Winsted City Council Minutes

City of Winsted

City Council Meeting

Council Chambers

December 3, 2008

6:00 p.m.

 

Present:                        Mayor Steve Stotko

                                    Council Member Bonnie Quast

                                    Council Member Tom Ollig

Council Member Tom Wiemiller

Council Member Dave Mochinski

 

Staff Present:                        Brent Mareck, City Administrator

Deb Boelter, City Clerk-Treasurer

Fran Eggert, City Attorney

 

1)            Mayor Stotko called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m.

 

            a)    The Pledge of Allegiance was taken.

 

2)            Consent Agenda

 

Ollig motioned to adopt the Consent Agenda as presented.  Quast seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

                       

a)     Minutes - City Council Work Session – November 18, 2008

 

Accepted the minutes of the City Council Work Session of November 18, 2008.

 

b)     Minutes – Regular City Council Meeting – November 18, 2008

 

Accepted the minutes of the Regular City Council Meeting of November 18, 2008.

 

c)   Reschedule City Council Meeting – December 16, 2008

 

            Rescheduled the Winsted City Council meeting from December 16, 2008 from 6:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

 

d)     Vollmer Room Use – Policy Amendment

 

Approved policy amendments for the use of the Vollmer Room.

 

e)     Claims

 

Approved the Claims List for December 3, 2008 as presented.

 

3)            Public Hearings

 

            a)            Truth-in-Taxation

 

                        Mareck presented the proposed 2009 budget and tax levy for the City of Winsted.

 

Ollig asked if the proposed property tax statements that Winsted residents received indicated a 6.9% increase over the city’s 2008 tax levy.  Mareck stated yes.  Ollig asked if the City Council would adopt a zero percent (0%) increase to the city’s 2008 tax levy then the resident’s property taxes for the city would not increase.  Mareck stated yes.

 

Jack Littfin, 23967 – 240th Court, addressed the City Council regarding the increase to the assessed value of his home.  Mareck stated that if a resident has questions regarding the assessed value of their home and/or property, they should attend the Local Board of Appeal and Equalization meeting in the spring of 2009.  Mareck recommended that Littfin contact the McLeod County Assessor’s office to inquire about the increase to the assessed value of his home.

 

Mayor Stotko asked for public comment on the proposed 2009 budget and tax levy for the City of Winsted.  No public comment was received.

 

Ollig motioned to close the public hearing.  Quast seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

b)            Ordinance O-08-07 – Franchise Ordinance – Center Point Energy

                       

Mareck stated that municipalities customarily adopt franchise ordinances with utility companies, which essentially grant permission to the utility to operate in a city.  Specifically, this ordinance allows for the gas utility to use the city’s streets and right-of-way and spells out protocol for restoration of these areas.  The agreement expires after twenty (20) years, which is the reason this ordinance is being presented to the City Council (the existing ordinance has expired).

 

As with the previous ordinance, the proposed ordinance allows the city to charge a franchise fee to Center Point Energy.

            

The City Attorney, Fran Eggert, found the proposed ordinance to be in good legal form.

 

Mayor Stotko asked for public comment on the proposed franchise ordinance for a gas utility.  No public comment was received.

 

Quast motioned to adopt Ordinance O-08-07 establishing a franchise ordinance for a gas utility.  Ollig seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

Wiemiller motioned to close the public hearing.  Ollig seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

     

4)            Old Business

 

            a)            Future Use – Winsted Municipal Airport

 

Mareck stated that throughout 2008, the city has been working to develop a Master Plan for the Winsted Municipal Airport.  Surveys, analysis, open house events and meetings with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Minnesota Department of Transportation/Office of Aeronautics (MN DOT/OA) have contributed to the development of this plan. 

 

The City Council is being asked to provide a direction for the future use of the airport through the Master Plan process.

 

Mareck continued by stating that the city annually receives $150,000 in entitlement funding from the FAA as a designated National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems (NPIAS) airport.  This entitlement funding has a maximum amount of $600,000 for any one airport, with additional State and Federal contributions of “discretionary” dollars to fund larger projects.  The city is eligible to receive up to 95% funding for projects using entitlement dollars.     

 

Since its beginning, the Winsted Municipal Airport Fund has covered its operating losses through the use of General Fund dollars.  In 2002, the city sold eight (8) hangars to recover from an Airport Fund deficit.  By the end of 2008, the Airport Fund will have approximately $80,000 in a negative fund balance, which will have to be covered by the General Fund or other resources of the city.  The 2009 budget for the airport does balance and barring any increases in spending, will not face a shortfall.  

 

                        Mareck introduced Ron Roetzel and Marcus Watson, Bolton and Menk, Incorporated.

Roetzel presented the background for the airport master planning process.  Watson presented the results of the operations survey that was conducted as part of the master planning process.  Watson also provided statistics on the aviation activity, aviation forecasts and facility requirements for the Winsted Municipal Airport.

