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MINUTES    –    MORRIS CITY COUNCIL REGULAR MEETING    –     JUNE 23, 2015

The regular meeting of the Morris City Council was called to order at 5:15 p.m. this 23rd day of June, 2015, by Mayor Giese in the Council Chambers of the Morris Senior Citizens/Community Center.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE:  The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

ADDITION TO AGENDA:  Mayor Giese added an Application for Exempt Permit from Pheasants Forever to the agenda.

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, Police Chief Tiegs and Fire Chief Dybdal.

CITIZEN'S COMMENTSPresentation of Community Partnership Grant Award from Centerpoint Energy:  Scott Hangge of Centerpoint Energy presented a check to the City of Morris for $2,500.  This is a community partnership grant to be used to purchase an 18” ventilator fan and two ladder harnesses for the Fire Department. 

PUBLIC HEARINGS:  None 

READING AND APPROVAL OF MINUTES:  6/9/15 Regular Meeting Minutes:  Council member    Storck moved, seconded by Council member Miller, to approve the 6/9/15 regular meeting minutes.  Motion carried.

6/9/15 Condensed Minutes:  Council member Solvie moved, seconded by Council member Wohlers, to approve the 6/9/15 condensed version minutes.  Motion carried.

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

         A.      Audit of City Bills

         B.      Pay Estimate #1 – Mudpumpers Mudjacking

         C.      5/20/15 Tourism Board Minutes

         D.      Revenue & Expenditure Report

         E.       Community Ed Monthly Board Report

         F.       Application for Exempt Permit – Assumption Church

         G.      Application for Exempt Permit – Pheasants Forever

Motion carried.

PETITIONS, REQUESTS AND COMMUNICATIONSGambling Report – American Legion:  Council member Miller moved, seconded by Storck, to accept the gambling report from the American Legion.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor and Mayor Giese abstaining as an officer of the Legion, motion carried.

Transfer of Liquor License from Bhupen Ray to B & H Hospitality:  City Manager Hill stated he did not have a problem with the transfer but suggested it be approved contingent upon the following four items:

1)a certificate for liability insurance

2)proof of workers compensation insurance

3)a background check by the Chief of Police on the 3 partners

4)documentation showing they actually bought the business

Hill indicated he talked with Maggie Buss and they are hoping to take over on July 6th or 7th and are looking for approval because there is not another city council meeting before that time. 

Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Miller, to approve the transfer of the liquor license from Bhupen Ray to B & H Hospitality contingent upon the four items listed above.  Motion carried.

ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONSResolution Authorizing the Preparation of the Part 2 Application for the MS4 Storm Water Permit:   Hill explained the city is in the process of completing and obtaining approval of an application for the NPDES Phase II Municipality Separate Storm Sewer System permit as regulated by the MPCA.  Hill recommended the council pass a resolution authorizing preparation of part II of the application by Bolton & Menk in the amount of $24,800.   

Chuck DeWolf of Bolton & Menk was present at the meeting.  DeWolf stated this program originally only affected large cities but a number of years ago the program expanded to smaller cities.  The city needs to prepare what is called a storm water management plan which will identify what the city needs to do to comply with the MS4 permit.  The requirements include things like public education and outreach, reviewing and amending ordinances, construction site control and identification of discharges and spills.    

DeWolf stated the process is to work with city staff on how the city wants to move forward.  DeWolf stated history indicates that this does take time to put together and basically the city has until the end of next summer but it would be better not to have to rush.  DeWolf stated there is a lot of documentation that needs to be done such as site inspections after rainfalls, proper plan reviews, enforcement of ordinances, listed discharges, staff training and making sure industries are following their discharge requirements.  

Hill explained one future change may be a fine for mowing grass into the street.  When grass and leaves are washed into the storm sewer they start to decompose and cause problems.  Some other things to look at include street sweeping and cluttered properties covered with junk and where the runoff goes. 

Wohlers asked about costs associated with implementing this system.  Hill suggested creating a storm water utility. 

Mayor Giese moved, seconded by Council member Storck, to adopt Resolution #3319-6-15, Resolution Authorizing the Preparation of the Part 2 Application for the MS4 Storm Water Permit.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Resolution Authorizing an LED Lighting Project: Hill stated Eutetics Consulting LLC and Cedar Creek Energy have put together a project to re-light Morris City Hall, the library and the downtown street lights with LED lighting.   Hill noted there is no cash out from the city; all the money to pay back the lease is going to come from a reduction in the energy costs. There will be 35 new street lights in the downtown area because that is what the city owns.  Otter Tail Power owns the other 450 lights.

Council member Miller moved, seconded by Council member Wohlers, to adopt Resolution #3320-6-15, Resolution Authorizing an LED Lighting Project.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Resolution Adopting Assessment for Current Services:  Council member Wohlers moved, seconded by Solvie, to adopt Resolution #3321-6-15, Resolution Adopting Assessment for Current Services.  Upon a roll call vote taken and all present voting in favor, motion carried.

CITY MANAGER'S REPORTS & RECOMMENDATIONS2016 Budget Guidance:  Hill stated there are not a lot of big changes but there will be a levy increase for a lease payment for the new loader.  Wages and health insurance are locked in.  The city received slightly more for LGA.  Staff is talking about a $5 per billing charge for a storm water utility.  There is $5 million coming on to the tax rolls with the new hotel and a new expansion at the hospital. 

Council member Wohlers moved, seconded by Mayor Giese, to approve the budget guidance as presented.  Motion carried.

City Manager Newsletter:  Hill indicated it is time to require homeowners to start trimming shrubs and trees in their alleys because it has become a safety issue. 

With regard to mosquitos, Hill stated the city hasn't sprayed in 20 years and doesn't have the equipment for it.  Two machines would cost $10,000 and $500 to $1,000 a night to spray.  The city also doesn't have the personnel because they are already busy doing other things and can't be working at night.    

Solvie indicated some of the complaints he received were about the parks and that they are very busy at night with softball and baseball games.  Solvie stated he doesn't think spraying the whole town is in the cards but thought it was reasonable to spray the parks.  Solvie feels the city needs to do something with the state tournament coming in August.  

It was the consensus of the council that they would like to at least see something done at the parks for mosquito control. 

Discussion was held on the water line to Alberta and adding additional water for a hog farmer.  Solvie indicated he does not think the city needs to get into negotiations with individuals along the line and it should remain city to city.  Storck added that the city needs to be careful about what it's selling out of the aquifer. 

Motion to Approve Sale of 2003 Tahoe:  Council member Solvie moved, seconded by Storck, to authorize the sale of the police department's 2003 Tahoe.  Motion carried. 

NEW BUSINESS:  None

OLD BUSINESS:  Wohlers asked for an update on lighting and landscaping for the welcome to Morris signs.  Hill stated there is nothing for the lighting because there is no power supply near the signs.  The only option would be to have solar lights to provide enough lighting for one of the big signs but it isn't available at this time.  It was noted that there were no lights on the signs before.   

INFORMATIONAL ITEMS:  None

ADJOURNMENT:  There being no further business, Mayor Giese adjourned the meeting at 6:33 p.m.

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