– MORRIS CITY COUNCIL REGULAR
JUNE 9, 2015
The regular meeting of the
Morris City Council was called to order at 5:15 p.m. this 9th day of
June, 2015, by Mayor Giese in the Council Chambers of the Morris Senior Citizens/Community
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, Storck and Mayor
Giese. Also present was City Manager Hill, Finance Director Raasch and
Police Chief Tiegs. City Engineer Fier arrived at 5:25 p.m.
ADDITION TO AGENDA: Mayor Giese added two temporary on sale
liquor licenses for the American Legion to the agenda.
CITIZEN'S COMMENTS: None
PUBLIC HEARINGS: None
READING AND APPROVAL OF
MINUTES: 5/26/15 Regular
Meeting Minutes: Council member Storck moved, seconded by Council
member Miller, to approve the 5/26/15 regular meeting minutes. Motion
Version Minutes: Council
member Solvie moved, seconded by Wohlers, to approve the 5/26/15 condensed
version minutes. Motion carried.
CONSENT AGENDA: Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council
member Miller, to approve the consent agenda which included the following
of City Bills
On Sale Liquor License - Eagles
PETITIONS, REQUESTS AND
Underwriting Proposal – Pioneer Public Television: This request
is from the Tourism Board to use $3,050 of tourism funds to underwrite
programming at Pioneer Public television. Council member Wohlers stated
this is a great marketing tool that will reach people to show all of the
aspects Morris offers from hunting to the arts. Hill noted this is the first
step into that realm of advertising and he has advocated for this in the
past. Hill pointed out there is $50,000 in tourism funds to be used for promotion
and marketing and there will be more with the new hotel.
Miller asked for
clarification as to how much was being asked for and it was confirmed it was $3,050.
Council member Miller
moved, seconded by Wohlers, to spend $3,050 for the Pioneer Public TV proposal
for advertising. Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in
favor, motion carried.
Temporary On Sale Liquor License:
Council member Storck moved, seconded by Solvie, to approve the temporary on
sale liquor license applications from the American Legion for an event at the
Fire Hall on July 12th and at Chizek Ballfield on July 31st
/August 1st and 2nd. Upon a roll call vote taken
and all present voting in favor and Mayor Giese abstaining as an officer of the
Legion, motion carried.
ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS: Resolution Accepting Insurance Renewal
Proposal: Tom Quam of Bremer Insurance was present at the meeting to
discuss the city's insurance renewal.
The city's insurance
coverage is through the League of Minnesota Cities Insurance Trust. Quam
stated the work comp premium went down considerably mainly, due to the
modification decrease from .91 to .65. The total expiring insurance
premium was $237,703 and a renewal premium of $211,470. The city's LMCIT
dividend was $14,942 for the city's property and liability package
was had on changing the work comp deductible from $2,500 to a $0 deductible.
The experience mod reduced the work comp premium by $34,073. With a $0
deductible the renewal premium would be $57,742.
Mayor Giese moved,
seconded by Council member Miller to reduce the deductible to $0 on the
workers' compensation policy.
Council member Wohlers
moved, seconded by Solvie, to adopt Resolution #3313-6-15, Resolution Accepting
Insurance Renewal Proposal. Upon a roll call vote taken and all present
voting in favor, motion carried.
Resolution Approving a
Development Agreement with LP Properties: Hill explained that this is the TIF portion for the old
elementary property. This is a housing project and does not need a public
hearing. The TIF district has been set up for 25 years and the timeline
starts when the first project starts. Hill noted 2017 will be the first
tax year. If there are any follow on projects the end date will be the
same. Tax increment financing doesn't pay for everything, it is only for
those items that are allowed and nothing is paid for until the city starts receiving
taxes. Hill stated if this is approved tonight the project will probably
start July 1st . A note would be issued as the
city's guarantee that it will reimburse for costs and interest. The city
retains 10% annually for administration and negotiated an additional 10% to go
to debt service to help pay the demolition costs. Hill pointed out they
are talking about employing 30 people in this facility.
Miller clarified that no
money is coming out of the city coffers for this project.
Council member Storck
moved, seconded by Council member Miller, to adopt Resolution #3314-6-15,
Resolution Approving a Development Agreement with LP Properties. Upon a
roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.
the Transfer of Public Housing to the Stevens County HRA: Melanie Fohl of the Morris Housing &
Redevelopment Authority was present at the meeting to talk about a merger of
the Morris HRA and the Stevens County HRA. Jody DeCamp of the Stevens
County HRA was also present.
