Minutes of the Hallock City Council March 1, 2021 and April 5, 2021

MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING
OF THE HALLOCK CITY COUNCIL
MONDAY, MARCH 1, 2021
CALL TO ORDER:
Mayor Dave Treumer called the regular meeting of the Hallock City Council to order at 5:35 pm on March 1, 2021. Those Present: Mayor Dave Treumer, Mike Totleben, Kevin Waller and Naomi Larson. Jen Peterson was absent.
Also present: City Clerk-Administrator Aimee Sugden, Utility Superintendent Dan Larson, Police Chief Mike Docken, Airport Manager Jeremy Seng, Fire Chief Kevin Klein and Fireman Scott Slusar.
APPROVE AGENDA:
Councilor Totleben moved to approve the agenda. The motion was seconded by Councilor Waller and carried unanimously.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
Councilor Larson moved to approve the Minutes of the Hallock City Council Meeting of February 1, 2021. The motion was seconded by Councilor Totleben and carried unanimously.
FISCAL & ADMINISTRATIVE ISSUES:
Approval of Bills
Mayor Treumer and Councilor Totleben reviewed bills.
Motion by Councilor Totleben to authorize payment of City bills in the amount of $514688.37, General fund, checks #11877 to #11917, which includes a transfer of $35,728.57 to the payroll account to cover wages, taxes and benefits. The motion was seconded by Councilor Waller and carried unanimously.
Mayor Treumer and Councilor Totleben will review bills for the April 5, 2021 meeting.
Budget to Actual Report
Administrator Sugden presented the council with a ‘Budget to Actual’ report for the month of February 2021. Councilor Waller asked that future reports call out instances in which the actual spent gets close, or goes over, the budgeted amount.
Maintenance Supervisor
Motion by Councilor Waller to approve a step in pay for Maintenance Supervisor Dan Larson retroactive to January 1, 2021. Larson will move from Step 6 to Step 7. The motion was seconded by councilor Larson and passed unanimously.
Airport:
Airport Manager Jeremy Seng updated the council on the warranty repairs being done at the new hangar. The airport was offered additional CARES funds for operations, Seng and Sugden are pursing these funds. Seng noted that the issues with the new taxilane and water pooling seem to not be as bad as originally predicted. He recommended to the council that they not pursue the repairs at this time. Lastly, Seng reported that the engineers assigned to the Hallock Airport left KLJ Engineering in February. He noted that because there aren’t any ongoing projects, now could be a good time to review airport engineers.
Two River Air Spray Utilities
Motion by Councilor Totleben to reimburse Two River Air Spray $2,344.00 for utility access. The motion was seconded by Councilor Waller and carried unanimously. The Airport Commission will take up the issue of paying the utilities at the next commission meeting.
Utility & Parks Department Report:
Utility Superintendent Larson reported that this winter has remained quiet. The crew repaired its first water line break of the season near 4th Street and Birch. The break left 3 residents without water and 3 with limited pressure. Weleske Improvements helped with the excavation of the site on Tuesday, February 23. Utility employees have completed online gas training and Larson wrapped up the annual gas survey in February.
Mayor Treumer thanked the department for their work scraping the streets on Friday, February 25. Larson noted that they will clean the streets as soon as they are able as they applied a good amount of sand throughout the winter.
Police Report:
Police Chief Docken reported to the council that the DNR denied a request to extend the special deer hunt in town. The annual deer hunt will run as usual again in the fall. Coyotes continue to be on the outskirts of town, especially on the north end. Two coyotes have been caught using traps, but Docken would like to do a ground hunt with an area hunter and their dogs.
Street Signs
Motion by Councilor Larson to purchase $1,500 in street signs to replace broken/faded/lost signs. The motion was seconded by councilor Totleben and carried unanimously.
Fire Department:
Police Chief Klein and Fireman Scott Slusar attended the meeting to present a requested constitution change to the Hallock Fire Department Constitution and a concurrent change to the Fireman’s Relief Association bylaws. The change would require members to attend 2/3 of regular meetings and trainings and 30% of fire calls (as reported to NFIRS). The department also included an update to the Fireman’s Relief Association to raise the pension payout for members. Proposed changes were written and reviewed by City Attorney George Hanson.
