REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING
CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS, CITY OF ALBERT LEA
Monday, August 8, 2016, 7:00 P.M.
PRESENT: Mayor Vern Rasmussen Jr., Councilors John Schulte V, Larry Baker, George Marin, Reid Olson, Larry Anderson and Al Brooks. Also present were City Manager Chad Adams, Assistant City Manager Jerry Gabrielatos and City Attorney Lee Bjorndal. ABSENT: City Clerk Shirley Slater-Schulte
Rich Chapman, 1438 Frank Hall Drive, spoke about the stop signs along the Frank Hall corridor. He opposes installation of a stop sign along the corridor and provided a brief history of the traffic calming measures made to the corridor during his time as a resident. He supports the installation of “Watch for Children” signs in the area.
Gary Hagen, 501 Albert Lea Street, enquired about what plans the Council has to keep increases, spending and taxing limited.
Sheila Schulz, 1917 South Shore Drive, presented a check on behalf of the Rotary Club for the remaining funds needed to furnish the dog park. Mayor Rasmussen thanked the Rotary for its efforts.
Ellen Kehr, 1712 Plainview Lane, spoke about the installation of a sidewalk along Margaretha from 14th to 17th. She spoke about this previously at another meeting and stated that the goal of the project is to create a safe transportation corridor for motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists. Kehr estimated that each block of sidewalk would cost $33,333.
Brett Behnke of the Shell Rock River Watershed District stated that the Watershed Board is opposed to placing the sales tax referendum for vote on the general election ballot.
Nick Ronneberg, 1123 Frank Hall Drive, spoke about installing a stop sign where a traffic fatality recently occurred. He stated that a petition has circulated requesting a three-way stop at the intersection of Frank Hall and 8th. He wanted to make Council aware that Frank Hall is currently under construction and postulated that may affect traffic. He reported that residents in the area support the installation of a stop sign and traffic calming measures. Rasmussen requested that Ronneberg present the Council with ideas. Ronnenberg responded by saying that he is gathering ideas among his neighbors. He shared the results of his own traffic study and suggested a different funding mechanism for sidewalks.
CONSENT AND APPROVAL OF AGENDA
A. Approve Minutes Of The July 25, 2016 Regular Council Meeting
B. Approve Minutes Of The July 25, 2016 Work Session
C. Licenses & Permits (See attached list.)
D. Resolution Accepting Donations Presented To The City Of Albert Lea
E. Resolution Accepting Minnesota Historic Preservation Funds Grant
F. Resolution Authorizing Satisfaction Of Mortgage – Wildman
G. Resolution Amending Broadway Ridge Grant Fund Policy
H. Resolution Amending Resolution #16-150 To Add Legal Description To The Variance For 503 Park Avenue
I. Schedule Canvass Board Meeting for August 12, 2016 At 4:30 P.M.
MOTION: Move to approve the consent agenda.
Motion made by Councilor Baker, seconded by Councilor Brooks. On roll call vote, the following councilors voted in favor of said motion: Schulte V, Baker, Marin, Olson, Anderson, Brooks and Mayor Rasmussen. Mayor Rasmussen declared the motion passed.
(See Secretary’s Original Resolutions 16-159-16-163 included with these minutes.)
PETITIONS, REQUESTS, AND COMMUNICATIONS
A. Fountain Lake Restoration Project Update – Shell Rock River Watershed District
Andy Henschel, Director of Field Operations for the Watershed, updated Council about the Fountain Lake restoration project. The Watershed recently submitted an Environmental Assessment Worksheet (EAW) to the DNR. He forecasted the next steps in the process of obtaining permits needed.
Baker asked Henschel to elaborate on the importance of fish barriers. Henschel answered that the removal of rough fish from a lake improves the water quality within the lake. Henschel added that fish barriers are not commonly used within the region and a pro-active, progressive way to enhance water quality.
Baker then asked Henschel the areas that dredging would occur first. Henschel presented the Council with a map of Fountain Lake indicating the preliminary sediment removal areas. Henschel then highlighted the Watershed’s outreach effort, manning a booth at the Freeborn County Fair. He said that the Watershed would meet with residents living in a particular area to address their concerns about dredging.
Baker requested Henschel explain what a sediment pond is. Henschel stated that the Watershed designed three ponds to hold sediment dredged from the lake. Henschel elaborated about the costs incurred to obtain the permits.
Marin asked what the Watershed plans to do with land affected by the dredging after the project is completed. Henschel said the Watershed is exploring options including selling the land, using the land as reuse material, ceding the land to the DNR or retaining it for maintenance.
B. Quarterly Budget Report
Adams displayed slides regarding the general fund revenue and expenditures for the entire city and then by department. He spoke about these and then discussed the city’s cash and investments as well as those of the Fire and Police departments.
A. Resolution 16-164 A Proposition Relating To A Local Option Sales Tax On The November 8, 2016 Special Election Ballot
Adams showed Council the language that will be placed on the ballot regarding the local option sales tax that will fund the Watershed.
Motion made by Councilor Marin, seconded by Councilor Anderson. On roll call vote, the following councilors voted in favor of said motion: Schulte V, Baker, Marin, Olson, Anderson, Brooks and Mayor Rasmussen. Mayor Rasmussen declared the motion passed.