 

Roetzel presented the following airport development options for the City Council to consider:

1.     Full Build Out:            Complete a twenty (20) year full build out of the airport, including an additional cross-wind runway, land acquisition, road closure and obstruction removal.

2.     FAA Paving:  Slight relocation of the runway to the north, to allow for a paved surface, along with obstruction removal, land acquisition and one business relocation.

3.     Paving:  Pave the existing turf runway in phases over a period of years (approximately ten (10) plus years) using only federal funding.

4.     Turf Strip:  Leave the turf strip “as is.”

5.     Sell the airport.

6.     Close the airport.

  

Mareck stated that the Airport Commission unanimously recommended keeping the existing turf runway due to the grant obligations associated with the other options. 

 

Mayor Stotko asked for public comment.

 

Russ Paschke, Winsted Municipal Airport Commission member, asked Roetzel how long the FAA entitlement grant funding of $150,000 per year will be available to airports.  Roetzel stated that the new United States President, Barrack Obama, will likely adopt a resolution continuing the NPIAS funding.  Paschke stated that the Minnesota Governor, Tim Pawlenty, is considering reducing the State of Minnesota’s contribution to airport funding.  Roetzel stated that Minnesota airport organizations will lobby to continue the State’s airport funding.

 

Mochinski stated that at the November 10, 2008 Winsted Municipal Airport Commission meeting the Commission unanimously recommended that the existing runway remain turf.

 

The City Council discussed the proposed options and Ollig, Quast, and Mochinski agreed that the city should keep the runway turf with the possibility of paving it in the future.

 

Roetzel stated that if the FAA sees that the Winsted Municipal Airport is taking steps to pave the turf runway in the future, they will continue the NPIAS funding.  If the city decides to leave the runway turf, the FAA will likely discontinue the NPIAS funding.

 

Mayor Stotko stated that he would like to have city staff find a buyer for the Winsted Municipal airport.  Mayor Stotko stated that he does not believe that the existing City Council members and/or any future City Council members should be burdened with finding funding sources to continue operations at the airport.

 

Quast asked Roetzel if airport regulations would be different for someone who owns the airport privately.  Roetzel stated yes.  The private owner would not be eligible for FAA and MN DOT/OA funding and there would be different regulations regarding safety zones.  Roetzel also stated that the city would be required to reimburse the FAA and MN DOT/OA for some of the NPIAS funding that they have used to make improvements at the airport.

 

Ollig asked if the City Council would decide to approve option two (2), would the City Council have the option to decide in the future that they do not want to pave the runway.  Roetzel stated yes.

 

Ollig also asked that if the City Council does decide not to pave the runway in the future, will the airport lose its NPIAS funding.  Roetzel stated yes.

 

Mochinski motioned to adopt option number two (2) for the Winsted Municipal Airport which includes a slight relocation of the runway to the north, to allow for a paved surface, along with obstruction removal, land acquisition and one (1) business relocation.  Ollig seconded.  Motion carried 4-1.  Mayor Stotko opposed.

 

Mareck asked Roetzel what steps will be taken next.  Roetzel stated that Bolton and Menk, Incorporated will complete the Winsted Municipal Airport’s Master Plan with the goal of option two (2) and update the Airport Layout Plan (ALP) to accommodate option two (2).  Roetzel and Watson will also identify possible additional funding options.

 

5)            New Business

 

a)              2009 Improvements – Winsted Municipal Airport

 

Mareck stated that the City Council previously approved a Capital Improvement Program (CIP) for the Winsted Municipal Airport.  The CIP included reconstruction and drainage improvements for the existing taxi-way system.  The existing taxi-ways are deteriorating due to poor drainage and the overall age of the pavement (thirty (30) plus years). 

Mareck stated that the estimated project cost for the taxi-way improvements is $305,000, with $289,750 being covered through an entitlement grant from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).  The city’s local match for the proposed improvement project would be $15,250.  The local match would be funded via improvement fee dollars collected from hangar owners.

 

Mareck stated that the Winsted Municipal Airport Commission unanimously recommended that the City Council approve the project, with the local match being funded from hanger owner improvement fees.  If the City Council would approve the proposed taxi-way improvement project, the authorization of the plans and specifications should be conditioned on the verification of available federal funding.

 

Mareck presented a memo from Bolton and Menk, Incorporated, giving a background, project justification and scope, and the proposed schedule and funding of the taxi-way improvement project.

 

Wiemiller asked Mareck how successful the city has been in collecting the $200 airport improvement fee from the Winsted Municipal Airport hangar owners.  Mareck stated that only two (2) or less hangar owners still have to pay the 2008 fee.

 

Mareck stated that he believes that if the hangar owners see that the city is spending the improvement fee on improvements that benefit the airport and them, they will continue to pay the $200 improvement fee.

