The Taconite Capital of the World

City of Mountain Iron, Minnesota



Meeting Minutes for December 04, 2006

MOUNTAIN IRON CITY COUNCIL

DECEMBER 4, 2006

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; Larry Nanti, Recreation Director; Don Kleinschmidt, Director of Public Works; Rod Flannigan, City Engineer (entering at 6:39 p.m.)and Rick Feiro, Sergeant.

The Mayor welcomed the audience and the television viewing audience to the meeting.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Nelson that the consent agenda be approved as follows:

Add the following item to the agenda:

V. 1. Fire Department Gear and Lockers Quotes

Approve the minutes of the October 30, 2006, Committee-of-the-Whole meeting as submitted.

Approve the minutes of the November 20, 2006, 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 November 16-30, 2006, totaling $151,938.77, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes).

To authorize the payments of the bills and payroll for the period November 16-30, 2006, totaling $274,436.48, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes).

The motion carried on the following roll call vote: Prebeg, yes; Nelson, yes; Irish, yes; Roskoski, no; and Skalko, yes.

No one spoke during the public forum.

The Mayor reported the final inspection was completed on the Library elevator on November 30, 2006, and the elevator was now available for residents to use.

The Mayor updated the Council and residents on the Christmas Lighting Project. He stated that this was a two year project that the Council approved and has now been completed. The Mayor thanked the City Staff involved in implementing the lighting project. He stated that the entire town now has Christmas lights.

The Mayor updated the Council regarding the recent article on newspaper regarding the P & H MinePro Project. He said that the article stated that they were relocating in Virginia. He felt that this was premature, as they are negotiating with the City of Virginia and they are currently negotiating with the City of Mountain Iron also. The Mayor said that there is no signed development agreement as of this date. The Mayor said they would like to keep P & H MinePro in Mountain Iron to retain the good paying jobs and increase the tax base in the City.

Councilor Roskoski asked the City Administrator if he had attended the meeting in Hibbing regarding the Fiber Optics Study. The City Administrator said that he had attended the meeting. He said that they outlined the structure, designated the insurance, and set the next meeting. Councilor Roskoski said that he heard that if there is not enough local support/customers that the City would have to subsidize the project. Councilor Nelson said that this was mentioned at the meeting when the idea was initially proposed. The Mayor said that they are currently looking into the project. Councilor Nelson said that initially he was not in favor of the fiber optics project, but after watching a show on fiber optics on television, he feels that this may be an important project for the City to consider. 

The Recreation Director stated that the City Administrator obtained information from the Minnesota Conservation Corps and Staff wanted to know if the Council was interested in applying for the program. Councilor Roskoski said that the City should put our own program together and hire our own people to have more control. The Recreation Director said that the program is based out of Grand Rapids. Councilor Prebeg asked the Director of Public Works if the City Crew could do this type of work. The Director of Public Works said that he would apply for the program and then seek additional information on the workers if the City receives approval. 

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Skalko to direct City Staff to apply for the Minnesota Conservation Program. And, if selected, investigate where the work crews are from, what they can do, and what equipment they supply. The motion carried on the following roll call vote: Nelson, yes; Irish, yes; Roskoski, no; Prebeg, yes; and Skalko, yes.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Skalko to authorize the Fire Department to purchase 20 sets of turn out gear from Metro Fire at the quoted price of $1,786.00 per fire fighter because of the quality of the equipment, to authorize the purchase of 20 lockers from Wirecrafters LLC at their quoted price of $6,936.00, and to purchase two industrial wash machines at an approximate cost of $2,600 per machine with the funds coming from the $34,200 FEMA grant and the balance from the City funds. The motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

The Council reviewed the 2007 preliminary budget. The Mayor noted that the Council will be voting on the 2007 budget on December 18, 2006. 

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Irish to direct the Planning and Zoning Commission to review the definitions of the Variance and Conditional Use Permit and how these two permits are to be applied as defined in the City�s Zoning Ordinance. A report to the City Council will be provided for, as to the outcome of this permit review. Staff will also research as to when the policy of a fee being charged for residential types of construction planning review was implemented. Also, what is supposed to be included in said plan and what is the cost of the fee based on. And, when all of this information is compiled then it would be forwarded to the City Council. The motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

The Mayor advised the Council that he received a notice from the Festival of Trees Committee advising that there would be a thank you reception held on Monday, December 11, 2006 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at the Virginia Fire Hall. The Mayor said that the Committee raised over $40,000 during their event.

During the open discussion, Councilor Prebeg recommended that the Newly Elected Council members attend the League of Minnesota Cities Conference for Newly Elected Officials held in January in Grand Rapids. The Mayor said that they this would be put on the next City Council agenda.

Also during the open discussion, Councilor Roskoski pointed out that the City should try to purchase merchandise from all of the vendors located in Mountain Iron, when possible.

Also during the open discussion, Councilor Roskoski had questions regarding the Lineman Position. He said that when the previous Foreman retired and the Temporary Foreman position was filled, the Council should decide what to do with the Foreman position in the future. Councilor Roskoski said that the current Temporary Foreman is currently a Lineman. The Director of Public Works stated that the Temporary Foreman has not tested for his Journeyman Lineman designation. Councilor Prebeg said that the Council agreed to post for the Lineman position and take applications. The Personnel Committee has reviewed the applications and agreed to give interviews. Councilor Roskoski requested that this be on the December 18, 2006 agenda.

At 7:28 p.m., it was moved by Roskoski and supported by Skalko to recess the regular meeting, take a ten minute recess, and go into a closed session to discuss contract negotiations. The motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

At 7:41 p.m., the Council went into the closed session with all Councilors and Louis Russo, Consultant, present.

At 8:17 p.m., Councilor Irish left the meeting.

The Council discussed the management employee contracts.

At 8:48 p.m., it was moved by Nelson and supported by Roskoski that the meeting be adjourned. The motion carried.

COMMUNICATIONS

Messiah Lutheran Church, forwarding an invitation to view an unusual exhibit of local art at the church from Dec. 3rd through Jan. 3rd.

East Range Academy, forwarding information on the new charter school and an invitation to attend the first public information event and enrollment kickoff on Monday, November 27, 2006.

Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities, information regarding the 2007 CGMC legislative agenda.

Days Inn, asking the City for assistance to host the first annual Christmas Party for under privileged children in the area on December 14, 2006.

Festival of Trees Committee, forwarding an invitation to a “Thank You” reception on December 11, 2006 at the Virginia Fire Hall.

Recent News

Campground Reservations

Contact Us

[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]