2017 June 12 Council minutes



June 12, 2017

The meeting was called to order at 6:00 pm by Mayor Werner.  The Pledge of Allegiance was recited by those in attendance.  Present for the meeting: Mayor John Werner; Councilors Greg Andrews, Suzanne Herstad, Bob Quade, and John Goman; City Attorney Mike Couri; Clerk Joan Jauss; Treasurer Holly Herstad; and the attached list of public.



Email from S. Davey – chloride on roads. Joan gave Council a copy with her response stating chloride will be applied in July

Email from Michael McGregor – water/sewer extension. Joan gave Council a copy with her response stating at this time the City is not looking to do any water or sewer extensions due to costs.  Any extensions that are occurring have been at the developer’s cost.

League of MN Cities(LMC) letter – LMC 2017 annual dues remained the same as 2016

Email from Jesse Martus – establishing a school district. Joan shared an email from the resident asking about establishing a new school district.  Suzanne stated school district boundaries are set up by the Minnesota Department of Education.  Mike stated to develop a new school district we would need special legislation to get established. Greg told Joan to contact the Minnesota Department of Education to get more information.  Joan will respond to the resident.

Email from Dean Miller – AirBNB. Joan shared a copy of an email asking about AirBNB. There was some discussion as to what AirBNB is, it is about renting portions or your whole home for short term rental.  Currently we do not have any language in our ordinance relating to this issue as it has not been an issue in the City. After some discussion, it was agreed that Teresa Koivula will research and get more information on the subject and see what the surrounding areas are doing.

Minnesota Rural Water Association – There is a workshop on sustainable management & rate setting on June 8th.

General Correspondence – see folder



May 22, 2016 City Council minutes

May 22, 2017 MS4 Permit public hearing minutes

May 25, 2017 Emergency City Hall sewer meeting minutes



Executed Claims

General fund checks –  11652-11704 and 431E thru 432E

Payroll checks –  856-888

Fair Housing Authority –  none

Bob made a motion to approve the consent agenda with a second by John G.  All vote in favor.  Motion passed.


*Greg reported we are busy repairing utilities and hoping funding will come through for 3rd Ave. S.  A pre-construction meeting for painting the water tower is set for this Friday.  Televising East Calvary and 2nd Ave. N. will start late June.

*Suzanne nothing to report.

*Bob thanked Homecroft School for helping with roadside cleanup and thanked all others who helped with cleaning up some of the other road sides.  Bob said he is getting asked when ditch mowing will begin, John W. stated it will be in July.  Pot hole repairs have been taking place.  Rice Lake Dam Road construction is continuing and paving should start this week.  Residents on the Rice Lake Dam Road are concerned about traffic speed.  John W. stated he will be contacting St. Louis Co. Sheriff for more patrols once paving is done.  Arrowhead Transit and the DTA are doing studies on public transportation in our area. MIC is discussing truck routes, most of the roads used by the trucks are county roads.  Bob stated there is not a handicap sidewalk at the park that goes to the pavilion from the parking lot. The City may want to look into adding a sidewalk in the future.

*John G. nothing to report.

*John W. mentioned there will be an honorary ceremony for a fallen marine on July 15th at Calvary Cemetery which will cause traffic issues, he has been coordinating traffic control with the various patrols.


Treasurer: Cash and expense report is in the Council packet.

 Building Department: Joan read the following report into record for May as prepared by Toni


Type of Permit Issued                   # issued

  • Roof                                                 2
  • New Home                                     2
  • Garage/Pole Barn                        3
  • Furnace/Boiler                             2
  • Gas                                                  2
  • Basement wall repair                  1
  • Demo                                             2         

Total issued                                       14

Total valuation of projects:      $ 812,904.00

Fines                                       $            0.00

Total fees assessed:               $      9870.22

 Planning & Zoning report: Joan read the following report into record for May as prepared by Teresa Koivula.

  • Rezone Application: 1
  • Home Business Agreement: 1
  • Citizen Complaint: 8
  • Onsite Visits: 17
  • Outgoing Correspondence: 11
  • Junk/salvage yard clean up in progress: 12
  • Agriculture Violation abated: 1
  • MPCA Investigations: 1
  • DNR Investigations: 2
  • WLSSD Violation: 1
  • Red Cross CPR Certification Training: 1
  • Reappointment of two planning commission members

John W stated Teresa is making headway on junk violations.  He wants her to continue to be active with these violations.

