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MINUTES   –   MORRIS CITY COUNCIL REGULAR MEETING  –  JULY 22, 2014

The regular meeting of the Morris City Council was called to order at 5:15 p.m. this 22nd 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, Miller and Mayor Giese.  Council members Solvie and Storck were absent.  Also present was City Manager Hill, Finance Director Raasch, Police Chief Tiegs, Public Works Director Dittbenner, Fleet Manager Searle, City Engineer Fier and City Attorney Jordan. 

ADDITIONS TO AGENDA:  Mayor Giese added to the agenda a donation to the Fire Department and the Eagles Ballfield Drainage issue.

CITIZEN’S COMMENTSElizabeth Wefel – Coalition of Greater MN Cities:  Wefel was present at the meeting to present her annual report from the coalition as she is a lobbyist with the firm of Flaherty & Hood.  The Coalition’s membership is up to 85 cities.  Their main focus is LGA but they also work on environmental, annexation and transportation issues depending on what's going on in the legislature.  The topics of major focus in the legislature were medical marijuana, minimum wage and bullying.  Wefel reviewed the outcome of the session which included an additional $7.8M in funding for LGA for 2015, $20M for new broadband infrastructure and $31.5M in trunk highway fund revenues.  The city of Morris received $2,263,770 in LGA for 2014 and will receive an additional $11,714 in 2015 as a result of the increase in the LGA appropriation.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:  None

READING AND APPROVAL OF MINUTES7/8/14 Regular Meeting Minutes:  Council member Miller moved, seconded by Wohlers, to approve the 7/18/14 regular meeting minutes.  Motion carried.

7/8/14 Condensed Version Minutes:  Council member Wohlers moved, seconded by Mayor Giese, to approve the 7/8/14 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 Bills

         B.      Partial Pay Estimate #3 – F & S Concrete

         C.      Temporary On Sale Liquor License – American Legion

         D.      Revenue & Expenditure Report

Motion carried.

PETITIONS, REQUESTS AND COMMUNICATIONS:  None

ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONSResolution Approving an Updated Wastewater Treatment Facility Agreement with DENCO II, LLC:  Hill stated this agreement expired in May of 2014.  This is a new renewal agreement that includes the additional requirements being placed upon the city by the MPCA which have to do with chloride and phosphorus standards. 

Council member Miller moved, seconded by Wohlers, to adopt Resolution #3240-7-14, Resolution Approving an Updated Wastewater Treatment Facility Agreement with DENCO II, LLC.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Resolution Approving a Septic System Dumping Agreement with Engebretson Septic Tank Service:  Hill explained that Troy Engebretson approached him and is interested in dumping into the city’s sanitary sewer system with his septic tank business.  New restrictions from the MPCA make it difficult for him to continue to dump on farmland.  Hill stated he talked with the city’s engineers and it is a very bad waste that he would be dumping.   Some of it would be residential waste but some may come from places like Riley Brothers.  Hill noted the recommendation is that there be limits which include a maximum of 200 loads per year, a customer charge and a dump charge.  The City of Donnelly also has individual septic systems that collect into a bigger system and Engebretson dumps that from time to time. 

Hill pointed out there are rules and regulations in the agreement as to notifying the city when he would be dumping, keeping track of where it's coming from and what happens in an emergency.  Hill stated the only thing Engebretson had an issue with was the $1.5M insurance liability requirement.  Hill noted that amount is the same as what Engebretson has in his agreement with the county and the landfill. 

Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Wohlers, to adopt Resolution #3241-7-14, Resolution Approving a Septic System Dumping Agreement with Engebretson Septic Tank Service.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Resolution Approving an Airport Land Lease with MTM Farms, LLC:  Hill recommended the city renew this land lease for another 3 years.  Hill stated MTM Farms is doing a good job and would like to see the lease continue for $102 an acre for 154 acres. Hill pointed out he is bringing it up now because farmers are making decisions as to what they're doing with land for next year as far as crops and prep work. 

