Minutes for Regular Board Meeting of April 12, 2016
Present: Supervisors, Tina McKeever, Roger McKeever, Bruce Martinson; Clerk, Doug Schwecke; Treasurer, Alicia Kangas; Fire Chief, Phil Bonin; Asst. Clerk Gale Ring, Commissioner Ginny Storlie, and residents of Schroeder.
The meeting was called to order by T. McKeever at 7:05PM.
Charlie Muggley commented on limiting public comment to the end of the meeting. He felt it wasn’t right to have the public follow rules when he felt the Supervisors weren’t following rules on expenditures and donations.
B. Martinson moved to approve the agenda with the addition of MAT short-course report under Other Business. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried.
B.Martinson moved to approve the minutes of March 7, 2016 as presented. R. McKeever seconded. Minutes approved. R. McKeever moved to approve the minutes of the Board of Canvass of March 8, 2016 as presented. B. Martinson seconded. Motion carried.
Treasurer’s Report: Receipts for March totaled $33,110.31, which included the first half taconite production tax payment. Disbursements totaled $26,464.25, including a check to Birch Grove School for $10,000 which was put on hold for the time being. The ending checkbook balance as of March 31, 2016 was $70,340.66. R. McKeever moved to approve the treasurer’s report. B. Martinson seconded. Treasurer’s Report was approved.
B. Martinson moved to approve checks #3749-3774, with check # 3761 being voided, in the amount of $6,433.84. R. McKeever seconded. Motion passed.
Lodging tax debit slips for Jan-$1,031.06 and Feb-$982.26 were approved and signed.
Commissioner Storlie: Ginny Storlie introduced Dave Rannetsberger of MN Power, to speak on the renewal process for air quality permit for Tac Harbor. They are currently meeting all the requirements, but the permit needs to renewed every 5 years. Even with the power plant shutting down in Sept., the renewed permit could be very valuable in attracting new business for the site. T. McKeever moved to have Schroeder Township send a letter of support for renewal of the air quality permit for Tac Harbor Energy Center. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried. Access to a water source for our Fire Dept after the plant shutdown was discussed. The Supervisors will meet at Tac Harbor Energy Center on April 29 at 9 AM, to discuss the possibility of leasing their maintenance building for township use after the shutdown. Ginny then reported that she attended an area transportation meeting last week, gave a legislative update, a meeting with Cleveland Cliffs, and county transportation plans for this year. The Comprehensive Trail Guide Plan has been approved and is on the county website. Availability of child care for working parents is becoming a real problem in the county, especially on the west-end. A resolution against Twin Metals sulfide mining failed to pass at the last Commissioner’s meeting.
B.Martinson moved to nominate Tina McKeever as Chair. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried. T. McKeever nominated Bruce Martinson as Vice-chair. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried. T. McKeever moved to keep managerial positions the same at; Road&Bridge-R. McKeever, Cemetery-B. Martinson, Recreation-T. McKeever. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried. T. McKeever moved to keep Cook County News-Herald as the official newspaper. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried. R. McKeever moved to keep the posting places the same; Town Hall, Post Office, Temperance Traders and our website, www.schroedertownship.com. B. Martinson seconded. Motion carried. B. Martinson moved to designate Grand Marais State Bank as our official depository. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried. Authority to expend funds was tabled and the clerk was asked to check with other townships on their policy. B. Martinson stated he would abstain from voting on anything dealing with Birch Grove School as his wife now teaches there.
Fire and Rescue: Phil reported that the meeting last night was well attended. They sized 6 members for new gear at a cost of $1,300/suit. Will be working on radio training this month. No calls, but false alarms are still a problem. Still working on changes to Fire Relief. Clerk report that past municipal contributions to the relief fund were $3,400 in 2011 and $8,085 in 2005. R. McKeever moved to approve up to $800 on shelving for the fire hall and clerk’s office. B. Martinson seconded. Motion carried.
Road and Bridge: We received confirmation that we qualified for two grants to help resurface Schroeder-Tote and Baraga Roads from the State Park Road Account Fund. It was reported that Hansen’s would be crushing at the Sugarloaf pit this year. Bill would check into getting a stockpile built up for Sugarloaf Rd. Rick Anderson turned over the completed file for the road committee. After discussion T. McKeever moved to reconvene the road committee consisting of Rick Anderson, Charlie Muggley, Bruce Martinson, and Bill McKeever. B. Martinson seconded. Motion carried. Meeting times will be posted when times are decided on.
