By Tara Mathews
HOWARD LAKE, MN Howard Lake City Council approved an amendment to its public and private sewer use ordinance at its meeting Tuesday.
The amendment better articulates city staff’s ability to enforce repair of problem sewer lines.
“There has always been an ordinance prohibiting discharge of unpolluted water into the sewer system,” City Administrator Jennifer Nash said. “The amendment just lays out how the city will approach homeowners to repair Inflow and Infiltration (I & I) issues.”
The ordinance addresses items including right-of-entry, correction expectations, timeline for corrections, and repercussions for not following the ordinance.
“The ordinance does not require that the city act to implement an inspection program at this time,” Nash stated. “Rather it specifically states the authority to do so, and prepares for a program if, or when council directs.”
The amended ordinance allows homeowners 30 days to respond to city staff after receiving notification of a drainage issue on their property.
A $100 surcharge will be added to the homeowner’s sewer bill per month for not complying with the ordinance.
Odds and ends
In other business, the council:
• scheduled a public hearing, Tuesday, March 17 at 7 p.m. regarding an alley easement at Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted Middle School.
• heard the Howard Lake Municipal Liquor Store annual report from manager Myra Laway. In 2014, the liquor store had a net loss of $33,296.
January 2015 showed a net loss of $5,556, as well. The loss includes a yearly insurance payment of $2,700, and the store’s last payment on its oven, $3,268.
“If not for the oven payment and insurance, the liquor store would have profited,” Laway commented.
• hired two new part-time Howard Lake Police Department officers, Megan McDonald and Brittany White.
McDonald will start her position immediately, and White will begin training after McDonald.
• accepted the resignation of part-time officer Daniel Schmidt, who has been hired full-time at another police department.
• accepted a donation of $1,425 on behalf of the Howard Lake Lions Club from the Maple Lake Lions Club. The donation will be transferred to the Howard Lake Lions Club at the club’s request.