The Taconite Capital of the World

City of Mountain Iron, Minnesota



Meeting Minutes for January 05, 1998

The meeting was called to order at 6:30 p.m. by Mayor Brunfelt with the following members present: Carolyn Olsen, Stephen Skogman, Joe Matanich, Curt Piri, and Mayor Mitchell Brunfelt. Also present were: Craig J. Wainio, City Administrator; Jill M. Forseen, Deputy Clerk; Don Kleinschmidt, Director of Public Works; Larry Nanti, Recreation Director; and Nick Dragisich, City Engineer.

It was moved by Matanich and supported by Piri that the consent agenda be approved as follows:

1. Add the following items to the agenda:

VII. E. 1) Communications

3. Virginia Area Chamber of Commerce, regarding a request for grant support.

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

3. Authorize the payment of the bills and payroll for the period January 1-5, 1998, totaling $121,436.38, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes).

The motion to adopt the consent agenda carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

During the Public Forum, Mr. Ted Tammaro spoke regarding his Conditional Use Permit application. He reviewed the construction material for the proposed sign and he said that the sign would be 21 feet high. Mr. Tammaro said that the land where the sign is being placed is useless and is zoned commercial. 

Mr. Ed Roskoski said that his main concern was how high the billboard sign would be and how would the sign would look. He further said that he was against the placing of the billboard sign. 

Councilor Olsen said that the Planning and Zoning Commission were borderline on the approval of the conditional use permit for Mr. Tammaro’s application to place a sign and they were concerned because the affected residents in Virginia were not notified.

Planning and Zoning Commissioner Rudlong said that the sign would not be a permanent structure and could be removed if there was further development on the surrounding land. 

Councilor Matanich said that he looked at the property where the sign was to be placed and he talked to some surrounding residents and they said that they were against the sign being placed on the property. 

The Mayor said that the issue would be tabled until the City Administrator can review the application with the City Attorney to consider whether they have met the legal requirements for the Conditional Use Permit application for the placement of the sign. The Mayor said that the City Council will act on the Conditional Use Permit at the next regular meeting with the advise of the City Attorney.

At 6:56 p.m., Mayor Brunfelt left the meeting.

At 6:57 p.m., Mayor Brunfelt returned to the meeting.

Also during the public forum, Fire Chief Tom Cvar spoke and advised the Council that the Fire Department’s tanker truck needs major repairs. He said that the Council needs to approve the repairs to the engine because of the cost exceeding the $2,500 limit for department head approval. It was the consensus of the Council to have the Fire Chief work with the City Administrator and the Director of Public Works and make a recommendation to the City Council for the next regular meeting.

Also during the public forum, Ms. Allison Wiitala spoke and inquired whether the City Administrator had gone over to the Virginia Housing and Redevelopment Authority to discuss the situation with Mountain Manor and possibly consider having the Virginia Authority run the facility. The City Administrator said that he has been over to the Virginia Housing and Redevelopment Authority often and they are reviewing the situation. The Mayor said that the only power the City Council has over the Housing and Redevelopment Authority is the power of appointment. The Mayor said that he will keep urging the Executive Director to work on the Mountain Manor situation.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Piri to appoint Councilor Carolyn Olsen as Deputy Mayor for 1998. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Matanich to re-appoint Sam Aluni as City Attorney for 1998. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported Olsen to appoint Benchmark Engineering as City Engineer for 1998. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Olsen to designate the City’s official depositories as the Mountain Iron 1st State Bank, Queen City Federal, Norwest Bank, 1st Bank, Midwest Federal, Twin City Federal, the League of Minnesota Cities 4M fund and Smith Barney for 1998. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Olsen to designate the Mesabi Daily News as official newspaper for the City of Mountain Iron for 1998. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Piri to hold the regular City Council meetings at 6:30 p.m. on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of the month for 1998. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Olsen to re-appoint Armiida “Ozzie” Rudlong to the Planning and Zoning Commission with the term expiring on December 31, 2000. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Matanich to appoint Rusty Knuti to the Planning and Zoning Commission, to fill the seat of John Lindquist, with the term expiring on December 31, 2000. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Piri to re-appoint Jeanne Schechinger and Roman Frericks to the Utility Advisory Board with the term expiring on December 31, 2000. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Matanich to re-appoint Scott McDermid to the Parks and Recreation Board with the term expiring on December 31, 2000. The motion carried.