Cemetery: T. McKeever moved to approve the changes to the cemetery rules as presented at the annual meeting and tonight. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried. Clerk will post the changes.
Recreation: We were approved for a grant of $930 for a bench and paint from the Great Place Project. It will be used in conjunction with sprucing up the area around the Town Hall. Gale Ring will coordinate volunteer efforts. The leaning ball park fence will be looked at when conditions dry up this summer. After discussion it was decided to rent a port-a-let for Harbor Park but not for the ball field. Karl Crawford will be asked to put the dock in at Dyer’s Lake. B. Martinson has been working on a committee to have a viewfinder installed at Tac Harbor Safe Harbor. All the funds are in place but in order to get insurance coverage the Township would need to take ownership. Insurance cost would be $17/year. R. McKeever moved to accept ownership of the viewfinder and cover the insurance cost. B. Martinson seconded. Motion carried.
Maintenance: Moving a router upstairs increased wi-fi coverage in the hall. Clerk was given permission to install it permanently. Discussed redoing the railings on the outside steps. Decided to get estimates on replacing the steps and railings as they might not be up to code. Tina will check on signage for on the building, as well as with MNDOT and the County for signage for the on roads.
Other Business: Changes to the Storefront Loan Program were discussed, including changing the name to Schroeder Business Development Revolving Fund and broadening the qualifying uses of the funds. T. McKeever moved to approve the changes decided on. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried. Clerk will make the approved changes to the guidelines and application and foreword them to IRRRB for their approval. Clerk will notify Charles Van Doren that he will have to reapply after we receive approval from IRRRB. The status of the check to Birch Grove School was discussed. They will need it by June to avoid statutory operating debt. A Lutsen Supervisor is seeking to get a consolidated legal opinion on this subject. No action was taken on the check. T. McKeever moved to require any questions to and replies from legal counsel be in written form. B. Martinson seconded. Motion carried. Changes to the Schroeder Area Land Use Plan were discussed. Cathy Johnson has volunteered to help. A work session will be planned for June and the date will be published when finalized. Tina and Alicia reported on their attendance at the MAT shortcourses in March. A lot of information is always given out. They shared some handouts as well. Lake/Cook Assn. of Townships meeting will be on May 4, at 6 PM, at Tofte.
Correspondence: Sent– government survey
Received- health planning workshop on April 26 at Sawtooth Mt. Clinic, emails from Birch Grove School & Birch Grove Foundation, Polymet meeting on April 19
Public comments: Llyod Gellinger brought emails to and replies from Beaver Bay, Silver Bay and Finland concerning whether or not Birch Grove School has contacted them for support as reported in Feb. They had not received any requests. Charlie Muggley suggested the Board have written policy on authority to expend funds. Clerk was asked to contact other townships about their policies. Also if legality of donations is in doubt, why is the Board working so hard to find a way to give them. Rick Anderson brought up if the timeline for donation requests needs to be changed. Also if the Township is still interested in getting out of TSSSD. Our representatives to TSSSD were asked to check it out and report back in May. Alicia Kangas commented on an informal survey she conducted at the MAT shortcourse on how much other townships donate to non-profits. Most were in the $200 – $1000 range.
T.McKeever moved to adjourn. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried. Adjourned at 10:16 PM.
Doug Schwecke, Clerk
Minutes of Board of Appeals & Equalization on April 12, 2016
Present: Supervisors, Tina McKeever, Roger McKeever, Bruce Martinson; Clerk, Doug Schwecke; Treasurer, Betty Schultz and Todd Smith from Cook County Assessor’s Office
The meeting was called to order by T. McKeever at 6:00PM.
County Assessor Betty Schultz introduced Asst. Assessor Todd Smith and gave a brief overview of their job and the purpose of the Board of Appeals & Equalization. The total assessed value of property of all types in Schroeder Township decreased by $503,500 in 2015 to a value on Jan. 2, 2016 of $96,035,200. Each year 1/5 of the properties in the county must be viewed and reassessed. This year the work will be on the west end of the county, so we will all likely be seeing them this summer. Property specifics, infrastructure, building size, condition, age, and sale prices all are looked at to arrive at a value.
No one appeared before the Board with any concerns, but some had contacted the Assessors prior to tonight. Betty Schultz asked that the changes they presented be approved. (attached) R. McKeever moved to approve changes presented by the Assessor. B. Martinson seconded. Motion carried unanimously.
There being on further business before the Board, T. McKeever moved to adjourn. R. McKeever seconded. Motion Carried. Adjourned at 7:01 PM.
Doug Schwecke, Clerk