Public Works/Road & Bridge: Joan read the following report into record for May as prepared by Justin Schendel.

Road and Bridge

  • Used loader to repair damage to Fauvelle Road
  • Used loader to fix minor damage to Birchwood Road ditch
  • Patched 1st S. and Fayre Road
  • Assisted John W. with marking Luzerne center line.
  • Assisted Johnson Excavating with seeding and spreading hay on Stockholm Road ditch


  • 44 Gopher One State locates in May
  • Exercised booster pumps weekly
  • Shut down water tower circulating pump for the summer
  • Replaced one water meters
  • Assisted Johnson Excavating with water main break on E. Calvary twice
  • Disassembled broken gate valve from E. Calvary main break
  • Assisted MSA Professionals with hydrant flow test
  • Assisted Johnson Excavating with stand pipe repair on Arnold Road
  • Studied with Frank Stemke at MRWA for wastewater license test
  • Received gas monitor from Copperhead Innovation


  • Removed sander from 1 ton truck with backhoe and cleaned
  • Attended CPR/AED training class
  • Assisted Bill with three loads in 1 ton of aluminum cans to Simko
  • Assisted Doug Quade with switching cutting edges on grader
  • Installed new battery in Skagg lawnmower

John W. asked what was the result of the water flow testing that was done.  Joan said Joe at MSA will bring a report to the Utility meeting.

Fire Department: Chief Niemi read the May report into record.

Total Calls:

  • February Total Calls Responded to was 15.
    • 8 Medical
    • 1 Lift Assist
    • 1 Carbon Monoxide Alarm Sounding
    • 1 Structure Fire
    • 1 Vehicle Fire
    • 1 Grass Fire
    • 1 Smoke Alarm Install

Life Saver Honors

  • 4 members earned lifesaving honors while responding to a report of a pulseless non-breathing patient. In conjunction with Lakewood Fire they were able to perform lifesaving measures and regain a pulse on the individual and they are still alive today.

Water Usage

  • We used approximately 4,000 Gallons of water above the normal consumption

Hydrant Information

  • When the city becomes aware of hydrants that need to be taken out of service, we would like to be notified of these hydrants and then also when they are back in service.

Joan will pass this request to Justin.

John W. said the North building is sinking, they have put more gravel down to level out the building.

Bob stated when he was trimming around the memorial at the south fire hall he noticed mold on the exterior of the north entry door, he asked if Mark would look at it and see if it needs power washing. John W. stated the interior downstairs at the south fire hall is being painted, Mark will talk with the painter as he needs some items moved.

Animal Control: Joan read the following report into record for May as submitted by Gloria Dallum.

  • Hours worked                          27.05
  • Miles driven                             44
  • License fees collected            $20
  • Citations issued                      0
  • Fines issued                            $0
  • Dogs to kennel                        0
  • Dogs to pound                        0

John W. asked Joan to have Gloria attend the Council meeting in July, he has a question on her hours worked and miles driven.

Utilities: Joan submitted the following report for May.

  • Monthly meter readings done
  • Updated Ordinance #25 Sewer was adopted
  • AT&T is working on moving the antennas off the water tower
  • Repaired various manholes and valve boxes

Sheriff: January, February, and March 2017 reports in the Council’s packet.  John W. stated he has noticed an increased presence on the W. Tischer Road area.

Sewer and water report: In Council’s packet

 Park Report:  Joan read the following report into record:

  • Park gates were opened and field nets were re-installed
  • All mowing and weed shacking was done as needed
  • Playground equipment was inspected for needed repairs
  • Park committee and Council agreed to disband the Park Committee, City Council will address any park repairs or concerns.


Eagle Scout Project – David Sirois:  4049 West Tischer Road.  David is in Troop 7 with Family of God Church, he is proposing an Eagle Scout Project of painting and repairing Rice Lake’s recycling sheds. This includes repairing the trim and drip edge, painting the trim and the sheds themselves with two coats of paint. David plans to do the work on August 25th thru 27th.  Greg asked about an alternate date, David stated the alternate date would be two weeks later.  David will be getting help from the troop, his family, and others.  He will be following up with people to make sure everyone is available.  Adults will be operating the power tools for safety reasons.  David reviewed supply list for the project with a total cost of $299.50.  Bob stated woodpeckers have been making holes in the buildings and the holes should be filled before painting.  John W. informed them that there is a possibility the hall may be closed as it could be under construction in August so an outhouse would be available and there may not be running water.  Suzanne made a motion to support the Eagle Scout Project, with an estimated cost for supplies of $299.50 with a second by Greg.  All vote in favor.  Motion passed.

