City Council Meeting – August 6, 2019

MINUTES

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

CITY OF REDWOOD FALLS, MINNESOTA

TUESDAY, AUGUST 6, 2019

Pursuant to due call and notice thereof, a regular meeting of the Redwood Falls City Council was called to order in the Municipal Chambers on Tuesday, August 6, 2019, at 5:00 p.m.

Roll call indicated Mayor Tom Quackenbush and Council Members Matt Smith, Larry Arentson, Jim Sandgren, John T. Buckley, and Denise Kerkhoff were present constituting a quorum.

Also present were City Administrator Keith Muetzel, Director of Finance & Administrative Services Melissa Meyer, Public Works Project Coordinator Jim Doering, City Attorney Amy Busse and Council Secretary Caitlin Kodet.

A motion was made by Council Member Smith and seconded by Council Member Arentson to approve the agenda. Motion passed by unanimous vote.

A motion was made by Council Member Buckley and seconded by Council Member Kerkhoff to
approve the July 16, 2019, minutes as presented. Motion passed by unanimous vote.

A motion was made by Council Member Kerkhoff and seconded by Council Member Smith to approve the following items on the Consent Agenda.

1. Approve Therapeutic Massage Application for Kayla Rasmussen.

Motion passed by unanimous vote.

Public Utilities Superintendent Chuck Heins was present to introduce the Downtown Electric Conversion Project Phase 1- Final Pay Request.

Mr. Heins stated the final contract price for the Phase 1 Downtown Distribution Conversion project totaled $151,946.68. AEI Construction Inc. (dba Arvig) submitted all of the necessary paperwork, which DGR has signed off on and has submitted the final pay request in the amount of $7,597.33.

A motion was made by Council Member Sandgren and seconded by Council Member Arentson to approve the Downtown Electric Conversion Project Phase 1 – Final Pay Request of $7,597.33. Motion passed by unanimous vote.

Director of Finance & Administrative Services Meyer introduced the Request to Waive Water and Sanitary Sewer Charges for Elm Street Homes.

Rob and Brenda Chamberlain, owners of Elm Street Homes, LLC, were present to address the Council about water and sewer charges resulting from a water leak on their property.

Ms. Meyer thanked Mr. and Mrs. Chamberlain for their assistance with this process and explained the timeline of events leading to staff’s decision.

Ms. Meyer stated Elm Street Homes is requesting their water and sanitary sewer consumption be adjusted to average for March through June 2019 and reimbursement of fees paid to American Leak Detection in the amount of $2,500. The amount of this request is $38,196.
Ms. Meyer further stated staff recommends that Elm Street Homes be held responsible for the March 31, 2019, and April 30, 2019 utility bills and the American Leak Detection costs and repairs to their private service as is past practice. Staff also recommends crediting Elm Street homes’ utility account $17,569.94 to acknowledge the confusion with May 31, 2019, and June 30, 2019, bills caused by the incorrect meter descriptions.

Ms. Chamberlain stated she appreciated working with City staff and thanked staff for their assistance in resolving the water issues.

Mr. Chamberlain stated due to the mislabeling of the meters, approximately $10,000 was spent to repair non-urgent leaks. The leak detection services were obtained and focused on the wrong side of the park costing them more time and money.

Mr. Chamberlain further stated the water was leaking into the ground therefore not going into the sanitary sewer system during the period of high-water consumption so the above average sewer charges should be waived.

A motion was made by Council Member Buckley and seconded by Council Member Smith to reduce a portion of the sewer charges above the average usage for the months of March 2019 and April 2019 in addition to staff’s recommendations for the initial request to waive Water and Sanitary Sewer charges for Elm Street Homes. Motion passed by unanimous vote.

Public Works Project Coordinator Doering introduced Resolution No. 26 of 2019 – Authorization to Execute Work Order No. 2019-4 for Professional Services for the 2019 Sanitary and Storm Sewer Comprehensive Plan.

Mr. Doering stated Resolution No. 26 authorizes work order No. 2019-4 with Bolton and Menk, Inc. (BMI) to evaluate the sanitary sewer and storm sewer systems and provide the following for each system:

• Update paper maps and the GIS platform to reflect current systems as of August 1, 2019
• Define drainage districts
• Determine capacity of existing systems
• Identify bottlenecks in existing systems
• Define improvements needed to handle existing flow
• Define improvements needed in systems for future growth
• Help prioritize improvements to maximize impact
• Provide cost estimates for improvements in 2019 dollars

Staff recommends approval of Resolution No. 26 which will update the 1983 Comprehensive Plan and 1994 Sanitary Sewer Plan. In addition, the update will guide our utility improvements for the next 10-20 years. The creation of this plan was included in the 2019 budget. This civil utility planning process falls under the purview of the 2019 Master Agreement with BMI and designation as the City Engineer.

A motion was made by Council Member Smith and seconded by Council Member Kerkhoff to waive the reading of Resolution No. 26 of 2019 – Authorization to Execute Work Order No. 2019-4 for Professional Services for the 2019 Sanitary and Storm Sewer Comprehensive Plan. Motion passed by unanimous vote.
A motion was made by Council Member Sandgren and seconded by Council Member Buckley to approve Resolution No. 26 of 2019 – Authorization to Execute Work Order No. 2019-4 for Professional Services for the 2019 Sanitary and Storm Sewer Comprehensive Plan. Motion passed by unanimous vote.

Council Member Smith discussed a recent accident at an uncontrolled intersection in the city. Council Member Smith requested the City look into uncontrolled intersections and how they can be addressed in town to reduce the risk for accidents.

City Administrator Muetzel stated the Police Commission would evaluate the request.

Council Member Kerkhoff discussed various properties in the city that have excessive trash and weeds in the yards. These properties are in violation of current City Ordinances in regards to property maintenance.

City Administrator Muetzel reminded Council members and encouraged all community members to complete a Code Enforcement Complaint Form when they see properties that are in violation of the City’s ordinances. Complainants will remain anonymous. Once a valid complaint is received, the owner of the property is given notice to remediate the issues. If the issue is not corrected within the allotted amount of time a citation will be issued and corrective action will be taken at the expense of the property owner. Complaint forms are available at City Hall or can be submitted online through the City’s website.

Bills and Claims were presented to Council for informational purposes. No questions, comments or concerns were raised.
There being no further business, a motion was made by Council Member Sandgren and seconded by Council Member Kerkhoff to adjourn the meeting at 5:56 p.m. Motion passed by unanimous vote.