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City of Mountain Iron, Minnesota

022619 UAB Minutes

Mountain Iron Utility Advisory Board


26 February 2019

Meeting was called to order 4:00 p.m. by Chairperson Renzaglia

Members present:  Reynold Renzaglia, Sue Tuomela, Harvey Hellyer, and Bret Renzaglia.  Others present: Tim Satrang, Public Works Director, Lisa Stevens, Accounting Technician, and Bradford Bennett, Water/Wastewater Operator.  Jacob Osell arrived at 4:40pm.

Absent:  Joe Prebeg, Council Liaison

Chairperson Renzaglia introduced Bret Renzaglia one of two new members. 

Chairperson Renzaglia requested a letter of appreciation be sent to long time UAB member Bruce Peterson for his years of dedication to the City of Mountain Iron.

Moved by Chairperson Renzaglia and supported by Harvey Hellyer to approve the Consent Agenda including the 28 August 2018 minutes.  Motion carried unanimously.

Public Forum:  None



Unity Drive and Enterprise Drive South.  25 July 2018.  A length wise crack was found on Universal cast pipe.  The crack was stopped by drilling, a new section was spliced in, and water was restored.  Help of Virginia PUC to supply water to east most customers during the repair was needed. Dairy Queen and the Laurentian Clinic were out of water during this repair.  The hole was backfilled the next day.  That evening another leak was found in the same vicinity.  Another crack was found on the next stick of pipe to the east.  That repair was made Sunday. 

 Walgreens Parking Lot. 18 December 2019.   Repaired a 10-inch valve in the Walgreens parking lot.  Bolts were decaying enough to lift the packing gland and cause a leak.  New bolts and gaskets were installed.

Mineral Ave near the Recycle Center. 4 January 2019.  Because of the valve layout, and the location of the break the “original” town site was not capable of being isolated from the break area and was out of water during the time of repair.   The break area was excavated, a “crack” type break was found and repaired.  While restoring water pressure, another leak was found approximately 10 feet to the north.  A “corrosion”   type break was found and repaired.  Water was restored slowly while several volumes of water were flushed through the system.

Garden Drive North. 27-28 January 2019. Six inch ductile main crack at a service tap.  Repair clamp                        used with a ¾ inch tap.


25 January 2019 a planned outage with USS was made to upgrade the electric meter to an automatic read.  At the same time USS staff replaced a main breaker. 

5712 Mineral Ave Fuse blew to a limited amount of customers.  Replaced cut out. 

Old Business:

  • Nichols Lagoons: Reviewed photos from the fall of 2018.  Talked about security at the site. 
  • Water Treatment Facility:  Satrang reported that Allen Johnson with Benchmark, Ryan Capelle with Stantec Engineering, Ty Hebl and he had toured the Babbitt Water Treatment Facility and the Virginia Water Treatment Facility.  A discussion took place on concrete vs. steel filters.  Stantec’s structural engineers had the opinion, that an open cell cement filter would have better wall strength than steel.  Cement filters would have a significantly longer life than steel with less maintenance.    Staff has been analyzing raw water from the wells to determine a temporary way to treat the water during the construction process.  Stantec is working on a 3-D model of what new filters would look like in the existing facility.  Staff is seeking funding.  
  • Electrical Voltage conversion: Satrang has been working with Minnesota Power to review the voltage conversion.  Mapping is being worked on.
  • Transformer Storage Area/PCB project: This will continue this spring.  The MPCA was satisfied with inventorying of transformers as far as interest in PCBs. 
  • Water Line Mapping: Satrang had an example of what mapping will look like when valves appear on it.  Employees will be able to enter gps coordinates on their phone and walk within a couple feet of the valve box.  Three engineering students hired as casual labors last summer helped with collecting the data. 
  • Chairperson Renzaglia asked about the service area dispute Lake Country Power has with the City. Satrang did not have any updates to report on.   

New Business:

  • Water Supply Plan. Satrang reported he had intentions of asking for a recommendation from the board for the council approve the plan, however, the DNR requested time to review the report prior to having the city to certify it.  This report is required every ten years by the DNR. 
  • Mercury Minimization. Mountain Iron is required to have a mercury Minimization Plan.  Satrang said he, Hebl and Bennett are working on updating the plan and will be looking for a recommendation from the board to have the City Council certify it.

Other Items of Concerns:

  • Requested having the MMUA “Connector” mailed to members of the UAB
  • Request made to prepare a State wide and local electric and water rate study

A video prepared by Bennett of the CIPP lining project in the fall of 2018 was played in the Wacootah room.

Meeting Adjourned at 5:00pm

Respectfully submitted,

Lisa Stevens

Accounting Technician

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