The meeting was called to order at 7:00 pm by Mayor Rasche, with the following Council Members present Glenn Kuhnau, Zach Schumacher, Mark Haberman and Lance Baumann.
Others in attendance were Police Chief Tony Fauglid, Ambulance Director Joe Liepold, Fire Chief Chad Diemer, Carol & Jerry Wagner, Paige DeWall and Marlys Olson.
Oath Of Office
Oath of Office was recited from Andrew Rasche for Mayor 2023-2024, Mark Haberman for Council Member 2023-2026, and Lance Baumann for Council Member 2023-2026.
Approval of Agenda
Council Member Schumacher requested to add Tree Grant onto the agenda. Motion from Council Member Kuhnau for the approval of the agenda with the added Tree Grant. Seconded by Schumacher. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman, Baumann, aye: No Nays. Motion passed.
Approval of Minutes for the December 7, 2022 – Truth in Taxation and Regular Meeting
Motion made by Council Member Schumacher to approve the minutes of the Council Meeting for December 7, 2022. Seconded by Council Member Kuhnau. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman, Baumann, aye: No Nays. Motion passed.
Hanson’s 4th – Minnesota Investment Properties – Update. Received check for closing on December 28, 2022 for an amount of $27,084.50 for the sale of the 5 vacant lots to Jeremey Janssen with the Minnesota Investment Properties. Completed.
Community Center – Smoke Detectors, Fire Board, Alarm System – Update. Public Works Director not in attendance so no update given.
Doug Vanderheiden – 204 16th Street purchase for $3000 – Update. After discussion with Steve Bornhoft from the Zoning Board, he said that he can put a camper on that lot but will need a conditional use permit. He will not be able to build a shed, any build will need a building permit and/or variance with a hearing from the Zoning Board. City Council had agreed on the amount of $3000. City Clerk will send an email back to Doug to inform of this.
Payroll – Bi-weekly vs Bi-Monthly – Approve the changes in the Personnel Policy Book. Discussion on the changes made with in the policy book regarding the change of payroll. Payroll will be Monday through Sunday with checks out on Thursday. Discussed the Direct Deposit at this time, council would like to have it not say mandatory direct deposit, recommended with the option for paper check is needed. Police Chief Fauglid requested help with the transition from bi-monthly to bi-weekly. He stated that his check will be less due to his salary being split up more times than currently. He requested either cash out his vacation or hold his utility bill until the first third paycheck which would be March 30, 2023. Discussion by the council. Council agreed to hold his utility bill through the end of March with no late fees. He will pay for January through March with that check drafted on the 30th. If not paid, will need to pay late fees through the time that payments were held. Motion made by Council Member Schumacher and seconded by Council Person Kuhnau to go to Bi-Weekly payroll with theclarifications made in the personnel policy book. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman, Baumann, aye: No Nays. Motion passed. Motion made by Council Member Schumacherand seconded by Council Member Kuhnau to hold Tony Fauglid utility payments for January, February, and March with the stipulation that he will make a full payment of his utility bill after the March 30th payroll, if he does not make that payment then all late fees will be added. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman, Baumann, aye: No Nays. Motion passed.
Jackson County Check – 2006, 2011A & 2003 HLBE Final = $881,903.31 – Update. Talked with Danielle Berg and she had not had any updates with this check. The Jackson County Assessor will have to go through the archived paperwork to find the answers, but this time of year is a busy time.
Falcon Heights Vacancy – Update. With the person that we had to take the opening passing away, continued calling to fill that opening by the city office. Received the two quotes for flooring. Carpet Plus will be putting the flooring in mid-January.
Organization of the City – Meeting Dates. Presented a schedule of dates for the year 2023. Motion made by Mayor Rasche and seconded by Council Member Kuhnau. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman, Baumann, aye: No Nays. Motion passed.
Organization of the City – Appointments – Legal Services Agreement. Resolution 2023-01. Presented Appointment list with openings from the past council members to be filled. Also, discussed the closing of the lawyer’s office in Heron Lake and offering the city attorney position to Birkholz & Associates, LLC. Reviewed the Legal Services Agreement from Birkholz. Motion from Council Member Schumacher to accept the presented appointment list with the changes made. Seconded by Council Member Kuhnau. Later within the meeting, Police Chief Fauglid noticed that the legal service agreement stated, “excluding any criminal prosecution representation”. Police Chief Fauglid stated that Jackson County will do most gross felony cases. The city attorney will have all misdemeanors, traffic, most DWI’s, and petty misdemeanors. Our city attorney will also be representation for the county deputy, DNR and state patrol when within the jurisdiction of the city. Motion made by Mayor Rasche and seconded by Council Member Schumacher to amend the previous motion and table the appointment list until clarification from Birkholz & Associates in regard to the criminal prosecution representation. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman, Baumann, aye: No Nays. Motion passed. City Clerk will get clarification from Birkholz & Associates to present at next council meeting.