Council member Miller moved, seconded by Wohlers, to adopt Resolution #3242-7-14, Resolution Approving an Airport Land Lease with MTM Farms, LLC.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Resolution Authorizing a Point Source Implementation Grant Application through the MN Public Facility Authority:  Hill stated last year the city applied for and was turned down for a grant for the water treatment facility through the wastewater fund.  Hill noted it’s time for the next grant cycle and the city would like to look at submitting a Point Source Implementation Grant to the Minnesota Public Facilities Authority.  The city will approach it from a discharge standpoint because ultimately the construction of a new facility will reduce the hardness of the water which will allow the city to meet the MPCA discharge standards. 

Council member Miller moved, seconded by Mayor Giese, to adopt Resolution #3243-7-14, Resolution Authorizing a Point Source Implementation Grant Application Through the Minnesota Public Facility Authority.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Resolution Authorizing the City to Enter Into an Audit Engagement Letter with Eide Bailly:  Council member Wohlers moved, seconded by Miller, to adopt Resolution #3244-7-14, Resolution Authorizing the City to Enter Into an Audit Engagement Letter with Eide Bailly.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

CITY MANAGER'S REPORTS & RECOMMENDATIONS:   City Manager Report:  Hill stated the railroad crossing on Park Avenue would be done on July 29th and there would be concrete inserts in all three of the tracks so it should be in good shape going forward.  The reclaim on the blocks by First Lutheran and the Courthouse is going to start next week. 

With regard to land in the Industrial Park, Hill stated the land that the city was looking at buying had a sewer issue.  Hill noted he has made an offer on an alternative piece of land. 

Planning Commission Date/Tax Abatement Process:  Hill explained with regard to the Highway 28 project there is potentially a change in the plat that was presented, some of which has to do with the pond issue.  Hill stated that if the developer makes a change then it becomes a new preliminary plat, but if the city (as the council or planning commission) tells them to do it they can makes the changes without having to start over from the beginning.  Hill stated there is a drop dead date to start working on this project and it is the middle of August.  Hill proposed that the Planning Commission have a meeting on August 5th to take a look at the new plat. 

Hill indicated he will be recommending tax abatement for the city and has also talked with the county and school about that as well.  This would allow for any potential development to get their taxes reimbursed to help pay for the project costs.  Hill stated he has talked to the project engineer from MN DOT and they are planning the Hwy 28 reconstruction past Superior where they will be putting in a center turn lane.  Hill noted if this project doesn’t move forward they will probably drop the turn lane project and not touch it again.    

Wohlers stated he feels the city needs to be involved with tax abatement if possible.  Hill pointed out the city can only decide on city taxes, the school and county have to do their own.  Hill stated he had been in contact with the chair of the county board but

there is no one up there right now that can facilitate this process.  There is also currently an interim superintendent for the school.  

Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Miller, to schedule a Planning Commission meeting for 5:15 p.m. on August 5th.  Motion carried.  Miller noted that this will not replace the regular Planning Commission meeting.

Eagles Field Drainage:  City Engineer Fier noted that the city has been working on this for 34 years.  Hill stated this area really needs to be tiled and Fier has put together a drainage plan and an estimate.  Hill recommended the city go ahead with the work for an estimate of $27,001.  Fier explained that the new scoreboard destroyed what drainage there was. 

Giese asked if this would cause any problems downstream.  Fier noted drainage may be a little slower on heavy rains but it wouldn’t change anything that doesn't naturally go that way.  Dittbenner stated it would not be adding anything, just taking the saturation out of the soil.  Wohlers expressed concern about the neighborhood where his mom lives. 

Hill indicated this would be paid for out of the capital outlay fund.  There is a contingency of $25,000.  There was $10,000 for the press box in the budget but Superior donated one so the city will see a savings of approximately $5,000 after the concrete slab has been put down.    

Hill stated he talked to Tony Reimers at Community Ed and he would be willing to move the games around in order to get this project done. 

Council member Miller moved, seconded by Mayor Giese, to approve the Eagles field drainage estimate for $27,001.  Motion carried.

NEW BUSINESS:  Council member Miller moved, seconded by Wohlers, to accept a donation of $1,000 from Cargill Cares to the Morris Fire Department.  This will go towards the purchase of a thermal imaging camera. 

OLD BUSINESS:  None

INFORMATIONAL ITEMS:  None

ADJOURNMENT:  There being no further business, Mayor Giese adjourned the meeting at 6:29 p.m.

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