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City of Mountain Iron, Minnesota



Meeting Minutes for November 02, 2009

MINUTES
MOUNTAIN IRON CITY COUNCIL
NOVEMBER 2, 2009

Mayor Skalko called the City Council meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. with the following members present: Joe Prebeg, Jr., Tony Zupancich, Alan Stanaway, Ed Roskoski, and Mayor Gary Skalko. Also present were: Craig J. Wainio, City Administrator; Jill M. Anderson, Municipal Services Secretary; Don Kleinschmidt, Director of Public Works; John Backman, Sergeant; and Rod Flannigan (entering at 6:36 p.m.)

The Mayor announced that he would be moving some things on the agenda to accommodate the audience members present. He said that he would make the following changes:

Public Forum: A. St. Louis County Commission Keith Nelson
B. Public Hearing on Proposed Assessments for 16th Avenue
Move: VI. Item D and E to before the Mayor’s Report

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

A. Approve the minutes of the October 19, 2009, regular meeting with the following additions: 
Public hearing additional comments:
– Dean Niska, 5485 Heather Avenue, commented that he attended the assessment public hearings for Unity Drive and he understood that he would be charged the full assessment on Unity Drive and if Heather Avenue was ever completed that his assessment would be reduced by 50%. 
– Robert Voss, 8397 Tamarack Avenue, clarified that his corner lot assessment was calculated correctly. NOTE: These comments were made when Resolution Number 46-09 was being considered and not during the public hearing.
B. 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.
C. To acknowledge the receipts for the period October 16-31, 2009, totaling $229,322.02, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes). 
D. To authorize the payments of the bills and payroll for the period October 16-31, 2009, totaling $146,074.80, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes). Note: Removing the bill for Kangas Excavating for separate consideration.

It was moved by Roskoski and seconded by Skalko to amend the minutes of the October 19, 2009, public hearing on the street assessments to include the comments made by Dean Niska and Robert Voss. The motion to adopt the amendment carried with Prebeg and Stanaway voting no. The amended motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

It was moved by Zupancich and seconded by Prebeg to authorize the payment of the bill from Kangas Excavating in the amount of $3,000.00. The motion carried on the following roll call vote: Zupanich, yes; Stanaway, yes; Roskoski, no; Prebeg, yes; and Skalko, yes.

Commissioner Nelson spoke during the public forum. He updated the Council on Saint Louis County projects within the City of Mountain Iron. He advised the Council that the County Road 7 Project would be scheduled for 2013 unless resources become available sooner.

At 6:48 p.m., Councilor Roskoski vacated his chair at the Council table and took a chair in the audience. 

At 6:48 p.m., it was moved by Zupancich and seconded by Stanaway to recess the regular meeting and open the public hearing on the proposed assessments for 16th Avenue. The motion carried with Councilor Roskoski absent.

Councilor Roskoski got up to speak at the public hearing and the Mayor strongly advised him to not speak during the public forum because he is an elected official. The Mayor stated that members of Councilor Roskoski’s family were present and could speak regarding the special assessments, and that this would be a conflict of interest to speak as an elected official at the public hearing.

Councilor Roskoski, 820 South 16th Avenue, said that he spoke with Representatives from the League of Minnesota Cities and his own legal counsel and he was advised that he could vacate his Council chair and speak as a private citizen at any time. He said that he was speaking on behalf of himself and his brother Ray Roskoski. He handed out a transcript of what he said to the Council, he challenged the proposed street assessments for 16th Avenue South by listing 12 items. A copy of the challenge is on file at the Mountain Iron City Hall. 

The Mayor addressed some of the issues raised during Councilor Roskoski’s challenge.

At 7:04 p.m., it was moved by Zupancich and seconded by Skalko to close the public hearing and reconvene the regular meeting. The motion carried with Roskoski absent.

At 7:04 p.m., Councilor Roskoski returned to his chair.

It was moved by Zupancich and seconded by Prebeg to adopt Resolution Number 51-09, approving the amendment to the development agreement with Mountain Timber Properties, LLC, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes). The motion carried unanimously.

It was moved by Prebeg and seconded by Stanaway to adopt Resolution Number 52-09, approving the transfer of the development property from Mountain Timber Properties, LLC to Mountain Timber Wood Products, LLC., (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes). The motion carried unanimously.

