2017 December Agenda minutes

December Agenda Meeting Minutes

December 4, 2017

The meeting was called to order by Mayor John Werner at 6:00 p.m.  Present for the meeting; Mayor John Werner, Councilors Greg Andrews, Suzanne Herstad, John Goman, and Bob Quade, Clerk Joan Jauss, and attached list of public.

John G. made a motion to approve the November 6, 2017 Agenda Meeting Minutes with a second by Suzanne.  All vote in favor.  Motion passed.


Resolution 17-12-32 Levy for 2018: Joan shared a copy of the final resolution setting the 2018 levy.  There is an approximate $65,000 increase.  Joan will bring to the next Council meeting for action.

Gambling permit: Joan shared a copy of the annual gambling permit for the Yeti Tour at Sunset Bar.  Joan will bring to the next Council meeting for action.

WLSSD recycle meeting: Joan shared a copy of an email from WLSSD noting they are going to have their annual recycle meeting on December 14.  Greg stated he will attend.

2018 City Fee Schedule: Joan shared a copy of the 2017 City fee schedule, she asked the Council if they wanted to make any changes for 2018.  John W. stated each line item for discussion. There was some discussion on raising the park pavilion damage deposit, it was agreed to leave the general fees the same as in 2017.  Joan is to follow up with Teresa in Zoning to see if she has any changes on planning and zoning, if so, Joan is to bring back to Council for further discussion.

West Calvary bond payment transfer: Joan asked Council to transfer $75,145 from investment to general checking to cover the cost of the bond payments in 2017. She gave Council copies of payments made and revenues received.  Suzanne made a motion to move $75,145 from investments to general checking with a second by John G.  All vote in favor.  Motion passed.

Ordinance #23 Right of Way: Joan gave the Council a copy of the updated Right of Way Ordinance for review. The changes include the small cell verbiage the City needs to address.  She will bring to the Council meeting at the end of the month for action.


Family of God Church land: Joan shared a copy of an appraisal that was done for the 1.14 acres the City is considering purchasing from the Family of God Church, the appraisal came in for $14,000. Jon Nelson at Family of God Church sent an email, which Joan shared with Council, asking if the City was prepared to make payment for the property.  John W. stated if the City purchases the property they would like to combine all the parcels; fire department, public works and new one into one parcel.  It was agreed to table until the January Council.  Joan is to send a letter to Jon Nelson at Family of God Church noting it is the City of Rice Lake’s intent to purchase the land.

Local Government Aid (LGA): John W. stated in 2018, the City is scheduled to receive $429,943 in LGA.  There has been some discussion on how to spend these funds previously. John asked that the Council consider changing some of the preliminary thoughts.  He would like to add to the list a new hip roof for approximately $75,000 – $100,000 and make a greater reduction to debt.  We would hold off on a new lawnmower, truck, gravel, and fire equipment contribution.  Joan shared an excel spreadsheet with the new options.  John W. has requested a roof architect come and look at installing a hip roof on City Hall as the current roof is approximately 25 years old and is leaking.  Once the roof architect has submitted some options, he will come talk with the Council to devise a plan to address the issue.  Suzanne asked about the Sheriff’s agreement, John W. noted the agreement is still in discussion.  John W. stated the City’s and St. Louis County’s attorneys are still talking with each other on the Sheriff’s agreement.  Suzanne asked if the fire equipment plan could be adjusted back up to $25,000, Council agreed to reinstate.  It was agreed to table the matter until the roof architect can come and discuss with Council.

Tower rent: The Council had asked at a previous meeting what the City received monthly in tower rent.  Joan shared we get $6,067 every month.

AT&T amendment: Joan shared Mike Couri, City Attorney, helped Joan modify the draft AT&T amendment to include a $1,000 rent increase in the base rent for moving the antenna up to 127’ on the Arnold Road tower.  AT&T has requested to be able to move the antennas prior to the lease amendment being completed.  Council agreed they would allow if they will put in writing they agree with the rent increase.  Joan will follow up with AT&T.

Set aside money: Joan asked Council if they would like to set aside funds for future improvements to City Hall, Public Works, and the S. Fire Hall buildings.  In the past $5,000 was set aside for the Public Works Building, $10,000 for the Fire Hall, and $5,000 for City Hall.  John W. shared that he had received an estimate for $14,900 to convert the lighting to LED, the truck bays need to be painted, and a new exhaust system needs to be installed at the South Fire Hall.  John G. made a motion to set aside $5,000 for the Public Works Building, $10,000 for the S. Fire Hall, and $5,000 for City Hall with a second by Greg.  All vote in favor.  Motion passed.

New fire truck: Joan shared an email from Chief Niemi stating Pierce is working on fixing the punch list items from the last inspection.  The truck is to be tentatively delivered to the fire department around December14th or 15th.   John W. asked how the fire department is paying for the accessories they want on the new truck.  Greg stated they are taking as much as they can from their general budget, he is unsure whether they are going to take the remainder from investment or Relief general fund.  They will ask the Chief at the next Council meeting.

 City hall updates: John W. shared the old propane tank will be removed and the igniter and regulators on the boiler have been replaced.  Still working on electric and thermostat issues.

3rd Ave. S. Sewer: Joan stated she had a conversation with Peter Medial at the Public Finance Authority (PFA) and Peter has looked over our application for funding for 3rd Ave. S. sewer.  Peter stated we qualify for a 80% forgivable loan on a $400,000 project for a 20 year loan at around 1% interest rate.  Based on this information the City’s portion for this project should be around $80,000. Council stated Joan is to contact MSA to start working on getting the project ready for bid in January.  John W. explained to the audience that the 3rd Ave. project is a sewer replacement and lift station removal project to reduce our I&I.

Public Works employee: John W. shared that we need to do something for the public works/road department.  John G. stated we are currently dependent on retirees for our equipment operators, we have no one in house.  John W. stated our current temporary employee is doing a great job.  John G. stated we will cross train both the road and utility employees, so they can be each other’s backup.  Suzanne stated she is concerned on the amount of work the Councilors are doing and feels this would be a good idea.  Suzanne made a motion to offer Justin A. the position of road person with a second by Bob.  All vote in favor.  Motion passed.

AFSCME #55 contract renewal: John G. shared with Council, AFSCME #55 and the City have reached a tentative agreement on a three-year contract.

PUBLIC COMMENT: Ted Moore, from the audience asked if $14,000 per acre is the current value for land in Rice Lake.  John W. stated for this property yes as it is high land with no wetland.

Having nothing further to discuss Greg made a motion to adjourn the meeting.  John W. adjourned the meeting.