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MINUTES –  MORRIS CITY COUNCIL REGULAR MEETING   –   APRIL 8, 2014

The regular meeting of the Morris City Council was called to order at 8:34 a.m. this 8th day of April, 2014, by Mayor Giese in the auditorium at the Morris Area High School. 

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, Public Works Director Dittbenner, Fleet Manager Searle and City Attorney Jordan.

CITIZENíS COMMENTSMichael Haynes, SCEIC, Employment Data Update:  Haynes, Executive Director of the SCEIC, was present at the meeting and reviewed the jobs and wages report for Stevens County.  Haynes also showed a map of the United States which showed the Gini Index numbers by county.  According to this report Stevens County is an extremely wealthy county.  The unemployment rate in Stevens County is at 4%, with the national average between 7-9%. 

The MN Department of Employment and Economic Development has identified Stevens County as a regional center for jobs in manufacturing, finance, business services, education and health services.

Haynes explained the population projections indicate Stevens County will be faced with a dramatic population loss of up to 30% over the next 46 years.  A big threat to this is the Bakken Oil Fields in North Dakota.  Haynes encouraged kids to return to the area after college.    

PUBLIC HEARINGS:  None

READING AND APPROVAL OF MINUTES3/25/14 Regular Meeting Minutes:  Council member Miller moved, seconded by Storck, to approve the 3/25/14 regular meeting minutes.  Motion carried.

3/25/14 Condensed Version Minutes:  Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Wohlers, to approve the 3/25/14 condensed version minutes.  Motion carried.

4/1/14 Board of Review:  Council member Storck moved, seconded by Miller, to approve the 4/1/14 Board of Review minutes.  Motion carried.

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

         A.      Audit of City Bills

         B.      March Transit Report

         C.      Application for Exempt Permit - SCMC

         D.      Raffle Report – Post Prom

Motion carried.

PETITIONS, REQUESTS AND COMMUNICATIONSMotion to Authorize DNR Fire Grant:  Council member Wohlers moved, seconded by Miller, to authorize applying for a DNR Fire Grant to be used for bunker gear.  Motion carried.

Motion to Approve Sale of 07 Chevy Impala:  Council member Storck moved, seconded by Miller, to approve the sale of the 2007 Chevy Impala.  Motion carried.

ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONSResolution Approving an Animal Shelter Services Agreement with the Stevens Community Humane Society:  Hill recommended the council approve this with minor changes to the agreement dealing with immunizations and duration of how long dogs are kept.  Hill encouraged all dog owners to get their dogs licensed.  The annual fee is only $5.00 per dog. 

Council member Miller, seconded by Wohlers to adopt Resolution #3220-4-14, Resolution Approving an Animal Shelter Services Agreement with the Stevens Community Humane Society.  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. 

Hill stated there have been some meetings about selling water and one nearby community has approached the city.  DENCO II also has major water issues.  City staff will be sitting down with Bolton & Menk to discuss these things as the city looks towards building a new water treatment plant.  Water conservation rates will also be discussed.  Hill noted itís possible that residents could be penalized for over using the water system.    

Stevens County Subsurface Sewage Treatment System (SSTS) Ordinance:  Hill noted that the city doesnít have a separate ordinance for this but the county will govern it. 

Alley Restrictions:  Public Works Director Dittbenner stated the heavy garbage trucks are hard on the alleys when the frost is coming out of the ground.  City staff is looking into alley restrictions.  Hill doesnít believe this has ever been done in Morris.  Dittbenner indicated he has talked with Engebretsonís and they are willing to give it a try.  This is something that would probably be started next year.    

NEW BUSINESSProclamation in Observance of Letter Carriers' Food Drive Day:  Mayor Giese proclaimed Saturday, May 10th as Letter Carriers' Food Drive Day in the City of Morris. 

Mayor's Day of Recognition for National Service:  Mayor Giese had proclaimed April 1st as National Service Recognition Day.

OLD BUSINESS:  None

INFORMATIONAL ITEMS:  None

ADJOURNMENT:  There being no further business, Mayor Giese adjourned the meeting at 9:43 a.m.

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