October 29, 2019

The City Council of Pelican Rapids met in regular session at 5:00 p.m., on Tuesday, 10-29-19 in Council Chambers, City Hall.

Mayor Frazier called the meeting to order at 5:00 p.m.

Roll call was taken by Clerk-Treasurer Danielle Heaton. 

Mayor Frazier and four members of the Council were present at roll call: Council Member Steve Strand; Council Member Curt Markgraf; Council Member Kevin Ballard; Council member Steve Foster.

City staff present: Administrator Don Solga and Clerk-Treasurer Danielle Heaton. 

General Attendance: Caitlin Stoecker, Dave Schornack, Joyce Burnham, Kathy Knuteson-Olson, Patrick Hollister and Lou Hoglund from the Pelican Press were also present.

Mayor Brent Frazier welcomed everyone to the Council Meeting.

All present stood and said the Pledge of Allegiance.

Kathy Knuteson-Olson commented on the usage of the Library.  

Motion by Foster, seconded by Strand to approve the agenda with the addition of No. 16 WWTF Allen-Bradley Repair. Motion passed unanimously.

Motion by Strand, seconded by Ballard to approve the consent agenda with the removal of the 10/08/19 Council Meeting Minutes.

a) Approval of Minutes – Council Meeting 10/08/19

b) Approval of Accounts Payable Listing

c) Dunn Township Dunvilla Lions Club Raffle at VFW Post 5252, 11/30/19

d) Staff Reports

1. Utility Report

2. Liquor Store Report

Motion passed unanimously. 

Council Member Foster asked that the 10/08/19 minutes be amended to reflect that the meeting was adjourned without a motion. Motion by Foster, seconded by Strand to approve the amended minutes to read: The Council Meeting was adjourned by Acting Mayor Foster at 6:21 p.m. Motion to amend the minutes passed unanimously.

Caitlin Stoecker from Arvig played Council the video that Arvig created for the Smart Rural Community Award and presented a sign to the city. 

Administrator Solga reported that the preliminary plans and specs for the Library Roof have been completed and were sent to the Library Roof Committee. 

Council Member Ballard wanted to discuss the makeup of the Library Board. The Council appoints a Council member to the Planning Commission and he was wondering if Council would like to do the same for the Library Board. That council position would attend the Library Board meetings, answer Library Board questions if any and report back to Council. He feels that this would help with communication between the Library and the City.  

Council Member Ballard stated that he would like a council member appointed to the Library Board. At this time Council Member Markgraf is a member of the Library Board. Markgraf stated he is willing to be that person until his term is up in 2021. Council Member Strand would appreciate more information about the Library. Council Member Foster expressed his disappointment at the way things have transpired.  He uses the Library frequently, but feels things should have been handled differently. The Library request for increased funds was approved as requested. 

The support the city provides annually to West Central Initiative has always been dedicated to the WCI Endowment.  It was recently discovered that the support can be used for their annual work in Economic Development. WCI asked what Council’s wishes for the annual support are. Motion by Foster, seconded by Frazier to contribute the funds to the annual work in Economic Development. Motion passed unanimously.

Council reviewed the Greater Minnesota Transportation Alternatives & Safe Routes to School Joint Solicitation 2019/20 Letter of Intent Worksheet. The City can request up to $700,000. Motion by Foster, seconded by Markgraf to approve the letter of intent as presented. Motion passed unanimously.

Council reviewed the property tax rebate program that Administrator Solga worked on with the County. The tax rebate would be for new single and two-family homes. Motion by Foster, seconded by Ballard to approve the tax rebate program beginning January 1, 2020 until December 31, 2022. Motion passed unanimously. 

Council reviewed the document that the Incentive Work Group had presented to Council in 2018. It was decided that an incentive committee will be put together. Mayor Frazier and Council Member Foster volunteered to be on the committee. Motion by Strand, seconded by Markgraf to appoint Frazier and Foster to the Incentives Committee. Motion passed unanimously.

Pool Committee minutes were included in the packet for Council. 

Administrator Solga reviewed the Allen Bradley repair at the WWTF. The repair will cost $2,275 with additional costs for programming the repaired equipment. Motion by Strand, seconded by Ballard to approve the repair. Motion passed unanimously.  

The Mayor reported that since the last meeting he received calls, emails and texts regarding funding cuts to the library. He attended the Mayor’s Breakfast in Vergas, Pool Committee meeting, Mayor’s meeting in Fergus Falls, and attended a MnDOT meeting regarding 2024 Complete Streets project. 

Administrator Solga reported that since the last city council meeting he has;  met with PartnerShip4Health regarding the completion of the Bikeable Friendly Community grant application; continued working with Lakes Country Service Coop on the PBX phone system install; spent time working with Arvig and LCSC on computer internet and printer issues;  met with MNDOT Detroit Lakes to discuss the cost share of the 2024 Complete Streets project; worked on the TA grant Letter of Intent;  worked on housing tax rebate and incentives documents; met with Otter Tail County Community Development Agency’s Amy Baldwin and a potential housing developer to discuss housing tax abatement and other economic development programs; received and reviewed library roof draft plans/specs documents and passed them onto the library roof committee; attended an MPCA webinar related to water fee advisory committee report; worked on police union issues; attended city’s safety committee meeting; met with engineers, elected officials, street department superintendent and MNDOT to discuss the airport ALP; worked with People Service to complete MPCA application for approval of more biosolid’s application land; continued work on city vs Gridor construction law suit.                      

Motion by Strand, seconded by Markgraf to adjourn the Council meeting at 6:37 p.m. Motion passed unanimously. 

Danielle Heaton, MCMC