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MINUTES –MORRIS CITY COUNCIL REGULAR MEETING – APRIL 9, 2013

The regular meeting of the Morris City Council was called to order at 5:15 p.m. this 9th day of April, 2013, 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 Wohlers, Miller, Storck and Mayor Giese. Council member Solvie was absent.  Also present was City Manager Hill, Finance Director Raasch, Police Chief Beauregard and City Attorney Jordan. 

CITIZEN’S COMMENTS:  Brian Kruize, general manager of Morris Coop, was present at the meeting.  Kruize stated the Morris Coop would like to have city water run to their bulk center.  They will have an 80 x 150 seed warehouse with six bulk tanks and a 6,000 ton dry fertilizer plant.  They will be constructing a crop protection warehouse and an agronomy office this summer.  Kruize explained they need water for their custom application.  Their water usage is about 84,000 cubic feet.  Kruize indicated he would like to see a hydrant near there also for fire protection, not only for his business but the fire protection area that Morris and Donnelly services.

Wohlers asked how many employees Morris Coop has.  Kruize stated there are 17 full time employees and 5 part time, with an additional 8 employees for seasonal work.

Miller asked how much of the by product would be coming back into the sewer system with the application of the equipment.  Kruize stated all the buildings are designed to meet the Department of Ag specifications so there would be no contamination whatsoever. 

Kruize suggested a private line as an option.  Kruize asked that the idea be looked into to come up with a plan to see if it’s even a possibility to make it work.  Kruize pointed out the city sewer now goes up to the county garage so it’s not that much further to their business.  Kruize did note that sewer would not be as big of a deal as getting water.  Kruize stated they currently have two meters just like a residential lawn system. 

Hill explained that this business is not in city limits so the first thing is that it would have to be annexed into the city.  Hill stated then, as a property owner, the Coop would have to convince the council that this is a project that they should initiate and a feasibility study would need to be done.  Hill pointed out the county has sewer but another line cannot be hooked up to theirs.  Hill noted there is water at the corner of highway 9 and 28 but the city cannot run a line where there is no city right of way.  Hill stated the other way that utilities can be run is to have 100% of the property owners say they want water and sewer run across their property.  Hill noted any new construction that takes place is paid 100% by the developer.   Hill pointed out the only other group that has water outside of the city limits is the city of Alberta.

Kruize questioned that the city of Alberta is not annexed and they have city water.  Hill stated Alberta is a separate government entity so that is a completely different situation. Hill indicated it would set precedence if the city ran water and sewer out to anyone that asked for it.  Hill doesn’t know how a private line could be run from the city’s connection or how a private line could be run though the ditch.  Hill stated he is not recommending the city proceed with a project like this.

Kruize asked if it would work to run it from the intersection of 28 and 59.  Hill noted the city still wouldn’t own the road right of way.  Storck suggested that if a line was put in it be made big enough because the county, along with Sayles, may want to hook on.   Miller stated it is interesting to see where this is and what the city has available.  Miller indicated he is happy the Coop decided to locate in that area and would like to look into it and try and help them out. 

Kruize stated they need all their buildings operational by the spring of 2014.  Storck indicated he can understand why they want to do what they’re suggesting. Hill stated City Engineer Fier had some preliminary figures for a project like this and he would be back at the end of the month to take a look at this.  The cost could be figured out before annexation would be considered. 

Hill asked the council if the city is willing to invest their money in a project for one business, with the hope that someday more development may occur.  The city already knows where they are for funding.  Hill indicated the first thing that would need to happen is that they be annexed. Then as a property owner in the city you have the right to petition to get utilities.  Hill stated then it's a question of who pays for it.  

Giese stated it is going to cost someone money but it would be a long term benefit to the city.  Storck added that if they were annexed they would then be paying taxes.  Hill stated staff would run some numbers and come back to the council.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:   None

READING AND APPROVAL OF MINUTES3/26/13 Regular Meeting Minutes:  Council member Miller moved, seconded by Wohlers, to approve the 3/26/13 regular meeting minutes.  Motion carried.

3/26/13 Condensed Version Minutes:  Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Storck, to approve the 3/26/13 condensed version minutes.  Motion carried.

CONSENT AGENDA:  Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Wohlers, to approve the consent agenda which included the following items:

         A.      Audit of City Bills

         B.      March Transit Report

         C.      Gambling Reports

         D.      Application for Exempt Permit – AmVets       

         E.       Raffle License Report

Motion carried.