(See Secretary’s Original Resolution 16-164 included with these minutes.)
B. Resolution 16-165 Authorizing Transfer Of Federal Aviation Administration Airport Improvement Program Non-Primary Entitlement Funds To City Of Ely, Minnesota Municipal Airport
Adams explained that the City of Albert Lea received funds from Houston County in anticipation of constructing a new Arrival/Departure building at the Albert Lea Municipal Airport. The funding expires in 2016 and because the building will not be constructed this year, the City will lose $68,302 of that funding. Ely has a large project in 2016 and has requested these funds from Albert Lea. If it is not used by Albert Lea or is not gifted to Ely, it goes back to the Federal government to be used on aviation projects nationally instead of on a project in the state.
Motion made by Councilor Marin, seconded by Councilor Brooks. On roll call vote, the following councilors voted in favor of said motion: Schulte V, Baker, Marin, Olson, Anderson, Brooks and Mayor Rasmussen. Mayor Rasmussen declared the motion passed.
(See Secretary’s Original Resolution 16-165 included with these minutes.)
A. Ordinance 201,6d Opting Out Of The Requirements Of Minnesota Statutes, Sec. 462.3593 – Temporary Family Health Care Dwellings (1st Reading)
Adams explained that the State of Minnesota recently passed a State Statute requiring municipalities to permit temporary health care dwellings unless the municipality passes an ordinance to opt out of this requirement. Several practical and legal concerns were identified by staff leading to the recommendation to opt out of this legislative action. Adams stated that the City wanted local control over these types of dwellings. To illustrate the point made by Adams, Bjorndal used examples of situations that could arise without control.
Motion made by Councilor Baker, seconded by Councilor Olson. On roll call vote, the following councilors voted in favor of said motion approving the first reading of this ordinance: Schulte V, Baker, Marin, Olson, Anderson, Brooks and Mayor Rasmussen. The second reading will be held at the August 22nd meeting.
B. Resolution 16-166 Repealing Parking Maintenance District For Downtown Albert Lea (TABLED)
Adams explained that the resolution would repeal all procedures, boundaries, and future assessments to the Parking Maintenance District in downtown Albert Lea. The City Council established this goal following the City’s Annual Retreat/Goal Setting Session. The City’s General Fund would support on-going maintenance to the downtown streets and parking lots with some likely future revenue sources being created in the next year or two. Staff recommended tabling this resolution until the August 22nd council meeting to allow for downtown properties and the general public to respond. In response to questions from Marin and Baker, Adams noted that City staff has been in touch with leadership of the Downtown Association about this issue for some time, but the group did not hold its regularly scheduled meeting in August. Marin stated support for disbanding the district.
Motion to table the resolution was made by Councilor Marin, seconded by Councilor Baker. On roll call vote, the following councilors voted in favor of said motion: Schulte V, Baker, Marin, Olson, Anderson, Brooks and Mayor Rasmussen. Mayor Rasmussen declared the motion passed.
(See Secretary’s (TABLED) Resolution 16-166 included with these minutes.)
MAYOR AND COUNCIL REPORTS
First Ward, Councilor Schulte V:
- Schulte attended an HRA meeting. The Board is seeking another member and changed its meeting time.
Second Ward, Councilor Baker:
- Announced Wind Down Wednesday and solicited volunteers for the event.
Third Ward, Councilor Marin
- No report.
Fourth Ward, Councilor Olson:
- No report.
Fifth Ward, Councilor Anderson:
- Attended the Freeborn County Fair.
Sixth Ward, Councilor Brooks:
- Attended a Port Authority meeting. After the conclusion of the meeting, the Board held a strategy session for economic development.
- Ward Items: Noted grading issues on private property and an unkempt boulevard that need to be remedied. He announced a baseball tournament.
- Reminded the public to vote the primaries. Announced the American Legion Sweet Corn & Burger Feed and the Last Wind Down Wednesday for this summer, to be held Wednesday, Aug 17th.
CITY MANAGER REPORT
- Adams stated that City has yet to receive a report from State Patrol about the traffic fatality that recently occurred.
- He asked Council what dates would be available in their schedules for the next Budget Work Session.
- Announced Community Picnics
APPROVAL OF CLAIMS
A. Resolution 16-167 Approving Claims
(1). Presentation of Claims Over $25,000
The resolution directed the Mayor and City Clerk to issue the payment of claims as presented in the Detail of Claims report. Adams highlighted the claims over $25,000.
Motion made by Councilor Baker, seconded by Councilor Anderson. On roll call vote, the following councilors voted in favor of said motion: Schulte V, Baker, Marin, Olson, Anderson, Brooks and Mayor Rasmussen. Mayor Rasmussen declared the motion passed.
(See Secretary’s Original Resolution 16-167 Include with these minutes.)
ADJOURNMENT – 8:20 P.M.
Motion made by Councilor Marin, seconded by Councilor Brooks, that there being no further business, the Council meeting adjourn until the next regular meeting of the Albert Lea City Council at 7:00 p.m., on Monday, August 22, 2016. On roll call vote, all councilors voted in favor of said motion. Mayor Rasmussen declared the motion passed and the meeting adjourned.
Mayor Vern Rasmussen Jr.
Council Secretary Pro Tem