The Taconite Capital of the World

City of Mountain Iron, Minnesota



Meeting Minutes for September 06, 2005

MOUNTAIN IRON CITY COUNCIL

SEPTEMBER 6, 2005

Mayor Skalko called the City Council meeting to order at 6:32 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; Larry Nanti, Director of Parks and Recreation; and Rod Flannigan, City Engineer (entering at 6:35 p.m.).

The Mayor commended the entire Council on the new procedures followed at the last meeting and he reminded the Council the he will continue to implement the procedures of “Roberts Rules of Order” as long as he is Mayor.

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. 2. Library-Request for Payment

Approve the minutes of the August 15, 2005, City Council meeting with the following addition:

Page 3, add an additional paragraph at the end, “It was the consensus of the Council to have someone file an official complaint regarding the P & H MinePro issue.”

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 August 16-31, 2005, totaling $541,059.79, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes).

To authorize the payments of the bills and payroll for the period August 16-31, 2005, totaling $257,888.30, (a list is attached and made a part of these minutes).

The motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

At 6:37 p.m., it was moved by Prebeg and supported by Nelson to recess the regular meeting and open the public hearing on the street vacation in the north Parkville area. The motion carried.

Councilor Roskoski asked if the City owns the right-of-way or is leasing the property. The City Administrator said that the City does not own right-of-way and the City is not leasing the property. The Administrator further explained that the right-of-way is actually owned by the adjoining property owners. 

Gary Lupika, a representative from Great Northern Iron Ore Trust, explained to the Council and audience that the Trust would like the area vacated to control the access into the area to prevent people from illegally disposing of refuse in the area. 

At 6:51 p.m., it was moved by Prebeg and supported by Nelson to close the public hearing and reconvene the regular meeting. The motion carried.

The Mayor advised the Council that the first Labor-Management meeting was set for Tuesday, September 13, 2005. 

The Mayor also advised the Council that the Archery Range, south of South Grove on County Road 102, would be ready for the public to use in the next few days.

The Mayor requested the Council to consider developing a policy regarding parking recreational vehicles and boats on the streets and consider updating the current assessment policy for future street projects because the current policy is to subjective and confusing. The Mayor said that he would like to have a consistent uniform policy throughout the City. He said that the Administrator supplied him with several assessment policies from other cities to review.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Skalko to direct the City Administrator to forward the assessment information, supplied to the Mayor, to the rest of the Council to review. The motion carried.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Nelson to accept the resignation of Jason Goehring from the Economic Development Authority and direct the City Administrator to send him a letter thanking him for his years of service. The motion carried.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Irish to direct the City Administrator to place a request for applications to serve on the Economic Development Authority in the Mesabi Daily News, two times, with the first time being September 11, 2005, requesting for applications to be submitted until September 27, 2005, with an appointment being made at the first meeting in October. The motion carried.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Irish to authorize the City Staff to make payment number one to Lenci Enterprises Incorporated for the Library Improvement Project in the amount of $38,430.00. The motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

Councilor Roskoski questioned the Recreation Director regarding where the truck tire stand for Locomotive Park from USX Corporation was. The Recreation Director said that he contacted USX Corporation four times and he had no response back. It was the consensus of the Council to have the Recreation Director contact Dennis Hendricks, USX Corporation, to see what the status of the tire stand was.

Council Irish asked the City Administrator whether the Mountain Iron Volunteer Fire Department was awarded any additional grant funds from FEMA. The City Administrator advised the Council that the Fire Department did apply for a grant from FEMA, but the Fire Department had not been notified if they were receiving any funding.

Councilor Irish questioned the City Administrator regarding when the cleanup of the Desert Site was going to begin. The City Administrator stated that the Legislature did not appropriate the bonding funds needed for the East Mesabi Landfill for the disposal of the contaminated soil.

