Deer River City Council Minutes


    a) Regular Meeting Minutes



I. Call to order 6:00 P.M.


II. Present Mayor Geving, Council members Chris Reed, Pat Richards, Barb Serfling, and Wade Reed. Also, present City Administrator Mark Box, Public Works Foreman Jason Lundquist, Police Chief Tammy Perry, Fire Chief Steve Jurvelin, Movement Director Heather Schjenken and reporter Louise McGregor.


III. Pledge


IV. Minutes Motion by Pat, second by Wade to approve the minutes of the April 10th, meeting as amended. MCU Motion by Pat, second by Barb to approve the minutes of the April 11th, working session as amended. MCU


V. Bills After discussion, motion by Chris, second by Pat to approve bills in the amount of $39,701.72 and inter-fund loans to cover negative fund balances. MCU


VI. City Attorney Did not attend


VII. Movement Director Heather Schjenken gave her annual update to the City Council. Heather reported that the program has had great results and it has a new focus starting this year. They will be focusing on tobacco and marijuana use prevention. The message: it’s not ok to use tobacco or marijuana, needs to be communicating with the kids at a very young age. The Movement will be participating in the D.A.R.E. graduation again this year and will continue to be a community partner. The Council thanked Heather for the update.


VIII. City Engineer Did not attend


IX. Fire Department Steve reported on 16 fire calls for the month. Most of the calls were grass fires and they had 3 structure incidents and 1 vehicle accident.


The department is getting bids on the generator and should have them soon. Steve said there will need to be a cement slab for the generator to sit on. The area where the generator is going to be placed is between the fire hall and the fire garage. The area is about 14x20 and the slab needed for the generator pad is approximately half that size. Council asked Steve to get pricing both options.


Steve is also getting bids on the heating system for the truck bays in the fire hall and also bids to replace the boards that are around the top of the fire hall on the outside.


Steve asked the Council if they would still approve a raise for the firefighters. During the budget session, the Council tentatively approved an increase. After discussion, motion by Chris, second by Pat to increase the firefighters hourly pay $1.00 per hour. MCU


May 16th the department will be having a recruitment day at the fire hall. This will be in conjunction with Fire Wise, DNR, and the US Forest Service. Steve said this will be a time for people to come in and have a hands-on experience with tools and trucks. There will be a meal served and a lot of information to hand out. Everyone is welcome to attend. Motion by Chris, second by Wade to approve the Fire Department report. MCU


X. Police Department Tammy reported on 132 calls for the month.

The department toured Enbridge Energy on 4-24-17. This is the first time the police department has toured the facility.

The Vet clinic was very well attended. There were 80 vehicles many with 2 or more pets. The clinic ran longer than scheduled but overall went very well.


Tammy presented resolution 2017-15, a resolution that will set policy on classroom discrimination. Tammy explained because we have a firearms instructor we need to have this policy in order to receive continuing education credits through the BCA. Motion by Chris, second by Wade to approve resolution 2017-15. Motion approved with Pat abstaining.


Tammy introduced Chad Latvala to the Council. Chad was hired as a part-time police officer. All of Chads hiring requirements have been met and is ready to start his training with our department. Motion by Wade, second by Barb reaffirm hiring Chad Latvala as a part-time police officer. Motion carried with Pat abstaining. Motion Chris, second by Wade to approve the Police report. MCU


XI. Public Works Jason has contacted SEH about the sidewalk on 5th street SE and they will be doing a complete walk around of the whole project when the frost is out.

The drainage ditch east of 5th St NE has been cleaned. The Street sweeper is back in service and the spring projects are starting.

They are starting with their quarterly water and wastewater sampling. Jason said they are getting ready to start the spring discharge from the wastewater pond.

Quality Flow will be doing the spring maintenance on all of the lift stations soon.

The department personnel will be attending a couple of training starting on 4-25-17.

Steve will be taking his water license test in May.

Chris asked if a pole or barricade could be put up along 5th St Se where the new sidewalk is. People are driving around the speed bumps. Jason will put something up. Motion by Chris, second by Wade to approve the public works report. MCU



XII. Administrator Report Mark has talked with a company that would put credit card machines into city hall and there would be no charge to the city. The company would collect a processing fee that the customer would have to agree to pay. Mark said it would take up to two days for the money to reach our accounts.The downside to this will be if someone were to charge a large amount of money in the license bureau. The State takes their money out daily so the City would have to make up the lag in the payment. Council said to continue operations as we are.


Mark had two resolutions for the Hwy 2 project. 2017-14 was approved at the last council meeting and needed a signature and 2017-16, a resolution approving plans and ordering the advertising for bids. Motion by Wade, second by Pat to allow the Mayor and Mark to sign resolution 2017-14 and to approve and sign resolution 2017-16. MCU


Chris, Wade, and Mark went to the Capital to testify before the Senate Tax Committee on 4-20-17. Chris explained that we were invited to testify to what the impact would be to the City of Deer River if the Enbridge challenge is successful. We also met with Senator Eichorn and Representative Layman during the visit.


There will be a pre-construction meeting on May 11th for the Hwy 2 project. Mark and Bob will attend.

Mark asked if we can start the loan process with Minnesota Rural Water for the Hwy 2 project. Motion by Wade, second by Chris to allow Mark to move forward with the loan process. MCU

Project Read would like to have a book giveaway in August at Lions Park. Council was in favor of having the event.

There is a new law allowing Sunday liquor sales. If the Council wants to limit the hours of operations on Sunday off-sale hours they will need to have an ordinance. Motion by Chris, second by Wade to follow the State law in regards hours of operation. Motioned carried, 4 to 1.


Mark asked for consideration in raising the meal reimbursement amount. We are currently at 25.00 per day and limited to a dollar amount for each meal. Council asked Mark to check with other cities and see what they are reimbursing.


Motion by Wade, second by Barb to approve the bank reconciliation for March 2017. MCU


Mark asked the Council for approval to hire Richard Fieldsend for the public works position. Motion by Pat, second by Barb hire Richard Fieldsend with a start date of May 1st, 2017. MCU


Mark asked the Council if they wanted to keep the Worker Comp insurance premium agreement the same as last year. This is a no deductible option. Chris asked what the City Mod. Rate is, Mark reported it was 1.2 but it will probably go up a little because we had some claims last year. Council elected to stay with the no deductible option.


XIII. Adjournment Motion by Chris, second by Wade to adjourn. MCU. Meeting adjourned at 7:34 PM.


Respectfully submitted by, Mark Box City Administrator.


Approved by the City Council at the regular meeting on May 8th, and signed by Mayor Geving.



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