November Agenda Meeting Minutes
November 7, 2016
The meeting was called to order by Mayor John Werner at 6:00 p.m. Present for the meeting; Mayor John Werner; Councilors John Goman, Greg Andrews, Suzanne Herstad, and Bob Quade; Treasurer Holly Herstad; Clerk Joan Jauss; Scott Twining Fire Chief, Mark Niemi Assistant Fire Chief, and John Klaers, City Planner from Klaers and Associates.
A motion was made by Suzanne to approve the October 3, 2016 agenda meeting minutes with a second by Greg Andrews. All vote in favor. Motion carried.
Business from the floor:
Joan shared a copy of the cell tower inspection she received from Four Star Inspection. Joan informed the Council that Four Star Inspection found six anchor bolts were loose so they tightened the bolts. It was recommended to have the tower inspected again in a year to check the bolts. Four Star also noted that the safety cable was rubbing on a coax cable and would need to moved. Joan will work with the cell carrier to get this resolved and have it re-inspected once fixed.
Fire Truck Investment account: Joan went over the fire truck investment account showing the balance, when the CDs will mature, and how much is in cash and how much is in CD’s.
HGACBuy/Texas Cooperative Purchase Venture (CPV): Suzanne inquired as to the purpose of HGACBuy and Texas CPV and Mark stated the Texas CPV is a cooperative that allows all fire truck manufactures who are part of the purchasing venture to submit specifications for different fire trucks at best value. Joan stated Mike Couri, City Attorney, reviewed using the Texas CPV and noted we can use Texas CPV to fulfill the requirement for competitive bidding for purchasing a new fire truck. The application needs to be filled out to join the Texas CPV.
Small Grants: Joan informed the Council the Agstar Grant was used to purchase radios. Holly wanted to know what items had been purchased with the other two grants they have received. Mark said they have not made any purchases yet. Joan asked on the small grants the fire department receives, if Suzanne should sign the award grant along with a fire department member, since she is the person applying for the grants. Council agreed that Suzanne should sign all awarded grants going forward. It was also agreed thank you notes should be sent to the grant companies letting them know what was purchased.
AFG equipment and truck grant: Suzanne informed the Council both AFG equipment and truck grants have been submitted, copies of the narratives were given to Councilors.
Fire Truck: Mark shared a binder of information on the fire truck the fire department is looking to purchase and John W. asked Mark to go over the specifications. Mark stated they are looking at a Pierce truck, which is in the mid-range for pricing and noted Pierce is a multipurpose response vehicle. Mark stated they received a quote for $480,682 and the extras they want would be an additional $11,000. The current pricing is good until January 31, 2017, after that there will be approximately a 3% increase. Discussion was held on how to pay for the new truck. Mark recommended a lease to purchase agreement for three, five or ten years. Joan questioned using a lease versus a bond. Suzanne asked why we are not looking at used trucks instead of a new truck and she is concerned about future equipment needs and how we are going to pay for those. Mark stated rural fire departments have specific needs in a fire truck, like a large tank and a rear intake valve, and with a used truck there is no warranty. He has tried to find a used truck with these specifications and is unable to, they are also concerned about the engine reliability and no warranty. John W. said the money the fire department is spending for a fire truck was raised by fundraisers years ago, it is not money from the tax payers. John W. stated, the City Attorney said the funds need to be used to purchase new equipment, that is why the judge broke the trust. Greg mentioned that a new fire truck being purchased with these funds is a great deal for the tax payers and for the fire department. Discussion was held on bonding or lease to purchase. Mark said that the extra equipment needed to outfit the truck is about $11,000 and an equipment grant was submitted for this purpose. Greg asked Mark what he recommends, waiting for grant award or purchasing now. Mark said he recommends purchasing now, if we were awarded a grant we could still use it to purchase a tanker truck. Greg made a motion to purchase a new fire truck now for $481,000 with a $250,000 down payment pending a financial review of a bond vs a lease with a second by Bob. John W. stated he would like to meet with the sales person to discuss the specifications of the truck being purchased. Mark said there is a specification sheet in the three-ring binder but will ask for one with line item costs. All voted in favor. Motion passed.
Storm bonding: Joan informed the Council, that George Eilertson from Northland Securities and Chris Virta, with Fryberger, Buchanan, Smith and Fredrick will be at the next council meeting to discuss bonding for the July storm costs.