Motion by Councilor Larson to approve proposed changes to Article IV and Article V of the Hallock Fire Department Constitution requiring a level of attendance to remain an active-duty member. The motion was seconded by Councilor Waller and Third by Councilor Totleben and carried unanimously.
Motion by Councilor Waller to add amendment XV (pension) and XVI (active membership status) to the Hallock Fireman’s Relief bylaws. The motion was seconded by Councilor Larson and carried unanimously.
New Business:
Ottertail LED Upgrade
Motion by Councilor Totleben to approve the upgrade of city street lights to LED as proposed by Ottertail Electric. The motion was seconded by Councilor Waller and carried unanimously.
Other Business/Announcements
Upcoming Meetings
The next council meeting will be on Monday, April 5, 2021 at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall.
There will be an EDA meeting on Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 5:15 p.m. at City Hall.
Offices will be closed on Friday, April 2, 2021 in observance of Good Friday.
Administrator Sugden will be out-of-office March 8-12, 2021.
Council Roundtable & Public Comment
Hallock Resident, Tom Lanctot
Mr. Lanctot approached the council to again voice his displeasure with a ticket he received from Police Chief Docken in the fall of 2020. When asked what he would like the city to do, he said he would settle the matter with the state. Lactot thanked the council for having Police Chief Docken patrol and questioned who the responsible party was for trees in a city right-of-way.
Hallock Resident, Jerald Hess
Mr. Hess approach the council with two issues. The first being confusion regarding his official address. Administrator Sugden provided him a contact at the courthouse who could help determine his official address. The second issue pertained to chaff byproduct created by grain dryers near his property. He presented the council with photos of the nuisance byproduct. Administrator Sugden noted she discussed the issue with the dryer owners and will follow-up again to see if the issue could be resolved.
Adjournment
There being no further business, Councilor Waller moved to adjourn the Regular Meeting of the Hallock City Council on February 1, 2021. The motion was seconded by Councilor Larson and carried unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 6:52 p.m.
Dave Treumer, Mayor
Aimee Sugden, City Administrator
Minutes prepared by Aimee Sugden
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MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING
OF THE HALLOCK CITY COUNCIL
MONDAY, APRIL 5, 2021
CALL TO ORDER:
Mayor Dave Treumer called the regular meeting of the Hallock City Council to order at 5:38 pm on April 5, 2021. Those Present: Mayor Dave Treumer, Mike Totleben, Kevin Waller, Jen Peterson and Naomi Larson.
Also present: City Clerk-Administrator Aimee Sugden, Utility Superintendent Dan Larson, Police Chief Mike Docken, Airport Manager Jeremy Seng, Fire Chief Kevin Klein, Kittson County Enterprise Reporter Anna Jauhola and Farmer’s Store owner Tom Swanson.
APPROVE AGENDA:
Councilor Totleben motioned to approve the agenda. The motion was seconded by Councilor Peterson and carried unanimously.
PUBLIC HEARING; MAYPLACE ALLEY
The regular meeting was closed at 5:40 p.m. and the public hearing regarding vacating a portion of Mayplace alley near the Farmer’s Store commenced.
Farmer’s Store owner, Tom Swanson, explained to the council that he was asking for the alley to be vacated as he has maintained the space for the last several years and plans to pave it. He is aware of the sewer line running underneath the land.
There being no further public comment regarding vacating Mayplace Alley, Councilor Peterson moved to close the public hearing. The motion was seconded by Councilor Larson and carried unanimously. The public hearing was closed at 5:50 p.m.
Motion by Councilor Totleben to approve Resolution 2021-03; Notice of Completion and Resolution Vacating an Alleyway. The motion was seconded by Councilor Waller and carries unanimously.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
Councilor Peterson noted an error on the minutes from the regular meeting on March 1, 2021.
Councilor Waller moved to approve the minutes of the regular Hallock City Council Meeting on March 1, 2021 with the necessary changes. The motion was seconded by Councilor Totleben and carried unanimously.
Councilor Totleben moved to approve the minutes of the special Hallock City Council Meeting on March 30, 2021. The motion was seconded by Councilor Larson and carried unanimously.
FISCAL & ADMINISTRATIVE ISSUES:
Approval of Bills
Mayor Treumer and Councilor Totleben reviewed bills.