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Nelson to accept the recommendation of the Utility Advisory Board and implement the transition to the new yard waste location effective September 15, 2005. And further, that all users will be required to obtain a scan read gate access card from the City Hall, where they will be required to sign an acknowledgement on the list of rules, regulations, and a charge of $25.00 will be assessed if the access card is not returned by the resident to the City of Mountain Iron, by a variety of options, with 72 hours. And further, to adopt the list of rules and regulations, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes). After further discussion, Councilor Prebeg amended his motion to change item number six of the rules and regulations to a six foot limit. Councilor Nelson supported the amendment. The amended motion carried with Councilor Roskoski voting no.

The Mayor asked if the City was going to be placing lights at the new recycling site. The Director of Public Works said that flood lights would be installed in the area soon.

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Skalko to authorize the preparations of specifications and bids for a 2006 garbage truck for use in the refuse and recycling department. The motion carried with Councilor Irish and Roskoski voting no.

Councilor Roskoski questioned the Director of Public Works regarding the demolition of the home at 5498 Highway 7. He asked if there was an inspection completed of the sanitary sewer prior to the demolition. The Director of Public Works said that the sanitary sewer was sealed with cement and the basement was punched full of holes.

Councilor Roskoski asked the Director of Public Works whether the City was going to complete the sidewalk repairs and brushing behind 5738 Mineral Avenue for the Mesabi Trail. The Director of Public Works said that he recalled the motion saying that the concrete was to be swept. Councilor Roskoski said that the original motion was very specific regarding the work to complete on the project. The Director of Public Works said that he would review the motion.

Councilor Roskoski also questioned the Director of Public Works regarding the Diamond Lane cul-de-sac regarding a ponding problem being corrected so the water would run northeast. The Director of Public Works said that there is such a small amount of water there and if the City tries to correct the problem a bigger problem could be created. It was the consensus of the Council that there would not be any corrective work completed on Diamond Lane. 

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Irish to direct City Staff to contact the resident on Diamond Lane, who originally brought the ponding concern forward, and advise him that there was no simple repair to the problem. The motion carried.

The Director of Parks and Recreation reported that the Parks and Recreation Board would be meeting on Wednesday, September 28, 2005 at 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center to discuss the future of Wolf Park.

It was moved by Nelson and supported by Irish to authorize payment request number two, the final payment to Jola and Sopp Excavating for the Waterline installation in the amount of $1,956.35. The motion carried unanimously on a roll call vote.

The Council discussed the Locomotive Park Painting Projects. The City Engineer said that the dozer had lead paint on it, so it was pulled from the bid. The Engineer stated that one quote was received for $32,075 to paint the locomotive. The Mayor said that the Council could consider possibly budgeting for the project in 2006 and consider rebidding the project in the Spring of 2006. The City Engineer recommended budgeting around $20,000 in 2006 for the project.

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Irish to authorize KLM Engineering, Inc. to proceed with the warranty work on the 400,000 gallon hydropilliar and the 1,000,000 gallon ground storage reservoir. The motion carried.

It was moved by Nelson and supported by Prebeg to authorize City Staff to solicit bids to perform the storm sewer tie-in with the City of Virginia located adjacent to Plaza 53 along Mountain Iron Drive and the tie-in of the waterline with the old Ann�s Acres water system. The motion carried with Councilor Roskoski voting no.

Councilor Roskoski said that he was contacted by several of his neighbors, Barb Fivecoate, Steve Marcella, John Rappuchi, and few of his closer neighbors, regarding the whistle blowing from the trains. Councilor Roskoski requested the City Engineer to put together the information that he had regarding the regulations for the train whistle blowing and the contact information. Councilor Irish stated that there is a possible blight violation with regard to the whistle blowing. Councilor Irish also was looking for information regarding laws regulating how long a train can block a street, required signals, and the location of the whistle. 

