The Taconite Capital of the World

City of Mountain Iron, Minnesota

Meeting Minutes for May 21, 2012



MAY 21, 2012


Mayor Skalko called the City Council meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. with the following members present:  Joe Prebeg, Jr., Susan Tuomela, Ed Roskoski, and Mayor Gary Skalko.  Absent member included:  Tony Zupancich.  Also present were:  Craig J. Wainio, City Administrator; Jill M. Anderson, Municipal Services Secretary; Rod Flannigan, City Engineer; Michael Downs, Interim Public Works Director; John Backman, Sergeant; and Brian Lindsay, City Attorney.


It was moved by Skalko and seconded by Tuomela that the consent agenda be approved as follows:


1.         Approve the minutes of the May 7, 2012, regular meeting as submitted.


2.         Approve the minutes of the May 7, 2012, Committee-of-the-Whole Meeting with the following addition:


            Page 1, Paragraph 6. There were some discussions regarding possible ATV and snowmobile trails in the area.


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


4.         To acknowledge the receipts for the period May 1-15, 2012, totaling $164,894.78, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes).


5.         To authorize the payments of the bills and payroll for the period May 1-15, 2012, totaling $259,125.25, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes).


The motion carried on a roll call vote with Zupancich absent.


The following spoke during the public forum:


  • Ed Roskoski stated that at the April 24, 2012, Utility Advisory Board meeting there was a discussion concerning seasonal residents being charged for the full year of solid waste fees assessed through Saint Louis County.  He said that 19 Mountain Iron property owners could possibly qualify for this program.  He requested that the Council consider adopting the Saint Louis County seasonal program.  The Mayor recommended that he bring the information to the Utility Advisory Board for consideration.
  • Ed Roskoski stated that at the next Park and Recreation Board meeting on May 23, 2012, they would be discussing the Phase II Improvements for Locomotive Park.  The Mayor recommended that he attend the Park and Recreation Board meeting to present his information. 
  • Steve Hunter, Jr. said that he felt that he was speaking on behalf of the taxpayers of the City and felt that the City needs to end the embarrassing behavior of a Council member.  He asked what could be done to have this Council member removed from the Council.  The City Attorney said that the taxpayers would have control during the election process or he would have to complete some research for other procedures that may be available.  The Sergeant added that with regard to comments made about the City paying for prosecution costs, the City is obligated to pay for prosecution costs for misdemeanors and gross misdemeanor cases for all individuals charged in the City of Mountain Iron.


The Mayor reported on the following:


  • Grants.  He provided a list of grants that the City had received since 2003; there were 21 grants for a total of $5,088,500 in grant funding awarded to the City.  He thanked the City Administrator for writing all of the grants to obtain the funds.  It was noted, later in the meeting, that this amount did not include any grant funds awarded to the Fire Department and Sheriff’s Department.
  • Mountain Iron-Buhl Graduates.  He congratulated the 45 graduates.  He listed the 13 honor graduates as follows:  Peter Anderson, Allan Bekkala, Megan Christenson, Dylan Frederick, Tyler Goodrie, Chanelle Holmes, Gavin Johnson, Nelson Isaacson, Harley Orcott, Carah Pearson, Ariana Rinell, Dakotah Winans, and Jessica Yernatich.
  • Mountain Iron-Buhl Archery Team.  He said that the team qualified to attend the National Competition in Louisville, Kentucky on May 11, 2012.  He congratulated the team members and the coaches for their accomplishments.
  • Street Improvement Projects.  He updated the residents living on Bluebell and Daffodil Avenues, that the project that had started a few weeks ago with the replacement of the culverts and water valves, was now on hold waiting for the subcontractor to obtain a milling machine so the street could be overlayed.  The project should be completed the week of June 4th.
  • Condolences.  He offered condolences to the family of Terry Martinson, who was a current school board member who recently passed away.
  • Clean-up.  He reminded residents to take pride in their community and pick up any garbage that they may find along the streets in Mountain Iron. 
  • Northland Honor Flight.  Councilor Tuomela informed the Council about her Honor Flight experience on May 15, 2012, serving as a guardian.  She also said that Marianne Nanti, from Mountain Iron, was also on the flight serving as a Guardian.  She also thanked Mr. Buffetta’s Class and Mr. Parenteau’s Class for writing letters to the Veterans on the flight. 


The City Administrator reported on the following:


  • IRRRB Residential Redevelopment Programs.  The City was currently taking applications for building demolitions in the City at the City Hall. 
  • Lots for Sale.  The City still has lots available in Unity Second Addition and South Forest Grove Addition; please contact the City Hall for additional information.


It was moved by Roskoski and seconded by Prebeg to hire the following temporary summer employees as follows:



Benjamin Curry                        Guy Squillace               Cody Jones                  Jessica Yernatich Baily Knuti                            Dustin Leff                    Allan Bekkala  



Nancy Pickett                           Ashley Christy



Steven Niska                            Daniel Miller



Brian Wilson, Coordinator        Eric Drake                    Russell Carlson David Chesser

Clayton Gwash             Michael Erickson          Jason Gellerstedt          Jeffrey Tiedeman

Marcia Gellerstedt                    Jeremy Shackman


The motion carried with Zupancich absent.


The City Administrator said that the City was still looking for some applicants for coaching positions.


The Interim Public Works Director said that there was no action needed on the transformer quotes at this time.


It was moved by Prebeg and seconded by Tuomela to authorize a change order to add patching work on Rock Ridge Drive to the 2011 Street Improvement Project at an approximate cost of $11,000.  The motion carried with Zupancich absent.


It was moved by Prebeg and seconded by Tuomela to authorize City Staff to advertise for bids for the roof, window, and door replacement project at the Wastewater Treatment Plant.  The motion carried with Roskoski voting no and Zupancich absent.


It was moved by Prebeg and seconded by Tuomela to authorize City Staff to purchase up to 25 stainless steel light standards from Millerbernd at a cost not to exceed $30,000.  The motion carried on the following roll call vote:  Tuomela, yes; Roskoski, no; Prebeg, yes; Skalko, yes; and Zupancich, absent.


It was moved by Tuomela and seconded by Prebeg to approve the City of Mountain Iron Rules and Regulations for use of the yard waste site as updated on April 25, 2012, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes).  The motion carried with Zupancich absent.


It was moved by Roskoski and seconded by Prebeg to authorize City Staff to prepare a letter supporting the Capital Campaign fundraiser at the Mesabi Family YMCA.  The motion carried with Zupancich absent.


The Council reviewed the list of communications. 


The Mayor announced that filing for City offices opens May 22, 2012 and continues until June 5, 2012.


At 7:10 p.m., it was moved by Skalko and seconded by Tuomela that the meeting be adjourned.  The motion carried with Zupancich absent.


Submitted by:

Jill M. Anderson, MMC

Municipal Services Secretary





  1. Mesabi Family YMCA, forwarding a sample letter for the City to support the Capital Campaign at the Y.


  1. Range Community Coalition, an invitation to attend a town hall meeting on Wednesday, May 23, 2012, at the Mountain Iron Community Center.


  1. Earth Fest, a thank you to the City for their support of the 4th Annual Iron Range Earth Fest.

Recent News

Campground Reservations

Contact Us