The mayor called upon the county appraisers to address the audience and Mitchell spoke about the recent sales ratio trends that saw a 55% ratio for commercial sales in 2001 for the city.
From the audience, Tom Middendorf and Jim Hemker, representing Community Care, came forward to speak about this parcel, 54-32099-010, and the fact that their value for 2002 had climbed up to $274,000 from the current $224,500. Hemker spoke about the lack of profit for the non-profit group and his attempts to seek a special tax class for like type properties throughout the state, but no legislator had carried a bill forward to date, after dying in committees in past years. He also distributed copies of profit/loss statements and the county staff agreed to take them under advisement.
Members of the council also inquired of the county staff the alternatives to placing a value on similar properties and Mitchell responded by saying these various appraisals were possible:
- cost method - currently used by county
Since there were no true comparisons in the close vicinity to measure the sales and income methods, he stated that only option was to use the cost method.
After deliberating whether to keep the meeting open for up to 20 days, as allowed by law, The mayor suggested that the council make a decision tonight. As a result, Heidgerken introduced a motion to reduce the value of Community Care from $274,000 to the current level of $224,500. The motion was seconded by Boelter and by a voice vote, the motion carried.
With no other party coming forth to appeal their values, the meeting was adjourned at 7:20 P.M. on a motion by Thelen, s/Boelter, and adopted unanimously.
Special Meeting Minutes Tuesday, April 16, 2002
A special meeting of the Freeport City Council was convened at 7:30 P.M. with Mayor Rodney Atkinson presiding. Also in attendance were councilors John Thelen, Greg Boelter, Bud Heidgerken and Dave Hunbert.
Staff persons Joel Dasher, Maintenance Supervisor, and Acting City Clerk Joe Heinen were also present.
The principal purpose of the meeting was for staff to seek approval of certain items that had been delayed or set aside at last week's session, after research or replies from outside parties had been received.
Dasher commented on the need to perform basic maintenance on the John Deere tractor and he reported that Heartland Equipment would conduct a 141 point inspection for the standard price of $215.00 Humbert stated that he preferred to have this type of service done at a local dealer, although Dasher remained skeptical that any money could be saved by a non-brand dealer and coupled with the fact that this implement dealer seemed to harbor some bad feelings towards the city. In the end, Humbert stated that he would visit with the Case dealer to see what his feelings were towards servicing the John Deere and if acceptable, he would inform Dasher of the best course of action.
Dasher also commented on the visit he and the mayor had taken to the firm of CCC, in an attempt to receive a quote on spraying on a truck liner, due to the heavy rust in the bed body. Since some members assumed this job was performed last year, Heidgerken moved to accept the bid of $550 to have CCC install the cover material. Boelter seconded the motion and with all voting aye, the motion carried.
Loren's Spraying Service of Albany had presented a proposal to Dasher that laid out several options, with regard to spraying weeds, in specified areas of town. Those options included a general herbicide application for $378.00, adding a broadleaf product for an additional $160.00 and a fertilizer application for $140.00. After noting that the proposal did not include the softball fields, Heidgerken moved, s/Boelter, to secure the services of Loren's Spraying in the amount of $378.00, for the detailed areas. By unanimous vote, the motion passed.
The clerk stated that he had now received a written proposal from H&H Contracting for conducting the maintenance to the water tower, after viewing only the previous year's costs at the last session. After a brief study of their contract that would clean the inside of the tower without draining the structure for $1,100.00, Thelen moved to approve this contract, s/Humbert. All voted in the affirmative.
Dasher stated that he had visited with the local MNDOT crew about the ditch status south of I-94 and they confirmed with him that they would be cleaning the ditch out in the coming weeks.
He also revealed to all present that Quality Flow Systems had installed the phone system in the wastewater lift stations, which would alert the city when a backup of the system was prevalent. All that was needed now was the phone hard line to the stations and the clerk stated that he had ordered the south side installation by contacting Albany Mutual Telephone. This prompted Thelen to move that both stations should have hand-held phones installed inside the boxes so that in case of an emergency, these phones could be used for 911 purposes. Boelter seconded the motion and without dissent, the motion was deemed to be adopted.
Fritz Hoeschen appeared at 8:05 P.M. to explain the various options relating to the city's insurance coverage and confirmed that the council was already covered under the workers compensation policy. After a lengthy discussion, it was felt that the EDA Board should be covered and Hoeschen emphasized that a new resolution would need to be adopted be the council. The clerk stated that he would prepare such a document for the next meeting and future adoption at that time.
Although the revised contract for building inspector services was not returned, the clerk stated that he had met with Dan Marthaler and a verbal agreement to certain changes was agreed with him. This led to the need to secure some used office equipment for the land use administration and situate these items in the extreme southwest corner of the council chambers. Consent was granted to the clerk to search for used equipment in both Greenwald and Sauk Centre, at dealers located at these sites.
The matter of resolving the easement issues with Franklin Sign Company was brought forward so that some course of action could be pursued. Rather than meeting with the Franklin group immediately, the mayor suggested that some of the council members meet first with City Attorney Bill Meyer to bring him up to date on the options since he just recently returned from the south and his input might be of great value at this stage.
The clerk introduced a copy of Resolution No. 2000-3-28, adopted on March 28, 2000, that last adjusted the license and permit fee schedule for the city and was also a part of the City Code, identified under Appendix I of that document. Since these fees lacked the recent state building code fees enacted and it apparently was not consistent with the latest rate adjustment of the sewer and water fees, it was felt that a revised similar resolution be updated and introduced for adoption at the next regular meeting. By consent, the council agreed that the clerk should make the needed changes.
A request from Viola Zwach, 107 3rd Street NE, to have the city install street barricades along the west and east portion of 3rd Street, between 3rd and 4th Avenues on Saturday, May 4th, was introduced by the clerk. He explained that this petition was phoned in due to a planned auction that date and the feeling was that this blocking off of the street from 9 AM to 4:30 PM was prudent. By consent, the council directed the clerk to instruct the Public Works Superintendent to erect the barricades on the date requested and notify the adjoining residents of the pending auction and possible inconvenience.
Once again the clerk passed along a request for joint participation by the city in repairing a street curb/gutter deterioration area abutting the Roman Meyer property. All agreed it was proper for the street commission to inspect the area in question and report their findings and suggestions at the next meeting.
A prepared copy of a notice to hire a seasonal recreation director for the summer program was passed about to the members to see if this advertisement was acceptable for publication. Authorization to publish and have Greg Boelter interview the candidates who have filed during the week of May 6-10 so that a potential hire may be conducted at the May 14th meeting.
After receiving a complaint about the speeding of vehicles along County Road 11, south of the I-94, the mayor recommended that the existing speed zone be petitioned for movement some 600 feet south, by requesting this relocation of the Stearns County Highway Department. Consensus was unanimous to have the clerk make the necessary contact via a written memo to that agency.
Now that the last lot in Welle's Country Acres is scheduled for sale, it was also the feeling of the members to have contractor Jim Notch remove the advertising sign in that subdivision and store the dismantled lumber on a secure site on city property. By uniform agreement, this matter was approved for the clerk to make arrangements with Notch for its removal.
With no further business to come before the group, Thelen moved for adjournment at 8:55 P.M., s/Boelter, and all voted in the affirmative.