Councilor Roskoski re-addressed his challenge to the assessments that was distributed during the public hearing.

It was moved by Zupancich and seconded by Skalko to adopt Resolution Number 48-09, adopting the assessments for 16th Avenue, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes). It was moved by Zupancich and seconded by Skalko to direct the City Administrator to verify the front footage calculations for the Roskoski property. The amendment carried with Roskoski abstaining. The amended motion carried on the following roll call vote: Stanaway, yes; Roskoski, abstain; Prebeg, yes; Zupancich, yes; and Skalko, yes.

The Mayor addressed some issues with Councilor Roskoski distributing memorandums to the public without City Council approval. The Mayor referred to a resolution adopted on September 20, 2006 regarding this practice.

It was moved by Skalko and seconded by Zupancich to adopt Resolution Number 49-09, adopting assessment on Heather Avenue, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes), and directed the City Administrator to check the calculations on the Peterson (parcel 175-0071-01235) and Niska (parcel 175-0071-01255) assessment calculations and correct any errors with any appropriate interest. The motion carried on the following roll call vote: Roskoski, no; Prebeg, yes; Zupancich, yes; Stanaway, yes; and Skalko, yes.

At 7:44 p.m., it was moved by Zupancich and seconded by Skalko to recess the meeting. The motion carried.

At 7:49 p.m., the meeting went back into session. Councilor Prebeg was not present.

The Mayor updated the Council on the following:

– Flu Shot Clinic. He advised the public that the flu shots clinic was cancelled for lack of vaccine available. He thanked Holly Holmes, Health and Safety Board Member, for setting up the Clinic.

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

It was moved by Prebeg and seconded by Zupancich to set a Committee-of-the-Whole meeting for Tuesday, November 10, 2009 at 6:30 p.m. to discuss the 2010 Budget. The motion carried.

It was moved by Stanaway and seconded by Roskoski to grant a six month unpaid leave of absence for Laura Nieters due to injuries sustained in an accident. The motion carried.

The City Administrator updated the Council on the following:

– 2010 Budget. He advised the Council that he didn’t anticipate having the meeting so quickly. He said that he has been working on the budget, but would not have it completed to the level he would like by November 10th.
– Library Position. He advised the Council that the Library Director had been instructed to move forward with advertising for a Library Substitute position.

Councilor Roskoski questioned the City Engineer regarding a ponding problem by 5601 Oriole Avenue. The City Engineer said that Benchmark Engineering was there and staked the right-of-ways. The City Engineer stated that there currently was an issue with the driveway at 5601 Oriole Avenue not being located on the property of the owner; and the owner is currently encroaching on the property of Lake Country Power. The City Engineer advised City Staff to not repair the problem because it is not on City property.

It was moved by Skalko and seconded by Stanaway to direct City Staff to forward the outstanding administrative offenses of David Nordlund, 4902 Admiral Road, and Kery Smrekar, 9406 Maxwell Road, to the City Attorney for further legal action. The motion carried.

Liaison Reports:

– Economic Development Authority. Councilor Zupancich updated the Council on the EDA consideration of advertising and developing a new brand for the City.

It was moved by Skalko and seconded by Zupancich to adopt Resolution Number 50-09, receiving report and calling a hearing on improvements to the remaining portion of Old Highway 169, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes). The motion carried with Roskoski voting no.

It was moved by Zupancich and seconded by Stanaway to allow B.G.’s Bar and Grill to serve alcohol on December 3, 2009, at the Mountain Iron Community Center for the Edgewood Vista Christmas party. The motion carried.

The Mayor informed the Council that he had spoke to Dave and Nina Buria regarding their letter in the communications. The Mayor said that the Director of Public Works stated that he would be directing City Staff to work on the gravel roads, before freeze-up.

There was no closed meeting; there is a negotiation session scheduled for Wednesday, November 4, 2009.

At 8:12 p.m., it was moved by Skalko and seconded by Prebeg that the meeting be adjourned. The motion carried.

Submitted by:

Jill M. Anderson, CMC/MMCA
Municipal Services Secretary

www.mtniron.com

COMMUNICATIONS

1. Nina and David Buria, a request for improvements to Browns Road, Streetcar Road, and Giorgi Road.
2. Minnesota State Auditor, forwarding the Volunteer Fire Relief Association Investment report card.

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