Fohl stated the Morris HRA
was successful in obtaining $898,000 in forgivable loans from the state bonding
money, plus other funding, to amount to over a $1 million to replace the
plumbing at Grandview. They will use $20,000 of reserves to finish the
Fohl explained that in HUD
terms this is called a full transfer of the programs and property from the
Morris HRA to Stevens County HRA. Fohl stated both she and DeCamp have worked
in their positions for more than 20 years. The agencies are strong, there
are no turf issues and they are both getting closer to retirement age so want
to make sure their agencies are prepared for that transition. They are both
classified as high performers in the grading system for housing
authorities. The transition will allow them to be much more efficient,
reduce duplicated training and have a better use of staff and expertise.
Fohl noted one of the
things they're working towards is doing a housing study. This makes them
more stable for the future with regard to funding. Fohl added that being
a larger agency and doing more of the HUD programs from one place puts them in
a good position for the future. Fohl pointed out City Attorney Jordan has
looked over a shared services agreement for the organizations.
Fohl stated the primary
office would be at the courthouse but they will always maintain staff at Grandview
because it is important to have staff available to those tenants. Fohl indicated
they also want to continue to do the rental licensing program for the city.
DeCamp added they would like to offer it to the other county communities if
DeCamp stated she has been
to council meetings in the past for work with rental rehab monies and
encouraged cities to come to them if they have an identified housing need.
The housing study will help them identify potential projects for the
Fohl explained that they
are required to choose a date for the merger but they need to spend the $898,000
before they can close everything out so they are looking at July 1, 2016.
Fohl indicated in order to move forward they need to have the council approve
the resolution approving the transfer.
Mayor Giese moved,
seconded by Council member Wohlers, to adopt Resolution #3315-6-15, Resolution
Authorizing the Transfer of Public Housing to the Stevens County HRA.
Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.
the Submission of a $7 Million Capital Budget Request to the State of MN: Hill stated the city decided to throw their
hat in the ring to try and get some money out of the bonding bill. Hill
stated he has contacted both representatives and received an email from one of
the DFL staffers that said they have a brand new budget request computerized
system. Hill stated Friday is the deadline and we are requesting $7
the Submission of a $7 Million Capital Budget Request to the State of MN: Hill explained in the request it was
conveyed that this is not just a water plant; it's also an environmental issue
and state mandates are causing the city to do this. In addition, the ethanol
plant under extreme pressure plus the City of Alberta is on the city's system.
Council member Miller
moved, seconded by Storck, to adopt Resolution #3316-6-15, Resolution
Authorizing the Submission of a $7 Million Capital Budget Request to the State
of MN. Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor,
Resolution Approving a
Use Agreement for the DENCO II Project:
Hill explained that the city now has the grant contract for the second DEED
grant for DENCO II. The grant contract requires that the city enter into
a Use Agreement with DENCO II. Hill noted the city will own the equipment
but it will be in their plant. The agreement runs for the expected life
of the equipment which is 12.5 years. After that the equipment will
belong to DENCO II.
Council member Solvie
moved, seconded by Wohlers, to adopt Resolution #3317-6-15, Resolution
Approving a Use Agreement for the DENCO II Project. Upon a roll call vote
taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.
Resolution Approving a
Memorandum of Understanding with AFSCME Union 2022: Hill stated during union negotiations an
issue came up with regards to pay for liquor store clerks as they are on the lowest
level of the pay scale. Hill added that the liquor store also has a clerk
that has 30 years of experience and they would like to move this person to the
top step. Hill pointed out minimum wage is going up and it's harder to
find someone that wants to work in this business. Hill indicated the city
needs competent people because we don't want to lose our liquor license. Hill
asked that the pay scale be adjusted by $1 an hour. This would not
increase taxes because the liquor store makes money.
was held on whether or not the increase in pay was justified. It was felt
that management needed to be held accountable for past failed compliance checks
but that this was a monetary issue and that is a separate disciplinary
Wohlers questioned moving Nancy
Peterson to the top of the pay scale and suggested moving her up two or three
steps. Wohlers asked if she could be using her expertise in other areas
besides clerking. Giese stated his opinion is that the council is
not the negotiators. Hill recommended the council approve this.
Council member Storck
moved, seconded by Miller, to adopt Resolution #3318-6-15, Resolution Approving
a Memorandum of Understanding with AFSCME Union 2022. Upon a roll call
vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.
CITY MANAGER'S REPORTS
& RECOMMENDATIONS: City
Manager Newsletter: This was informational for the council.
Hill pointed out there will be a full scale disaster drill next year. It
is going to be in June and everyone will participate.
NEW BUSINESS: None
OLD BUSINESS: None
INFORMATIONAL ITEMS: None
ADJOURNMENT: There being no further business, Mayor
Giese adjourned the meeting at 6:53 p.m.