City Council Meeting Minutes of March 24, 2014

Date: 
March 24, 2014

 

MINUTES OF THE CITY COUNCIL MEETING

MARCH 24, 2014

 

Pursuant to due call and notice thereof, a regular meeting of the City Council of the City of Saint Peter was conducted in the Governors' Room of the Community Center on March 24, 2014.

A quorum present, Mayor Strand called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.  The following members were present:  Councilmembers Grams, Zieman, Brand, Kvamme, Parras and Mayor Strand.  Absent was Councilmember Carlin.  The following officials were present: City Administrator Prafke, City Attorney Brandt, and City Engineers Domras and Loose.

Approval of Agenda – A motion was made by Zieman, seconded by Brand, to approve the agenda.  With all in favor, the motion carried. 

Public Hearing Road Right-of-Way Vacation:  South Minnesota Avenue, Highway 333, Highway 295 – Mayor Strand opened the public hearing on vacation of road right-of-way for a portion of South Minnesota Avenue, Trunk Highway 333 and Trunk Highway 295 at 7:01 p.m.  Community Development Director Wille presented the recommendation for vacation of the portions of roadway which are no longer used for roadway purposes and were abandoned upon the completion of the realignment of South Minnesota Avenue in 2011 and adoption of Right-of-Way Plat #1.  Wille indicated the roadway would revert to the State of Minnesota through the Department that oversees the Regional Treatment Center.  City Administrator Prafke indicated that the State is no longer allowed to transfer property between State divisions or departments and must utilize a third party (the City of Saint Peter) to complete the transfer.  There being no further speakers, the hearing was declared closed at 7:04 p.m.

Approval of Minutes – Councilmember Parras objected to language in the minutes related to the cooperative agreement with MnDOT for the Highway 169 project.  Parras objected to a phrase in the statement attributed to City Administrator Prafke which read, “….the proposed agreement doesn’t require the City to build the roundabout but does require the City to fund it and it does assume the City has worked in good faith with MnDOT….”  Parras asked for “fund it” to be changed.  Staff suggested the words “if built” be added after “fund it”.  A motion was made by Kvamme, seconded by Parras, to approve the minutes of the February 24, 2014 regular City Council meeting with the proposed language change.  With all in favor, the motion carried and the minutes were approved as modified.  A complete copy of the minutes of the February 24, 2014 regular City Council meeting is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Proceedings 18. 

Consent Agenda – In motion by Zieman, seconded by Kvamme, Resolution No. 2014-28 entitled “Resolution Approving Consent Agenda“ was introduced. Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-28 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20.

Fire Relief Association Bylaws –  City Administrator Prafke recommended approval of the updated Fire Relief Association bylaws.  Prafke noted the updates are done on a regular basis and the current changes were suggested by the State Attorney General’s office for all Relief Associations in Minnesota.  In motion by Brand, seconded by Parras, Resolution No. 2014-29 entitled “Resolution Approving Modified Fire Relief Association Bylaws”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-29 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Tobacco Ordinance Modification (E-Cigarettes) – City Administrator Prafke recommended the City Code by modified to include the definition of products commonly known as “e-cigarettes” under the tobacco products definitions which would require anyone selling the products to be licensed by the City and the products to be kept behind the counter.  Prafke also recommended adoption of a resolution similar to one adopted in 2002 that would continue to restrict tobacco use from within ten feet (10’) of the door of a City building (including the outdoor swimming pool) and would be modified to also include a ban on e-cigarette use in these facilities.   Finally, Prafke reported that the proposed actions would not restrict smoking of e-cigarettes in privately owned establishments, which would be up to the individual property owners and may be restricted by changes to the Clean Indoor Air Act which were being considered in the Minnesota Legislature. 

Erin Simmons of the American Lung Association, addressed the Council to encourage adoption of regulations that would ban use of e-cigarettes and prohibit “sampling” of such products at places such as hookah bars.  Simmons indicated her belief that 79% of Minnesotan’s support such a ban and young people see e-cigarettes as a glamorous product that is part of the social norm.

Sandra Renor, a local public health nurse, stated she would love to see our community put tight reins on big tobacco and encouraged the Council to do whatever they can to protect Saint Peter youth.

City Administrator Prafke reminded the Council that adoption of the ordinance and resolution did not prohibit use of e-cigarette products and only restricted sale of the products by licensed vendors and prohibited use of the products in and within ten feet of the door of City owned buildings and the outdoor swimming pool.

In motion by Grams, seconded by Brand, Ordinance No. 14 Third Series entitled “An Ordinance Amending Saint Peter City Code Chapter 12 ‘Business Regulation And Licensing’, Article III ‘Tobacco Products’ By The Modification Of Section 12-58 ‘Definitions’ And Adopting By Reference Saint Peter City Code Chapter 1 Section 1-6, Which, Among Other Things, Contain Penalty Provisions”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, Councilmembers Grams, Zieman, Kvamme, Brand and Mayor Strand voting aye, Councilmember Parras voting nay, the Ordinance was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Ordinance No. 14, Third Series is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Ordinances 2. 