 

Mareck stated that the 2008 and 2009 improvement fee will be used to fund the local match for the 2009 taxi-way improvement project.

 

Mochinski motioned to authorize Bolton and Menk, Incorporated to prepare plans and specifications for the 2009 Airport Improvement Project.  Wiemiller seconded.  Motion carried 4-1.  Mayor Stotko opposed.

 

b)              Winsted West Industrial Park – Clay Montgomery

 

Mareck stated that in the fall of 2006, Sam and Clay Montgomery received approval for a preliminary plat for a forty (40) acre commercial/industrial development known as Winsted West Industrial Park.  The plat provided lots for highway commercial development along County

Road 1 and County Road 5, and industrial development on the balance of the property.  This preliminary plat has yet to progress to the final plat stage of the city’s development process. The Winsted Zoning Ordinance provides a two (2) year window to have a preliminary plat adopted as a final plat.  If the preliminary plat does not receive final plat approval, the preliminary plat becomes null and void and any future development of the property must begin with a new preliminary plat process.

 

Mareck stated that Clay Montgomery is requesting that the City Council extend the period to obtain final plat approval to September of 2009.  The request is based on items relating to the development of the property and the passing of his father (co-applicant Sam Montgomery).

 

The City Council has granted similar requests in the past, namely for the Grass Lake Farms Second (2nd) Addition.  The applicant has requested a one (1) year extension, which does not appear to be an excessive request. 

 

Mareck presented a letter from Clay Montgomery, dated November 14, 2008, requesting an extension to the preliminary plat approval.

 

Quast motioned to grant an extension of the preliminary plat approval for the Winsted West Industrial Park until September of 2009.  Mochinski seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

            c)            Outdoor Storage of Recreational Vehicles and Similar Equipment – Ordinance Amendment

                       

Mareck stated that from time to time, the city receives complaints about the number of vehicles or recreational equipment parked on a property.  The city has explained to these residents that the number of vehicles or how they are situated on a property is not a violation of city code. The only restriction is that a vehicle must be registered and operable.  

 

Recently, the city was involved with a property owner that had over a dozen (12) plus vehicles situated on their property.  Adjacent property owners asked the city to address the number of vehicles with the property owner.  In the end, the property owner agreed to limit the number of vehicles on this property to those being able to fit on a hard surface.

 

Mareck stated that he is bringing this item to the City Council’s attention to consider whether or not an amendment to the blight ordinance should be created that would address this type of occurrence in the future.    

 

Mareck stated that there are municipalities that have adopted some type of regulation in this area, with the most common language being similar to the following:

 

“No more than four (4) vehicles or similar devices may be parked or stored anywhere outside a home. All vehicles must be owned by the residents of the dwelling (excluding occasional guests).  Vehicles or similar devices parked in the front yard area must be on a paved or gravel (not dirt) surface.”

 

Mareck presented a “Motor Vehicle Ordinance Information” handout from the City of Bloomington, Minnesota.  The handout provides residents with the City of Bloomington’s ordinance regulations when it comes to parking and storing vehicles on residential property.

 

Ollig asked if the proposed vehicle parking and storing regulations would be for residential properties only.  Mareck stated yes.

 

Wiemiller motioned to schedule a public hearing for January 6, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. to consider an ordinance amendment that would regulate the outdoor storage of recreational vehicles and similar equipment.  Ollig seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

            d)            Peddlers, Solicitors and Transient Merchants – Ordinance Amendment

                       

Mareck stated that members of the community have requested that the City Council consider an ordinance amendment that would restrict peddler, solicitor and transient merchant activities.  The proposed language (listed below) would restrict these activities from occurring on the below mentioned streets during the specified events. 

 

No peddler, solicitor or transient merchant shall conduct business in any of the following manners:

 

“On properties adjacent to 6th Street North and South, 1st Street North and South, Main Avenue, Baker Avenue, Linden Avenue, McLeod Avenue, Industrial Drive, and Industrial Lane from Thursday through Sunday during the following events:  Winsted Summer Festival, Winsted Winter Festival, Winstock and Higher Ground.”

 

Mareck stated that the City Attorney, Fran Eggert, reviewed the ordinance amendment and found it to be in good order.

 

Quast stated that she would like to add language that includes “any community event.”  Eggert stated that the ordinance would have to define what is meant by “community event.” 

 

Wiemiller asked if an event can be added to the list of events in the future.  Mareck stated yes, the city would hold another public hearing to amend the ordinance.

 

Ollig motioned to schedule a public hearing for January 6, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. to consider an ordinance amendment that would restrict dates, times and locations for peddlers, solicitors and transient merchants.  Quast seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

6)            Department Report

           

a)              Building Inspector

Rob Beckfeld, Metro West Inspection Services, Incorporated reported on the following:

Ø     Building permit applications are still limited.  The city is receiving mainly reroofing and residing building permit applications.