 

PETITIONS, REQUESTS AND COMMUNICATIONS:  None

ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONSResolution Approving a Post-Issuance Debt Compliance Policy and Post-Issuance Debt Compliance Procedures:  Mark Ruff of Ehlers and Associates, the city's financial advisors, was present at the meeting to discuss a new IRS initiative.  Ruff stated the IRS is questioning governments and how they use tax exempt bonds.  The IRS wants to make sure specific regulations are being followed.  Ruff explained one of the forms submitted with tax exempt bonds has a box that asks if you have a post issuance debt compliance policy.  The majority of the reason they’re asking for this policy is so that they can check that box on the paperwork.  Ruff indicated this lessens the chance of being questioned by the IRS and recommended the council adopt this policy. 

Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Storck, to adopt Resolution #3149-4-13, Resolution Approving a Post Issuance Debt Compliance Policy and Post-Issuance Debt Compliance Procedures.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Ruff talked about the city’s upcoming bond issue for $2,955,000.  Ruff stated a portion of this bond issue will pay for the 2013 street and utility project.  Ruff anticipates the interest rate should be well under 3%.  The assessments are for a term of 15 years, with payments beginning in 2014.  The second part of the bond proceeds, for approximately $800,000, will go towards the demolition of the school.  Ruff stated the projected TIF is not quite enough to pay off the whole cost of the $800,000 so that will be bumped into the debt service for 2019 through 2023.  Hill noted the land may be sold which would generate some revenue.  Ruff indicated taxpayers are not going to have to pick up any portion of the demolition which is nice.  Ruff explained the third purpose for the bond is a small refunding of the 2005A.  This bond currently has an outstanding interest rate of just over 4% and by doing this it will drop the borrowing rate by 2% which will reduce the levy in future years.  Ruff stated they will be working with Moody’s for the bond rating.  The city is currently at an A1 and Ruff does not expect any change.  Ruff did note that they have seen Moody's take a little more negative outlook on government entities due to some pension problems in other cities.  The sale of the bond will be in two weeks and will close the early part of May. 

On another matter, Hill indicated the city will be eligible for federal funding for Oregon Avenue.  However, the funds wouldn’t be available until 2017 but the city could issue a temporary short term bond and go ahead with the project in 2014.  Ruff explained that the state has a specific law that allows for temporary bonds. They are for a term of 3 years and can be prepaid.   The interest costs are small, usually about 1%. 

Hill stated this is going to be a benefit to have this federal money out there.  There will be a feasibility study done on Oregon Avenue in May.  The city will want to make sure the storm sewer system is sized right.  Hill noted this is a great opportunity to reduce some costs. 

Resolution Accepting and Approving the 2012 Annual Financial Statements for the City:

Derick Flanagan from Eide Bailly was present at the meeting.  Flanagan thanked Finance Director Raasch and her staff for the smooth transition and keeping things going in the turnover of Finance Directors.  Flanagan reviewed the executive summary with the council.  The city received a clean audit opinion, which is what the city wants and has traditionally received. 

Council member Miller moved, seconded by Storck, to adopt Resolution #3150-14-13, Resolution Accepting and Approving the 2012 Annual Financial Statements for the City.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Resolution Authorizing Fund Transfers:  Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Wohlers to adopt Resolution #3151-4-13, Resolution Authorizing Fund Transfers.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

First Reading of Ordinance No. 94, An Ordinance Relating to Criminal History Background Checks:  Hill explained that in order for law enforcement to do background checks using the criminal history system (the computer database) there has to be a local law that allows them to do it.  The city conducts background checks for employment and liquor licenses. 

Council member Storck moved, seconded by Miller, to accept this as the first reading of Ordinance No. 94 and set the second reading and public hearing for 5:20 p.m. on April 23rd.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Resolution Entering Into a Contract for Assessing Services:  Hill stated the city contracts with the county for assessing services and Don Gieselman does the work for them.  This system works out very well for the city and Gieselman does a very good job.  Hill noted Gieselman wanted to retire but this contract keeps him around for a couple more years.  

Council member Miller moved, seconded by Wohlers to adopt Resolution #3152-4-13, Resolution Entering Into a Contract for Assessing Services.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

CITY MANAGER'S REPORTS & RECOMMENDATIONSCity Manager Report:  This was informational for the council.

NEW BUSINESSSchedule Meeting at High School:  Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Miller, to schedule the May 14th council meeting for 9:00 a.m. at the high school.  Motion carried. 

Council member Miller moved, seconded by Wohlers, to schedule a worksession after the council meeting to take a tour of city facilities.  The bus will leave from City Hall. 

OLD BUSINESS:  None

INFORMATIONAL ITEMS:  None

ADJOURNMENT:  There being no further business, Mayor Giese adjourned the meeting at 6:54 p.m.

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