Motion by Councilor Totleben to authorize payment of City bills in the amount of $127,925.02, General fund, checks #11918 to #11959, which includes a transfer of $60,107.59 to the payroll account to cover wages, taxes and benefits. The motion was seconded by Councilor Waller and carried unanimously.
Mayor Treumer and Councilor Totleben will review bills for the May 3, 2021 meeting.
Budget to Actual Report
Administrator Sugden presented the council with a ‘Budget to Actual’ report for the month of March 2021. Sugden explained that the only thing to note was that there were three payrolls in the month of March.
Fire Department:
Police Chief Klein informed the council of the retirement of members Troy Vagle and Mike Vagle and the addition of three new members. The department responded to seven calls in the month of March and one earlier in the day.
Motion by Councilor Peterson to approve new members; Mitchell Ryden, Blair Younggren and Carson Thorstensein. The motion was seconded by Councilor Waller and carried unanimously.
Airport:
Airport Manager Jeremy Seng reported that the circle around the light at the airport needs to be painted this summer. He and Utility Superintendent, Dan Larson were confident the summer help could assist with this project. The airport was offered a grant by MNDOT to replace the fuel payment system to one that is chip card compatible. The grant has been accepted by Sugden and does not require a dollar amount match.
Utility & Parks Department Report:
Utility Superintendent Dan Larson asked the council to purchase paint for the pool. He explained that this is typically done every-other year and runs about $2,000. The council agreed and gave him the go-ahead to purchase the paint. Larson reported that, on the earliest date ever, the crew had finished sweeping the streets for the spring. Maintenance worker, Caleb Pinnock, was in Kennedy on this day to sweep for them (an agreement between the two cities, Hallock bills Kennedy for the service). Mayor Treumer and the council noted their appreciate for a job well done. Larson updated the council on the progress at the playground. The crew had attempted to work on the project earlier in the day, but discovered frost. They have everything on-site to resume construction as soon as conditions allow. The crew has also repaired a few broken water lines, started patching potholes and built a safety cage around the cover of the south lift station.
Larson reported to the council that he spoke with Horizon Pool engineer, Bob LaDuke, about the kiddie pool. Mr. LaDuke referred Larson to an alternate pool engineer as the project bordered on a scale Horizon Pool couldn’t handle. Larson will continue to work with the new contact and report back to the council next month.
Police Report:
Police Chief Docken reported to the council that he signed the city up for a deer hunt for next year. The council asked that he order the requested street signs this month. Docken updated the council on progress made to get blighted homes torn down this summer.
New Business:
Zoning Permit 2021-02; B. & J. Kraska
Motion by Councilor Peterson to approve Zoning Permit 2021-02, construction of an addition. The motion was seconded by Councilor Larson and carried unanimously.
Zoning Permit 2021-03; R. Skoglund
Motion by Councilor Waller to approve Zoning Permit 2021-03, construction of a garage. The motion was seconded by Councilor Totleben and carried unanimously.
Zoning Permit 2021-04; B. Gonzalez
Motion by Councilor Larson to approve Zoning Permit 2021-04, construction of an addition. The motion was seconded by Councilor Waller and carried unanimously.
Other Business/Announcements
Past-Due Utilities
Administrator Sugden reported to the council that there are currently over $18,000 in significantly past-due utility accounts. Due to the COVID-19 emergency, utility providers have been urged not to charge late fees or disconnect utilities. The city office has sent several past-due notices to delinquent accounts and most have not been responded to. Sugden asked the council to allow for shut-offs for significantly past-due accounts after the distribution of another letter and no response. She noted that the city doesn’t prefer to disconnect accounts, but, on occasion, it is necessary to receive payment.
Upcoming Meetings
The next council meeting will be on Monday, May 3, 2021 at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall.
Council Roundtable & Public Comment
None
Adjournment
There being no further business, Councilor Waller moved to adjourn the Regular Meeting of the Hallock City Council on April 5, 2021. The motion was seconded by Councilor Larson and carried unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 6:51 p.m.
Dave Treumer, Mayor
Aimee Sugden, City Administrator
Minutes prepared by Aimee Sugden
(May 19, 2021)
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