Tourism Board Minutes - 1/18/12

Motion carried.

PETITIONS, REQUESTS AND COMMUNICATIONS:  None

ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS:   Resolution Approving an Agricultural Land Lease

The current operator can no longer farm the area around the airport so the city took bids to select a new operator to lease the land.  Hill stated he advertised for bids based on the original lease and the city received five of them.  There was discussion at a recent staff meeting about whether or not the area around the runway could be dug up for planting. It was determined that based on information from the State of Minnesota and the power company that there cannot be any row crops farmed within 500 feet of the runway.  There are also a lot of restrictions on what can and can't be done with the electrical equipment. 

Hill stated he made the assumption that the lease was correct but there are areas that are not supposed to be farmed.  There are also restrictions on mowing and the city probably hasn’t been mowing as much as they should have, but at the same time it was hay so it wasn’t a big deal.

Hill suggested the purpose of the land should continue on as hay and that no one be allowed to do anything other than that.  Hill talked with the farmer that had the highest bid and their intention was to farm the land and in doing so would be digging down 12 to 15 inches. 

Hill asked that the resolution be tabled until the next council meeting and he would have a recommendation as to what should be done, noting that the best thing to do may be to rebid it. 

Council member Webster moved, seconded by Carrington, to table the Resolution Approving an Agricultural Land Lease.  Motion carried.

CITY MANAGER’S REPORTS & RECOMMENDATIONSCity Manager Report:   Hill stated there was a question from last meeting on the meter bid and why it was higher.  Hill explained this was primarily due to the commercial meters.  The bigger meters that were replaced were expensive and the quantity was different than originally thought. 

Council member Storck asked when the city would know if this project paid for itself.  Finance Director Krosschell stated it is too early to tell because city staff is still in the transition period.  City staff could start doing some comparisons after a few more billing cycles.  Council member Miller believes as the city proceeds down the road it’s important to make sure the meters are accurate, whether that’s through an audit or some other means.    

Hill indicated nothing has been done with the airport tug at this point.  Hill stated the bottom line is that a $3 million dollar airplane shouldn’t be moved with a tractor.  Hill pointed out the state of Minnesota would fund 50% of any piece of equipment.  Hill stated what he is looking at is that as an airport the city should have something to move planes in and out.  There has been discussion about building another hangar eventually as there is a waiting list for planes that want space at the airport. Hill noted city staff wouldn't be responsible for moving the planes.   

NEW BUSINESS:  None

OLD BUSINESS:  None 

INFORMATIONAL ITEMS:  None

ADJOURNMENT:  There being no further business, Mayor Giese adjourned the meeting at 5:53 p.m.

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