In motion by Brand, seconded by Zieman, Resolution No. 2014-30 entitled “Resolution Designating City Buildings As ‘Smoke Free’”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, Councilmembers Grams, Zieman, Kvamme, Brand and Mayor Strand voting aye, Councilmember Parras voting nay, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-30 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Unbudgeted Purchase:  Utility Truck –  Water Utilities Superintendent Moulton presented Public Works Director Giesking’s request for authorization for the unbudgeted purchase of a 2014 Ford 4x4 half-ton super cab utility truck from Tenvoorde Ford in the amount of $27,051.75 that would replace a 1995 Chevrolet truck that would be declared as surplus property.  Moulton explained it was an unbudgeted request because funding would come from the stormwater, water and wastewater budgets and only the stormwater budget had been adopted for 2014.  Councilmember Brand questioned why Ford trucks were the only ones being considered for the purchase.  Moulton explained that Ford was the only manufacturer that made trucks that could accommodate tool boxes for equipment that is eight feet in length and that such equipment was used every day during the majority of the year by the water, wastewater, and stormwater crews  Moulton also stated a super cab truck was being recommended because the crew carries maps and expensive locators which could not be stored in the tool boxes and a four door truck could be purchased, but it would be so long it would become ineffective to use on a daily basis.  In motion by Kvamme, seconded by Zieman, Resolution No. 2014-31 entitled “Resolution Authorizing Unbudgeted Purchase Of A Ford 4X4 Super Cab”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with Councilmembers Grams, Zieman, Kvamme, Parras and Mayor Strand voting aye, Councilmember Brand abstaining, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-31 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Rain Barrel Program – Water Utilities Superintendent Moulton presented Public Works Director Giesking’s request for authorization to reinstate the rain barrel program which had been well received by utility customers in the last two years.  Moulton indicated the same four local vendors would be used for sale of the barrels and rebates of $25 per barrel or $10 per barrel kit would be available up to a total budget of $1,000.  In motion by Parras, seconded by Brand, Resolution No. 2014-32 entitled “Resolution Authorizing Continuation Of Rain Barrel Program And Establishing Funding For Rebate Program”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-32 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Nicollet Avenue Electric Project Materials Bid Authorization – Water Utilities Superintendent Moulton presented Public Works Director Giesking’s request for receipt of bids for electric system materials that would be used to complete a transmission loop from the Sunrise Substation to the Broadway Substation.  Moulton reported the materials were expected to cost $380,000 and over $100,000 in wire had already been purchased for the project which would be installed this summer by the City’s Linemen.  In motion by Grams, seconded by Parras, Resolution No. 2014-33 entitled “Resolution Authorizing Receipt Of Bids For Purchase Of Materials For Nicollet Avenue Electric Project”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-33 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Road Right-Of-Way Vacation – Following the public hearing, Community Development Director Wille recommended approval of the vacation of abandoned right-of-way along South Washington Avenue, Trunk Highway 333 and Trunk Highway 295.  In motion by Kvamme, seconded by Parras, Resolution No. 2014-34 entitled “Resolution Vacating Those Sections Of South Washington Avenue, TH 295 And TH 333 Abandoned Upon The 2011 Realignment Of South Washington Avenue”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-34 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Registered Land Survey:  Lot 4, Block 2 Pine Pointe Subdivision No. 3 – Community Development Director Wille presented the Planning Commission’s recommendation for approval of Registered Land Survey #65 which would create Parcels A and B from Lot 4, Block 2 Pine Pointe Subdivision #3.  Wille indicated Parcel A would be sold by the current property owner for construction of a single family home and Parcel B would be sold to an abutting property owner as an undevelopable lot with no street frontage.  Wille indicated the Planning Commission’s recommendation was contingent upon the abutting property owner agreeing that Parcel B would not be developed and Wille reported he had written confirmation from the abutting property owner that it would not be developed.  In motion by Parras, seconded by Kvamme, Resolution No. 2014-35 entitled “Resolution Accepting Registered Land Survey #65, Creating Two Parcels Upon The Split Of Lot 4, Block 2, Pine Pointe Subdivision #3”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-35 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Revolving Loan Request:  Tanis Brothers – Community Development Director Wille presented the Economic Development Authority’s recommendation for approval of a revolving loan request in the amount of $59,012 for Tanis Brothers LLC for renovation of a commercial property at 309 South Minnesota Avenue.  Wille indicated the loan would be at three percent (3%) interest, amortized over twenty (20) years with a balloon payment due at ten (10) years as per the updated loan guidelines and would be secured by a second mortgage on the property and a personal guarantee by Patrick Tanis.  Wille indicated the property housed the Comfort Systems business and the upstairs would be renovated into two efficiency apartments with a pre-construction appraisal of the property at $105,000 and a post development estimated valuation of $255,000.  Paul Tanis, Jr., who is the father of and has power of attorney for Patrick Tanis, appeared before the Council to report Patrick was pleased to invest in the downtown and that one of the apartments was already leased.  Mr. Tanis also indicated that no funds would be requested from the loan until the remodeling project was completed.  Councilmember Grams asked what the rent would be for the apartments.  Mr. Tanis reported the apartments would be loft style efficiency units with sky lights, high ceilings and hardwood floors and would rent for between $700-750.  In motion by Brand, seconded by Parras, Resolution No. 2014-36 entitled “Resolution Approving $59,012 Revolving Loan To Tanis Brothers, LLC To Partially Finance The Renovation And Rehabilitation Of A Commercial Structure Located At 309 South Minnesota Avenue”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-36 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Ritt Street Property Lease – Community Development Director Wille requested approval for execution of a lease between the Economic Development Authority (EDA) and Quality Products LLC (MRCI) for the property at 430 Ritt Street.  Wille indicated the current tenant, Jari USA, had chosen not to renew the lease and would vacate the property at the end of March.   Wille had negotiated with the subtenant in the building, Quality Products LLC, for a one year lease at $3 per square foot which would provide $9,166 in monthly revenue on the property.  Wille reported the property would continue to be offered for sale and the lease included a sixty (60) day termination clause.  In motion by Kvamme, seconded by Brand, Resolution No. 2014-47 entitled “Resolution Authorizing The President Of The EDA To Execute A One Year Lease Of The 430 Ritt Street Property By And Between The Saint Peter Economic Development Authority And Quality Products LLC”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-37 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Real Estate Listing Agreement – Community Development Director Wille requested approval for execution of a one year real estate listing agreement with Coldwell Banker Commercial-Fischer Group to market the 430 Ritt Street Property.  Wille indicated Coldwell would receive a six percent (6%) commission upon sale of the property or six percent (6%) of the first year’s rental if another tenant was found for the building.  Wille also noted that they would receive no commission if the City were to sell the property to Quality Products LLC/MRCI.  In motion by Kvamme, seconded by Grams, Resolution No. 2014-38 entitled “Resolution Authorizing The EDA President To Execute A Real Estate Listing Agreement By And Between The EDA And Coldwell Banker Commercial-Fisher Group For The Sale Of The 430 Ritt Street Property Owned By The Saint Peter Economic Development Authority”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-38 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20.  Councilmember Grams expressed his appreciation to Community Development Director Wille for his work on negotiating a lease for the property.

