SCHROEDER TOWNSHIP

      Minutes for Regular Board Meeting of Feb. 10, 2015

Present: Supervisors, Tina McKeever, Roger McKeever, Deb Johnson; Clerk, Doug Schwecke; Treasurer, Alicia Kangas; Fire Chief, Phil Bonin, and residents of Schroeder.

The meeting was called to order by T. McKeever at 7:00PM.

  1. McKeever moved to approve the minutes of Jan. 13, 2015. D. Johnson seconded. Minutes approved.

Treasurer’s Report: Receipts for Jan. totaled $2,632.58. Disbursements totaled $5,345.56. The ending checkbook balance as of Jan. 31, 2015 was $45,702.93. R. McKeever moved to approve the treasurer’s report. D. Johnson seconded. Treasurer’s Report was approved. