The Taconite Capital of the World

City of Mountain Iron, Minnesota



Meeting Minutes for August 01, 2005

MOUNTAIN IRON CITY COUNCIL

AUGUST 1, 2005

Mayor Skalko called the City Council meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. with the following members present: Joe Prebeg, Jr., Allen Nelson, Dale Irish, Ed Roskoski, and Mayor Gary Skalko. Also present were: Craig J. Wainio, City Administrator; Jill M. Forseen, Municipal Services Secretary; Don Kleinschmidt, Director of Public Works; Rod Flannigan, City Engineer; Tom Cvar, Fire Chief; and Steve Norvitch, Assistant Fire Chief.

The Mayor welcomed everyone to the meeting.

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Irish that the consent agenda be approved as follows:

Add the following items to the agenda:

IV. A. 4. Matt Niskanen Recognition 

VI. F. Audit Report Recommendation

Approve the minutes of the July 18, 2005, City Council meeting as submitted.

That the communications be accepted, placed on file, and those requiring further action by the City Council be acted upon during their proper sequence on the agenda.

To acknowledge the receipts for the period July 15-31, 2005, totaling $373,259.20, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes).

To authorize the payments of the bills and payroll for the period July 15-31, 2005, totaling $201,795.43, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes).

The motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

No one spoke during the public forum.

During the Mayor�s report, the Mayor commented on the tragic accidental deaths of four people from the Cook area. He expressed his sympathies and thoughts and prayers to the families of the victims.

The Mayor commented on the progress that has been made with the rental units at the Mountain Manor Complex. He said that two years ago there were 17 vacant units out of the 40 available. The Mayor said that the age limitations were lowered and there are now nine vacant units. 

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Prebeg to appoint Bruce Peterson, 5441 Mineral Avenue, Mountain Iron to fill the unexpired term of Jeanne Schechinger, with the term expiring on December 31, 2006. The motion carried.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Prebeg to maintain all “publicly owned” lands within the City of Mountain Iron which need to be cut would be mowed by the City Crew on a regular basis. City Staff making the final determination on which lands would be mowed would be the Director of Parks and Recreation and the Director of Public Works. Mayor Skalko amended the motion to include obtaining a legal opinion on the liability issues of mowing on County, State, or Federal land with the City Attorney. Councilor Prebeg supported the amendment. The amended motion carried with Roskoski voting no.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Prebeg that if an event, ad, etc. is given to City Staff after the agenda has been prepared which requires a cost to the City and needs to be acted upon at our upcoming meeting because of a time deadline, the Mayor will have the right to add it on to the agenda for a Council vote. Also, if an event should occur, like one of our high school teams going to regions, state, etc. and their next game played will be before our upcoming Council meeting, the Mayor shall have the right to authorize the cost of a radio broadcast and/or newspaper advertisement. After further discussion, Mayor Skalko amended his motion to include all Councilors instead of just the Mayor. Councilor Prebeg supported the amendment. The amended motion carried with Irish and Roskoski voting no.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Irish that the City of Mountain Iron congratulates Matt Niskanen for being selected in the first round, 28th overall pick, by the Dallas Stars in the 2005 NHL draft. The City expresses continued success to Mr. Niskanen as he continues to pursue his dream. The motion carried.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Prebeg to approve the Conditional Use Permit for Dan and Crystal Yernatich, 8750 Unity Drive, Mountain Iron, parcel code 175-0070-01484, to construct an accessory building that is 1,920 square feet. The motion carried.

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Irish to approve a Variance for Charles Newberg, 5740 Mesabi Avenue, Mountain Iron, parcel code 175-0010-01850 to construct an accessory building closer to the lot line than is allowed by the zoning ordinance. The motion carried.

Councilor Roskoski questioned the City Administrator regarding the power outage on July 27, 2005. He stated that the resident who had contacted him said that he was having trouble reporting the power fluctuations and outage using the emergency number. City Staff said that they would contact Minnesota Power to see if they were having problems with their emergency number.

It was moved by Nelson and supported by Prebeg to authorize City Staff to purchase 12 transformers from Resco at their low quoted price of $5,628.00. The motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

Councilor Roskoski questioned the Director of Public Works regarding the relocation of the brush hauling area. The Director of Public Works stated that the recycling bins had been relocated, but all of the signage had not yet been posted. He further stated that the yard waste site would be moved to the new site shortly.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Nelson to authorize City Staff to call for quotes on painting the locomotive in Locomotive Park with an alternate bid for the painting of the bull dozer. And further, to have Councilor Roskoski work with the Recreation Director and the City Engineer to include some additional language in the specifications. The motion carried.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Skalko to authorize City Staff to block the streets as outlined on the map, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes) for the Merritt Days Celebration on August 12 and 13, 2005. The motion carried.

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Nelson to accept the recommendation of the Mountain Iron Volunteer Fire Department and hire the following people to the department contingent on them passing a physical examination:

Jeremy Waldron

Brandon Muck

William Copeland

Lee Gams

Richard Sather-with the stipulation that he move into the 10 minute response area

within 90 days of the City Council approval of hiring.

The motion carried.

The Fire Chief advised the Council that he spoke with the City Administrator and he requested that the City turn over a retired sheriff�s department four-wheel drive when one becomes available to replace their van.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Skalko to authorize the fire department to seeks quotes on a potential changes for the 2001 fire truck. The motion carried.

Councilor Nelson questioned the Fire Chief regarding some concerns regarding the mutual aid agreement with the City of Virginia. 

At 7:30 p.m., Councilor Roskoski left the meeting.

At 7:32 p.m., Councilor Roskoski returned to the meeting.

The City Council requested an evaluation of the costs for the Virginia fire runs and a comparison over the previous years. Councilor Nelson expressed concern with the mutual aid agreement being overused and the costs exceeding the budget.

It was moved by Irish and supported by Skalko to accept the low bid of V & S Consultant for the Ann�s Acres Water Building and Tank Demolition Project in the amount of $21,710 with the expenditure being paid from the capital outlay fund. The motion carried on the following roll call vote: Irish, yes; Roskoski, yes; Prebeg, no; Nelson, yes; and Skalko, yes.

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Nelson to adopt Resolution Number 17-04, accepting work on the street improvement projects, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes) contingent on the City receiving a deduction for the materials not used in the North Court area. The motion carried on the following roll call vote: Roskoski, no; Prebeg, yes; Nelson, yes; Irish, no; and Skalko, yes.

Councilor Roskoski questioned the City Administrator regarding the legality on the State Bonding Bill Resolution. The City Administrator said that the City Attorney said that the revote procedure was legal. Councilor Irish requested that the City Attorney submit his answer to the Council in writing regarding the issue for future reference. Councilor Prebeg felt that this was an unnecessary expenditure to request the City Attorney to write a letter when the Council can ask him questions at the meetings that he attends. The Council took no further action regarding the matter.

At 7:50 p.m., Councilor Prebeg left the meeting.

At 7:52 p.m., Councilor Prebeg returned to the meeting.

It was moved by Irish and supported by Roskoski motion to Resolution Number 19-05, setting hearing on vacation, until the Council can study the issue further. After further discussion, Councilor Irish withdrew his motion. 

It was moved by Nelson and supported by Prebeg to adopt Resolution Number 19-05, setting hearing on vacation, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes). The motion carried with Councilor Roskoski voting no.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Irish that the following street sign policy be adopted:

All requests for wanted or needed signage will come to the City Council.

Said request will then be forwarded to the Street and Alley Committee for review.

The Street and Alley Committee will return the request to the City Council with a recommendation for further action. 

The motion failed with Prebeg, Nelson and Skalko voting no.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Prebeg to allow anyone to make a request regarding signage with City Staff and the Sheriff�s Department would make a determination whether the sign is needed or not. Mayor Skalko amended the motion to include notifying the Council of any sign changes. Councilor Prebeg supported the amendment. The amended motion carried with Councilor Roskoski voting no.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Irish for capital value inventory purposes, as suggested by the auditor and for fire and theft insurance purposes, that an inventory of individual items with a replacement valuation of $100 or more be implemented. This would be for the fire department, the water department, the wastewater department, electric department, parks and recreation department, law enforcement department, street department, and buildings with the inventories being completed by December 31, 2005, so that the figures could be compiled and ready for the 2006 audit. The motion failed with Prebeg, Nelson and Skalko voting no.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Irish to start doing some planning to upgrade Spring Park Road into a better gravel type of road. That Benchmark Engineering would do preliminary engineering for road contours, culverts, ditching, roadway width, quantities of materials needed similar to Heather Avenue. After further discussion, Councilor Roskoski withdrew his motion.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Irish to direct the City Engineer to complete a cost estimate to improve the drainage and surface of Spring Park Road. The motion failed with Prebeg, Nelson and Skalko voting no.

At 8:56 p.m., it was moved by Nelson and supported by Prebeg that the meeting be adjourned. The motion carried with Councilor Roskoski voting no.

COMMUNICATIONS

Northland Consulting Engineers, information regarding the exterior cracked masonry wall near the entrance to the City Hall building.

Virginia Regional Medical Center Foundation, a thank you for the contribution.

Minnesota Association of Small Cities, forwarding the July 25, 2004 update.

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