City Council Minutes of October 23, 2017

Date: 
October 23, 2017

MINUTES OF THE CITY COUNCIL MEETING

OCTOBER 23, 2017

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 October 23, 2017.

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

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

Approval of Minutes – A motion was made by Brand, seconded by Carlin, to approve the minutes of the October 9, 2017 regular City Council meeting.  With all in favor, the motion carried and the minutes were approved.  A complete copy of the minutes of the October 9, 2017 regular City Council meeting is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Proceedings 19.

Consent Agenda – In motion by Pfeifer, seconded by Parras, Resolution No. 2017-166 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. 2017-166 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 21.

Tax Increment Financing Plan No. 1-22 – David Drown Associates representative Shannon Sweeney addressed the Council to present the proposed Tax Increment Financing District No. 1-22 plan that would encompass the properties to be redeveloped at 1115 and 1123 South Minnesota Avenue.  Sweeney indicated the Tax Increment Financing District was being proposed to capture new tax increments and promote redevelopment in what is considered to be a blighted area of the community as authorized by State Statute.  Sweeney noted the plan called for a maximum length of twenty-six (26) years, although he stated the district is expected to be decertified in 6-7 years, and the plan outlined a maximum budget amount of $800,000 which is the estimate of potential increments and expenditures that would be available from the district over 26 years.  Sweeney also noted that while the development agreement to be considered next on the agenda only calls for $65,000 in increments to be paid out to the developer, the budget is higher to give flexibility in use of the Tax Increment Financing tool as the district progresses without coming back to the City Council to modify the plan.

In motion by Carlin, seconded by Brand, Resolution No. 2017-167 entitled “Resolution Approving Creation Of Tax Increment Financing District No. 1-22 And Adoption Of The Tax Increment Financing Plan Relating Thereto“ was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2017-167 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 21.

Development Agreement:  1115-1123 South Minnesota Avenue – Community Development Director Wille recommended execution of a development agreement with Growth Holdings LLC for redevelopment of the properties at 1115 and 1123 South Minnesota Avenue (Lots 9 and 10, Block 194 Amended Plat) as a strip mall to include Dunkin Donuts and other businesses. 

In response to questions raised by Councilmember Kvamme at the October 16, 2017 workshop session, Wille noted that the home was zoned RP-1 (Residential/Professional) and the Mary’s Flowers site was zoned C-4 (Highway Service Commercial) when the gateway overlay district was developed and as such, the parcels were not included in the gateway regulations. 

Wille stated the proposed development agreement, which had already been executed by Growth Holdings, LLC, included among other things:  a maximum of $65,000 “pay as you go” increments to the developer for documented expenses related to demolition of the properties and removal and reinstallation of utilities; a requirement to demolish the existing structures by November 15, 2017; a deadline for substantial completion of the redevelopment by June 1, 2018; the developer’s commitment to pave, repair, construct and plow the adjacent alleyways; developer commitment to pay the private drive for the private residential property to the north; and installation of screenage between the property and the private residential property to the north.  Finally, Wille pointed out that the agreement, and subsequently the Tax Increment Financing district, would end either upon payment of a total of $65,000 in increments to the Developer or February 1, 2024. 

Councilmember Kvamme questioned why the paving and fence would be the developer’s expense rather than being included as an eligible expense for Tax Increment Financing and a means of providing an incentive for developers to work with the City.  City Administrator Prafke indicated that while the expenditure would be an eligible expense under State law, it didn’t appear to be the City Council’s goal to offer to pay all possible expenses for a development.

Councilmember Parras expressed his belief that it was the “carrot or stick” theory and while the City may want to make it easier to do business in the community, it should be by making it easier to deal with issues like City Code regulations and state policies rather than paying for expenses.

Councilmember Kvamme questioned what options are available to rectify the “zoning error” and suggested that the Council modify the resolution to ask the developer to petition for rezoning as part of the gateway district with the City guaranteeing to waive all applicable fees for the rezoning.  After further discussion on the proposed change,  and in motion by Kvamme, seconded by Parras, Resolution No. 2017-168 entitled “Resolution Authorizing Execution Of Development Agreement With Growth Holdings LLC For Construction Of Private Improvements Within Tax Increment Financing District 1-22“ was introduced with the addition of language directing staff to request Growth Holdings, LLC submit a petition to the City for rezoning of the property for inclusion in the Gateway Overlay District with City assurances of waiving all applicable fees.

Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted as modified.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2017-168 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 21.

Building Code Regulation Updates – City Administrator Prafke recommended modification to the City Code to change language in the building code requirements that would specify the City follows the most up-to-date version of State building, housing, and fire codes rather than having to modify the City Code each time the State adopts a new version.  In motion by Brand, seconded by Kvamme, Ordinance No. 34, Third Series entitled “An Ordinance Of The City Of Saint Peter Amending City Code Chapter 10 ‘Buildings And Building Regulations’ Section 10-31 ‘Building Code Adopted” And Adopting By Reference Saint Peter City Code Chapter 1 Section 1-4, Which, Among Other Things, Contain Penalty Provisions“ was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Ordinance was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Ordinance No. 34, Third Series is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Ordinances 2.

Baseball Association Donation Acceptance – Public Works Director Moulton reported the St. Peter Baseball Association wished to donate a Cambria countertop, with an estimated value of $8,500, to be installed in the new press box at Veteran’s Memorial Park.  Moulton reminded the Council the City’s donation policy required formal action for acceptance of donations valued at more than $7,500.  In motion by Pfeifer, seconded by Parras, Resolution No. 2017-169 entitled “Resolution Accepting Donation Of Countertop For Press Box From The St. Peter Baseball Association (SPBA)“ was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2017-169 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 21.

Reports

Mayor’s Report – Mayor Zieman reminded the public of the upcoming general election on November 7th and the Solace project groundbreaking ceremony at 4:00 p.m. on October 24th.

Training Updates – City Administrator Prafke reported the City’s joint diversity training program with North Mankato and Nicollet County had been completed and City staff had completed fall all-staff training which is held twice a year.

Finance Committee Meeting – City Administrator Prafke reported the City Council’s Finance Committee would meet on November 20th at 5:00 p.m. to review the proposed 2018-2019 legal services contract with Brandt Law Office.

SMMPA Board Election -  City Administrator Prafke congratulated Public Works Director Moulton on his election to the SMMPA Board of Directors.  Prafke noted that having a City representative on the Board was beneficial to the City.

Curbside Leaf Collection – Public Works Director Moulton reported the curbside leaf collection had begun for properties north of Broadway Avenue.  Moulton noted the crews would work sunrise to sunset and make more than one pass in an attempt to get all the leaves.  Moulton also encouraged residents to follow the progress of the collection on the City’s website or Facebook page.  Councilmember Carlin encouraged residents to keep leaves on the boulevard and not in the street where the materials could enter the City’s storm sewer system.

Mayor Zieman reminded the public of the Nicollet County Trails Association Haunted Hayride and the antique snowmobile show scheduled for the weekend.

There being no further business, a motion was made by Pfeifer, seconded by Parras, to adjourn.  With all in favor, the motion carried and the meeting adjourned at 7:49 p.m.