The Mayor said that Bernard St. George was not interested in being re-appointed to the Parks and Recreation Board and he will have an appointment for the next regular meeting.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Olsen to appoint Rick Anderson to the Housing and Redevelopment Authority, to fill the seat of Pete Cerkvenik, with the term expiring on December 31, 2002. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Skogman to appoint Jon Perpich to the Housing and Redevelopment Authority, to fill the seat of Adrian VanderVoort, with the term expiring on December 31, 2002. The motion carried.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Piri to re-appoint Marly Cvar and Danielle Herzog to the Library Board with their terms expiring on December 31, 2000. The motion carried.

The City Engineer reported on the following items:

1) 16th Avenue Project – the preliminary concept plan is available for staff to review.

2) 18th Avenue Drainage problems – he spoke with the Director of Public Works and the City Administrator regarding the drainage problems.

3) Community Building – advised the Council that the architects drawing of the community building will be ready to place around town.

4) Reappointment – thanked the City Council for the appointment as City Engineer for 1998.

The Mayor directed the City Administrator to write letters to the newly appointed board and commission members advising them of meeting dates and times and to those that were not re-appointed thanking them for their years of service.

The Recreation Director advised the Council that Thursday, January 8, 1998 at 6:00 p.m. there is a Downtown Revitalization meeting and at 7:00 p.m., a Community Building Committee meeting.

The Recreation Director advised the Council that he is working with the Messiah Lutheran Church to plan a winter fun day in February.

The Mayor said that the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Representative was not available to make a presentation to the Council regarding the logging project in Parkville. The Mayor said that no action was required regarding the logging project.

It was moved by Skogman and supported by Brunfelt to approve the lease with USX Corporation for the Kinross Playground on land legally described as southeast quarter of the northeast quarter of Section 17, in Township 58 North, Range 18 West. The motion carried.

It was moved by Skogman and supported by Brunfelt to approve the lease with USX Corporation for the electrical substation, gravel stockpile, and water pumping and supply station on land legally described as northeast quarter of the southeast quarter of Section 10, Township 58 North, Range 18 West. The motion carried.

It was moved by Skogman and supported by Brunfelt to approve the lease with USX Corporation for water lines and electrical transmission lines on four (4) parcels of land legally described as: (a) northeast quarter of the southeast quarter of Section 4; (b) the north one-half of the northeast quarter of Section 9; (c) the west one-half of northwest quarter and the northeast quarter of the southwest quarter of Section 10; and (d) in the northeast quarter of the northeast quarter of Section 9, all in Township 58 North, Range 18 West. The motion carried.

It was moved by Skogman and supported by Brunfelt to adopt Resolution #98-01, declaring costs to be assessed, and ordering preparation of proposed assessments, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes). The motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

It was moved by Brunfelt and supported by Matanich to reschedule the next regular meeting to Tuesday, January 20, 1998 at 6:30 p.m. due to the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday. The motion carried.

The Council reviewed the list of communications.

Mayor Brunfelt and Councilor Matanich said that they would be attending the Range Association of Municipalities and Schools Membership meeting on January 23, 1998 in Hibbing and directed staff to register them for the meeting.

The Council discussed the request for funding assistance from the Virginia Chamber of Commerce. The Mayor said that the Virginia Chamber was requesting funding assistance in the amount of $2,000-$4,000. The Mayor said that a meeting will be set up with the City Administrator, Bill Smith, Frank Hughes, William Spang, Lee Anderson, and himself to discuss the possibility of having a joint chamber with the Cities of Mountain Iron and Virginia.

During the open discussion, Councilor Skogman asked the Mayor whether a meeting has been set with Minntac yet. The Mayor advised the Council that a meeting was tentatively set for January 15, 1998, at 9:00 a.m.

At 7:30 p.m., it was moved by Matanich and supported by Brunfelt that the meeting be adjourned. The motion carried.

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