Equipment Certificate Solicitation – City Administrator Prafke recommended competitive bids be received for the 2014 equipment certificate in the amount of $345,000.  Prafke reported the projected interest on the equipment certificates was three percent (3%) which would result in an annual debt service of $76,000.  Councilmember Parras expressed his continued objection to purchase of the tactical response vehicle which was included in the equipment certificate budget.  Prafke reminded the Council they had already approved several purchases to be funded by the equipment certificate, including the tactical vehicle.  Councilmember Brand asked if the Mechanic’s replacement truck had been removed from the budget.  Prafke indicated the purchase would be delayed another year unless other funding was found.  In motion by Zieman, seconded by Grams, Resolution No. 2014-39 entitled “Resolution Authorizing Solicitation Of Bids For $345,000 Equipment Certificate”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-39 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Transit Language Assistance Program – City Administrator Prafke recommended approval be provided for an updated language assistance program for the City’s transit system.  Prafke noted adoption of the program, with the changes required by the Federal government, was mandatory for the City to continue to receive the 80% funding for transit operational costs.  In motion by Grams, seconded by Zieman, Resolution No. 2014-40 entitled “Resolution Approving Federal Title VI Language Assistance Plan”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-40 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

Reports

American Public Power Association (APPA) Legislative Rally – Mayor Strand and Councilmember Kvamme reported the meeting with Minnesota Legislators in Washington, D.C. went very well and the trip was successful.

“Vietnam Veterans Day” Proclamation – Mayor Strand proclaimed March 29, 2014 as “Vietnam Veterans Day” in Saint Peter and encouraged residents to attend the ceremony on March 29th at 4:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

City/County Meeting Discussion – City Administrator Prafke reported discussion at the last City/County meeting included the transit system, transit development and the survey; road work including the Highway 99 and Highway 22 bridges; solid waste fees; flood planning; and stormwater development on the west side of Saint Peter.

Council Goal Session – City Administrator Prafke reminded Councilmembers that there would not be a workshop on March 31st, but the Council would instead meet in a goal session beginning at 3:00 p.m.

Transit Anniversary – City Administrator Prafke invited the public to a celebration of the 25th year of operation of the City’s transit system which would occur on March 25, 2014 from 2-4:00 p.m. at the Community Center.  Prafke indicated the Transit Coordinator would be at the Community Center to answer questions about the transit system and refreshments and door prizes would be available.

Executive Session:  Land Acquisition Negotiations – City Administrator Prafke requested a closed session be convened in the Traverse des Sioux Room to discuss land acquisition negotiations as allowed under State Statute.  In motion by Kvamme, seconded by Brand, Resolution No. 2014-41 entitled “Resolution Calling For Closed Session”, was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2014-41 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 20. 

The Council adjourned to closed session at 8:46 p.m. in the Traverse des Sioux room of the Community Center to discuss land acquisition negotiations.

The Council returned to open session at 8:55 p.m.

There being no further business, a motion was made by Zieman, seconded by Brand, to adjourn.  With all in favor, the motion carried and the meeting adjourned at 8:56 p.m.