Councilor Nelson, Liaison for the Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z), informed the Council that regarding the Norri Conditional Use Permit, that Mr. Norri had changed his setback to five feet and had obtained a ten foot easement from the adjacent property owner, Jerry Kujala. Councilor Nelson also said that the P & Z was questioning whether the City Council had approved of the covenants for the Mashkenode Lake area. 

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Irish that all items placed on the City Council meeting agenda, by anyone, be accompanied by necessary and complete backup information from now on. After further discussion, Councilor Roskoski amended the motion to have the City Council member or Staff member that added an additional item to the agenda after the agenda has been distributed that the Council member or Staff member would be responsible for supplying the additional information to the Council prior to the meeting. Councilor Irish would not support the amendment. After further discussion, Councilor Roskoski amended the motion again to direct City Staff to supply the additional information to the City Council prior to the meeting. Councilor Irish supported the amendment. The amended motion carried.

At 8:02 p.m., Councilor Roskoski left the meeting.

It was moved by Nelson and supported by Prebeg to adopt Resolution Number 26-05, Charitable Gambling, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes). The motion carried with Councilor Roskoski absent.

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Nelson to adopt Resolution Number 27-05, setting a hearing on proposed special assessments.

At 8:04 p.m., Councilor Roskoski returned to the meeting. 

The motion failed with Mayor Skalko, Councilor Irish and Councilor Roskoski voting no.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Irish to direct the City Administrator to prepare the proposed assessments by calculating for each individual street with the cost per foot for each property owner. The motion carried with Councilor Prebeg and Nelson voting no.

It was moved by Nelson and supported by Prebeg to adopt Resolution Number 28-05, vacating streets in Parkville Second Addition, (a copy is attached and made a part of these minutes). The motion carried with Councilor Roskoski voting no.

It was moved by Skalko and supported by Irish to approve the following change orders for the Mountain Iron Library Improvement Project:

General abatement for asbestos removal $ 500.00

Davis Contracting for foundation tuck pointing and water proofing $3,300.00

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

It was moved by Prebeg and supported by Skalko to authorize the Special Event Permit for the Mesabi Family YMCA for the annual Black Cat Run on October 15, 2005. The motion carried.

The Director of Public Works stated that he would contact law enforcement officials regarding the parking issues on Unity Drive for the event on October 15, 2005.

It was moved by Irish and supported by Roskoski to authorize the sale of 20 Firefly K personal alert safety systems to the Aurora Fire Department for $25.00 each. The motion carried.

It was moved by Nelson and supported by Prebeg to authorize City Staff to erect some type of gate or posts at the ends of the railroad right-of-way on the east side of Nichols Avenue and on the west side of Falcon Avenue to reduce the amount of motorized traffic. The motion carried with Councilor Irish and Roskoski voting no.

It was the consensus of the Council to have the Federal Enhancement Grant Workshop on the September 19, 2005, City Council agenda.

It was moved by Roskoski and supported by Skalko to direct the City Administrator or the Director of Public Works to contact Mr. Miller, Ely Community College, regarding grant writing with regard to fees that he would charge, availability to complete the work, and available grants for sewer system upgrades. And further, when the information is obtained that it be brought back to the City Council for further discussion. The motion carried.

Councilor Roskoski reviewed the recent land purchase from U. S. Steel Corporation. Councilor Roskoski felt that the City purchased part of the old City garbage disposal site and he questioned who would have to clean up the site.

During the open discussion, Councilor Nelson questioned whether the Fire Chief had been completing monthly reports, as requested by the Council. Councilor Nelson requested City Staff to remind the Fire Chief to prepare the reports.

Also during the open discussion, Councilor Irish questioned whether monthly overtime reports had been completed and why they were not being sent to the Council. The City Administrator stated that the procedure had been followed and the reports have been prepared and are available for review at the City Hall. Councilor Irish thought the motion stated that the reports would be mailed to the City Council, he said that he would research the motion.

At 8:53 p.m., it was moved by Nelson and supported by Prebeg that the meeting be adjourned. The motion carried.

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