Organization of the City – Fee Schedule. Presented the 2022 fee schedule with some requested changes from the city office and public works. Discussion on that the Utility Deposit Interest Rates will increase from 0.2% to 4.7% in 2023. Motion made by Mayor Rasche and seconded by Council Member Kuhnau to approve the 2023 Fee Schedule – Resolution 2023-02 with the requested changes. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman, Baumann, aye: No Nays. Motion passed.
Resolution 2023-03 Donations. Received two checks from the Heron Lake BioEnergy Exchange Agent Trust. First check was for the City of Heron Lake Fire Department for $34,000.00. The second check was for the City of Heron Lake Ambulance for$20,000.00. Motion made by Mayor Rasche and seconded by Council Member Schumacher to approve Resolution 2023-03. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman, Baumann, aye: No Nays. Motion passed.
Hours of Business – City Office presented a change in the hours of the city office to 7:00 am to 4:00 pm Monday through Thursday and 7:00 am to 1:00 pm on Friday with a half hour lunch break. Currently, the hours are 8:00 am to 5:00 pm with an hour lunch break. Discussion on County Office hours, bank hours, availability for people before dropping kids off at school and before they go to work. Discussion tabled.
Direct Deposit – Mandatory. See above with the payroll – Bi-Weekly vs Bi-Monthly.
Vacation/Personal Days – Discussion on where they would like to put the 3 personal days that a full-time employee gets. QuickBooks only logs sick and vacation time in the system. We will keep separate for now.
Senior Citizen’s – Carol Wagner, President. Request from the Senior Citizen’s Club to reduce the fee from $75.00/month to $50.00/month. Carol went on to explain that they are small in numbers and are using the room less. She said that their main fundraiser is the rolls and coffee. They currently have 24 members. No further discussion.
Tree Grant – Update. Council Member Schumacher updated on the progress of the tree grant. AJ’s Tree Service is starting to take down trees that are marked for removal. City Clerk sent in an updated report to the state. Showed the expense sheet for the post hole digger from Miller Sellner to help with the planting of the trees. Council Member stated that he has trees lined up to replace the ones taken down. These will be planted in the spring. No further discussion.
Liquor Store – Bridgit Preston, Manager – Bridgit unable to make it due to having to work. Council Member Schumacher talked about the needs of the bar. Looking at getting a new POS and a new computer. The floors behind the bar are worn down – will be getting quotes to replace. Also, will need a new sink behind the bar to bring it up to code. A cheese machine will be coming soon.
Ambulance – Monthly Report – Joe Liepold, Director. Reviewed the monthly meeting minutes for the Heron Lake Ambulance. They are requesting to increase their wages to $25.00/hour. Motion made by Council Member Kuhnau and seconded by Council Member Schumacher to increase the EMT wage to $25.00/hour. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman, Baumann, aye: No Nays. Motion passed.
Fire Department – Monthly Report – Chad Diemer, Chief. Year started out good but ended bad with the recent house fire. Discussion on the water during the fire. Wondering about the Red Rock water lines with an eight-inch line going into the meter shed and two inch going from the meter to the city. Going to review the contract. Joe with PeopleService will send an email to Dominic Jones to request an increase of flow to the city. Council Member Schumacher stated that he has samples of polos, t-shirts and logo that will be brought to the next department meeting. Nick Doescher is requesting to step down as the Fire Relief Treasurer. Discussed on the need for the property owners to keep their fire hydrants cleared from the snow build up.
PeopleService – Monthly Report – Joe Liepold. Showed monthly and yearly reports. Has been helping Public Works with the snow removal.
Public Works – Falcon Heights Update, Light Covering in the Senior Citizen’s Room. John Haberman, Public Works unable to make meeting. Did leave the quotes for the replacement of tires for the CASE tractor from Graham Tire and E&K Repair. Discussion on if we needed to replace the tractor. Discussion tabled until able to talk with Public Works. He as not been able to finish the needed repairs at Falcon Heights due to the recent snow falls. Replacement of the light covering in the Senior Citizen’s room due to yellowing. Council Member Baumann stated that with different light bulbs may take the yellowing away.
Police Department – Monthly Report – Tony Fauglid, Police Chief. Reported on it being allow crime year. Has completed his training on use of force and gun shooting. Has been writing out parking tickets with the recent snow falls.
Next meeting January 24, 2023 @ 7:00 pm for all city staff. Blood Borne Pathogens, Right to Know and HAZMAT.
City Council Meeting February 1, 2023 @ 7:00 pm
Mayor Rasche moved, seconded by Council Member Kuhnau, to approve payment of claims as presented. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher and Baumann aye; no nays; Haberman abstained d/t he is a claimant. Motion carried.
Mayor Rasche moved, seconded by Council Member Schumacher, to adjourn at 8:36 PM. Vote on the motion: Rasche, Kuhnau, Schumacher, Haberman and Wagner, aye; no nays. Motion carried.