MINUTES – MORRIS CITY COUNCIL REGULAR
MEETING – JULY 8, 2014
The regular meeting of the
Morris City Council was called to order at 5:15 p.m. this 8th day of
July, 2014, 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, Solvie, Miller
and Mayor Giese. Council member
Storck was absent. Also present was
City Manager Hill, Finance Director Raasch, Fire Chief Dybdal and Police Chief
Tiegs. City Engineer Fier arrived
at 5:25 p.m.
ADDITION TO AGENDA: Mayor
Giese added to the agenda an Application for Exempt Permit from the Humane
Society and a Resolution Requesting Designation of the SCEIC as an LGO.
CITIZENíS COMMENTS: None
PUBLIC HEARINGS: None
READING AND APPROVAL OF
MINUTES: 6/24/14 Regular Meeting Minutes: Council member Solvie moved, seconded by
Council member Wohlers, to approve the 6/24/14 regular meeting minutes. Motion carried.
Version Minutes: Council member Miller moved, seconded by
Solvie, to approve the 6/24/14 condensed version minutes. Motion carried.
CONSENT AGENDA: Mayor
Giese moved, seconded by Council member Miller, to approve the consent agenda
which included the following items:
A. Audit of City
B. Pay Estimate #8
– West 9th, 10th and 11th Streets
C. June Transit
D. Application to
Conduct Excluded Bingo – Morris Lions
for Exempt Permit – Humane Society
PETITIONS, REQUESTS AND
COMMUNICATIONS: Motion to Authorize Selling Old
Scoreboard and Batting Cage: Council member Wohlers
moved, seconded by Mayor Giese, to authorize the sale of the old scoreboard and
batting cage on the MN bid site.
RESOLUTIONS: Resolution Appointing Judges for the
August 12, 2014 State Primary Election: Council member Miller moved, seconded by
Solvie, to adopt Resolution #3235-7-14, Resolution Appointing Judges for the
August 12, 2014 State Primary Election.
Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion
Rental Housing Licenses for Non-Compliance: Melanie Fohl was present
at the meeting and stated one of these properties is being revoked for
non-payment and the other is for non-payment as well as non-compliance
Fohl suggested possibly suspending
the licenses, rather than revoking them.
The time limit for these issues has exceeded six months. Fohl stated past history has dictated
that once these issues are made public people usually deal with them. Miller indicated perhaps getting the
license revoked is what needs to happen to get it taken care of. Miller stated he would hate to see the
city take the teeth out of this.
Fohl added there is
another fine that's added on with the suspension and the property is
re-inspected to make sure it is in compliance. Fohl stated she would probably only give
them 30 days to get it taken care of.
It was the consensus of
the council that a suspension would be okay, instead of a revocation. Miller reiterated that he doesnít want
to see the city lose control but if Fohl is willing to take care of it he is
comfortable with it.
Mayor Giese moved,
seconded by Council member Wohlers, to adopt Resolution #3236-7-14, Resolution Suspending
Rental Housing Licenses for Non-Compliance. Upon a roll call vote taken and all
present voting in favor, motion carried.
a Rate Study of the Utility System by Bolton and Menk, Inc.: Hill stated
one reason for this study is that there is a requirement for the City to have a
conservation rate for water utilities in place by 2015. Hill noted the biggest change will be for the people who water their lawns. The other part of this study is that the
city wants to make sure the rates cover the cost of the utility system. Hill added this study would also take a
look at the potential rates for users that want to come on to the cityís
system. The study will take 6-8
weeks to complete. Hill indicated
he would make a recommendation to the council as part of the budget process
based on the results of the study.
Miller asked about existing
wells and septic systems. Hill stated
they would be grandfathered in but eventually the city will have to help them
figure out a solution. Hill pointed
out there are some areas of town that have very small
drain fields. Hill explained that at
the next meeting he would be bringing the council a draft agreement with a
septic tank company to allow them to dump into the cityís sewer ponds. Hill has talked with the engineers and there
will be perimeters.
Council member Miller moved, seconded by Wohlers, to adopt Resolution #3237-7-14,
Resolution Authorizing a Rate Study of the Utility System by Bolton & Menk,
Inc. Upon a roll call vote taken
and all present voting in favor, motion carried.
New Four Year Agreement for City Attorney Services: Hill
stated this arrangement works well for the city and believes itís a good price
Police Chief Tiegs stated
it is nice not to have to worry about conflict of interest because there is no
private work involved, just county and city work. Hill noted that they have asked for some
additional money for training that is geared towards city issues.
Council member Solvie
asked how it is determined whether or not it is county
or city work. Tiegs explained that
if itís a misdemeanor or petty misdemeanor itís city and if itís a gross
misdemeanor or felony charge it's county.
Council member Solvie moved, seconded by Miller, to adopt Resolution #3238-7-14,
Resolution Approving New Four Year Agreement for City Attorney Services. Upon a roll call vote taken and all
present voting in favor, motion carried.
Resolution by City
Requesting Designation of the SCEIC as a Local Development Organization: Hill
explained that the city already took action on this but the state made some changes
as to what they wanted to see in their document.
Mayor Giese moved,
seconded by Council member Solvie, to adopt Resolution #3239-7-14, Resolution
by City Requesting Designation of the SCEIC as a Local Development
Organization. Upon a roll call vote
taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.
CITY MANAGER'S REPORTS
& RECOMMENDATIONS: City Manager Report: Hill explained that the next reclaim of
streets is going to be the two blocks by the courthouse and First
Lutheran. Also, the block in front
of the council chambers and the post office will be done and the frontage road
by DJN Electric to the car wash. Wohlers
asked how much more it would cost to do in front of the bowling alley. City Engineer Fier stated he would have
to do some measuring. Fier pointed
out that reclaims are just a temporary deal and nothing is done with the water
and sewer infrastructure.
The Hwy 28 & 9 project
was discussed. Hill stated this is
potentially a $10 million dollar project and the property developers have some
big decisions to make. The city
could look at tax abatement but that would be limited to the taxes the city
levies. The county and school
district would need to abate their taxes themselves.
Appeals – Settlements – Nichols and Sax: Hill stated
ultimately the city learned a lot during this appeals process. Hill indicated he doesnít think the city
will see a lot of people filing appeals for assessments because not a lot of
people have the time or the inclination to fight these assessments.
Hill stated Kelly and
Cindy Nichols had an assessment amount of $12,815 and Michael Sax appealed an
assessment of $12,853. The city
settled on the Nichols assessment for $6,000 and with Sax for $5,178 after an
appraiser determined the special benefit for the Nicholsí property was $8,000
and the special benefit to the Sax property was $7,000.
Hill indicated there is a
tremendous amount of time and resources that goes into these appeals. Hill noted the city will
be looking at taking sidewalks out of special assessment projects, except for Oregon
Avenue because there is federal money available. Also, how the city deals with empty lots
will be looked at. Hill stated in
the scope of everything the city is doing with improvements this was a minor
NEW BUSINESS: None
OLD BUSINESS: None
being no further business, Mayor Giese adjourned the meeting at 6:10 p.m.