Fund transfer: Fund transfer: Holly stated she is requesting council to approve a transfer of $100,000 from West Calvary Investment to the General Checking account which is a normal transfer we do in December every year to cover the West Calvary Bond payment, so she would like to do it earlier this year. Joan stated she would like to amend the request because; #1 at the October 24th Council meeting the council had approved transferring $100,000 from the General Investment account to the General Checking account and that transfer did not occur due to the fact the General Investment account does not have $100,000 cash to transfer; and #2 Joan is requesting we transfer $200,000 from West Calvary Investment to the General Checking account to include the $100,000 transfer approved at the October 24th meeting and an additional $100,000 to cover storm costs and other expenses until we get our tax apportionment in early December. Holly stated the motion made at the October 24th can stand as the General Investment account does have a $100,000 CD and she checked with Miranda, our accountant, and she stated you can trade a CD from one investment account, with cash from a different investment account and Holly said our Fund Policy allows her and Joan to make the investment transfers without the council seeing them manage the investments. Joan stated she has never done that. John W. asked why we are transferring money from one account to transfer money from another account to transfer money, why can’t we just transfer enough money from one account to cover the costs. Holly stated she would rather keep all the money coming from the General fund instead of the General and West Calvary Funds as she understands we should get the proceeds from the Storm Bond by the end of December. John G. asked how much money do we actually need to transfer to cover the extra costs from the storm damage. Joan stated we need $200,000 to pay our bills until we receive our apportionment in December and the General Investment account does not have $200,000 in it. Holly stated the first $100,000 will come from the General Investment Account but the confusion is, she needs to flip a CD from the General Investment Account with another investment account to get the cash. Holly stated now she is asking for an additional $100,000 transfer to come from the West Calvary Investment fund to the General Checking account. Joan stated she is recommending we take $200,000 from the West Calvary Investment fund to cover our expenses until we receive our apportionment in December. Joan stated when we receive the funds from the Storm Bond, then we will need to refund the General Investment Account and the West Calvary Investment Account. Joan stated she emailed Mary, our other accountant, because Holly’s concern is we can’t use the West Calvary Investment fund for anything other than the West Calvary Bond payments, but Mary said we can use the funds because the storm costs are from an emergency, if we replace them by the end of the year. Joan stated we have $238,000 in cash right now in the West Calvary Investment Account that is available for transfer. John G. made a motion to move $200,000 from West Calvary Investments to General Checking to help cover storm costs with a second by Suzanne. All vote in favor. Motion passed. Holly stated we need to rescind the motion Greg made at the October 24 meeting as the funds were never transferred. John G. stated the funds were not available to be transferred. Holly stated Joan would not approve the transfer. Suzanne stated that was because the transfer was not the same as the Council had approved at the October meeting. Greg made a motion to rescind his motion from the October 24, 2016 Council meeting to transfer $100,000 from General Investments to General Checking with a second by John G. All vote in favor. Motion passed.
Fair housing transfer: Joan requested council approval to transfer $45,974.51 from the Fair Housing Checking Account to Utilities Checking Account to reimburse for the completed repairs to Lift Station 1 and Lift Station 2. Greg stated, it has always been the intent to use these funds for this purpose. A motion was made by Greg to transfer $45,974.51 with a second by John G. All vote in favor. Motion passed.
Account Numbers: Holly requested Council approval to add an account number for the receipt of the CDBG funds. Holly stated she is working on getting the City’s account numbers to match the Minnesota Financial Reporting Standards. John W. stated this is not a Council matter and should be worked out with the HR Councilors. John G. and Suzanne stated they will investigate and get back to Holly and Joan with their decision on the account number to use.
2017 Group Health Insurance: Suzanne, John G., Holly, and Joan met with Jeremy from Reliable Insurance Agency to review different health plans. Suzanne and John G. recommended staying with the same health plan as last year. John G. said he does not support making any changes to the group health plan for 2017. Suzanne reviewed other plans and found there was not much of a savings if we were to switch. Council approved the HR Councilors recommendation to continue with the current health plan.
Lobbyist: John W. was contacted by Gary Cerkvenik asking him if the City is going to utilize his services as a lobbyist for 2017. A motion was made by John G. to support the Mayors recommendation to hire Gary Cerkvenik as lobbyist for the City for a cost of $3,000 with a second by Suzanne. All voted in favor. Motion passed.
Water tower painting inspection agreement: Joan handed out a copy of the agreement with MSA Professional Services for council to review for the consent agenda at the next council meeting.
Board of Canvas: Joan informed the Council we need to schedule the Board of Canvas meeting, she recommended 15 minutes before the November 14 council meeting at 5:45. Council agreed.
Public hearing budget/levy date change: Joan reiterated to Council the public hearing for the 2017 budget/levy has been changed from December 8 to December 1, 2016.
Minnesota Association of Small Cities: Joan asked if Council would like to become a member. This was postponed from the October agenda meeting. The cost would be about $2,000. Discussion was held and decided there was no benefit, at this time, to become a member.
December 26th council meeting: Joan asked Council if they want to hold the second Council meeting in December, and if so, we need to change the date from December 26th as we are closed that day. Council agreed to cancel the second council meeting in December due to the holidays.
Having nothing further to discuss, a motion to adjourn was made by John G. with a second by Bob. All vote in favor. Motion carried.