Ø     Commercial projects - Ridgeview Medical Clinic and St. Mary’s Care Center remodeling.  They will likely be finaled in spring, 2009.

Ø     Tetra Pak warehouse addition.

Ø     Rental housing inspections.

Ø     Historic City Hall – second floor apartment has been finaled out.

 

7)            Open Forum

 

a)              Winsted Volunteer Fire Department – Outside Storage Shed

 

Jim Koch, Winsted Volunteer Fire Department, addressed the City Council on behalf of the Fire Department.  The Fire Department requested approval to install an outside storage shed on the city property adjacent to the fire department.  The Fire Department has applied for a building permit and it has been approved.

 

Koch presented a site plan indicating the location of the shed on the property.  Koch stated that the storage shed would be a 12 feet by 20 feet shed and it will have siding that matches the siding on the fire department.  It will be anchored with four (4) anchors.  The cost of the storage shed is less than $4,000.

 

Ollig motioned to approve the installation of a 12 feet by 20 feet storage shed by the Winsted Volunteer Fire Department on city property as presented in the site plan.  Quast seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

8)            Announcements

 

a)              Future Land Use Planning Meeting

 

Mareck stated that on December 10, 2008 at 6:00 p.m. in the Vollmer Room, the city would have the first joint meeting to prepare a future land use plan for the City of Winsted.  Mareck stated that the meeting participants will include the Winsted City Council and Planning Commission, Winsted Township Supervisors, and Township property owners who have property located adjacent to the City of Winsted.

 

            b)            Winsted Winter Festival – Saturday, December 6, 2008

 

Mayor Stotko encouraged residents to purchase Winsted Winter Festival buttons and attend the event on Saturday, December 6, 2008.

 

9)            Adjournment

 

Quast motioned to adjourn.  Wiemiller seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

                                     

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

Deborah R. Boelter

City Clerk-Treasurer

City of Winsted

City Council Work Session

Conference Room – Lewis Room

December 3, 2008

5:00 p.m.

 

Present:                        Mayor Steve Stotko

                                    Council Member Tom Ollig           

                                    Council Member Bonnie Quast

                                    Council Member Tom Wiemiller

                                    Council Member Dave Mochinski

 

Staff Present:                        Brent Mareck, City Administrator

                                    Deb Boelter, City Clerk-Treasurer

                                   

                                                                                   

I.            Call To Order

 

Mayor Stotko called the meeting to order at 5:00 p.m.

 

II.            Street Management Plan

 

The city’s engineer Jake Saulsbury, Bolton and Menk, Incorporated was in attendance at the work session.

 

Saulsbury presented the City Council with information on a proposed Pavement Management Plan.

 

Mareck asked Saulsbury to explain what information the proposed Pavement Management Plan would provide the city in addition to the Street Inventory that was completed by Short Elliott Hendrickson, Incorporated (S.E.H.).  Saulsbury explained that the Pavement Management Plan would provide a schedule for street improvements, the cost for each improvement and possible funding options.  Mayor Stotko asked Saulsbury if there were any grants available for street improvements.  Saulsbury stated that as part of the Pavement Management Plan, Bolton and Menk, Incorporated would research additional grant and funding options.

 

Saulsbury recommended that if the city is going to consider completing a street reconstruction, they may want to evaluate the condition of the water, sewer and sanitary sewer systems in the area of the street reconstruction.

 

The City Council asked Saulsbury to prepare a proposal for the cost to prepare a Pavement Management Plan.  They also requested a separate proposal for evaluating the water, sewer and sanitary sewer systems.

 

Ollig stated that a Pavement Management Plan would be a helpful tool for the City Council to use for future planning and budgeting.

 

III.            Storm Water Utility

 

            Saulsbury presented a Storm Water Utility Fees survey of surrounding communities.

 

IV.            Street Improvements – Federal Stimulus Package

 

V.            City Hall Update

 

            Mareck gave update on the lake bank wash out.

           

VI.            Updates

 

            Mareck gave updates on the following items:

1.              The proposed citizen’s survey.

2.              A copy of the proposed informational flyer on the Winsted Police Department.  Ollig recommended that the flyer contain more statistical information regarding the need for police protection services – drug issues, domestic violence, medical calls and other pertinent information.

 

3.              The proposal from A.T. & T. to install an antenna on the city’s water tower.

 

4.              Winsted Lake Watershed Association’s funding request for the treatment of curly leaf pondweed in Winsted Lake.

 

5.              Presented the winners of the city’s Community Service awards and the Employee of the Year award.

 

6.              The status of 163 Main Avenue West.

 

VII.            Adjourn

 

Ollig motioned to adjourn.  Quast seconded.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

 

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

Deborah R. Boelter

City Clerk-Treasurer


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