WLSSD recycle shed stats and grant letter:  Joan shared a letter from WLSSD stating we were awarded a $9,988.80 grant from WLSSD for the recycle shed.  The 2016 recycling report showed about 150,000 pounds of recycling.  The pounds have dropped drastically since curbside recycling has been implemented.

G.O. Capital Improvement Bond: Joan shared a copy of the information she received from George Eilertson at Northland Securities about the criteria the City needs to follow for the issuance of a G.O. Capital Improvement bond, the purpose is to do some major repairs to City Hall. She reviewed all the repairs needed to be done: furnace, septic lines, lighting, windows/doors, repair block wall that is leaking, roof, and ceiling.  John W. said staff will be temporarily moving to the public works building so the projects can be done at the same time instead of spreading them out.  A capital improvement plan must be completed, a public hearing notice needs to be published and posted and the Council must approve a capital improvement plan.  John W. is concerned about the estimates we have received for the repairs expiring, Mike suggested asking the contractors to extend the estimate for 60 days or until the end of August.  John G. asked if funds could be taken out of reserves, Joan said there is only $26,000 available for City Hall repairs.  Joan will research if it’s possible to start the work prior to the 30-day waiting period after the public hearing. Joan asked the Council to set a tentative public hearing date, Council agreed to the tentative date of June 28th at 6:00, Rice Lake City Hall.  John W. reiterated and explained for the public the issues with the hall.  It was agreed to postpone discussion on the repair estimates, as we are still missing some.


Resolution 17-06-14 Establishing 2017 City Building Department Fees: Joan stated the attached Schedules A and B are the actual fees that will be adopted with Resolution 17-06-14 as well as the new flat fees.  Suzanne asked if there isn’t a dollar amount listed on the schedule then is the valuation fee used, Joan said yes.  Mike asked if our ordinance states we can adopt fees by resolution.  Joan said she is unsure but will research it.  Mike said to go ahead and continue with resolution but check how the ordinance is written and if it does not have language that allows adopting fees by resolution then the ordinance will have to be revisited.  Suzanne asked if the reason for changing the fees is to make the fee amounts more simple and consistent for the residents in Rice Lake. Toni stated yes, this will make fees more consistent and not all based on the value of the project. Suzanne made a motion to approve Resolution 17-06-14 Establishing 2017 City Building Department Fees with a second by Greg.  All vote in favor.  Motion passed.

Park improvements: Joan gave Council copies of estimates for fencing at the park to add fencing to the right field south fence is $4,350 and the west parking lot with a gate is $3,600 for a total of $7,950.  Suzanne asked if the right field fencing will complete the soccer field, John W. said yes.  John W. stated the City is also looking to add more picnic tables and garbage cans.  Joan shared a quote for five picnic tables for $4,117.79.  Bob asked if there wasn’t any place closer to get the tables from so we do not have to pay $716 for shipping.  Joan stated this is the company we used in the past to purchase the tables we currently have at the park.  It was agreed everyone liked the tables that we had purchased previously.  If we purchase five new tables we can take the wood tables and put them by the soccer fields area.  Joan also shared there are now two porta-potties, one by the pavilion and the other by the soccer field.  John W. said he would like to thank Tom McCabe Jr. for donating the wood chips that were delivered for under the playground equipment. Joan shared a breakdown of expenses and budget for these improvements, the budget for the park for this year is $18,000 and if we do this work as well as two garbage cans the cost will be approximately $13,000.  Suzanne asked about the repairs to the playground equipment, Joan stated she is still waiting for an estimate.  We are also waiting for an estimate for the two garbage cans.             John G. made a motion to approve installation of the fencing and ordering five tables with a second by Bob.  All vote in favor.  Motion passed.

MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT: Bob made a motion to adjourn the meeting with a second by Suzanne.  All vote in favor.  Meeting was adjourned.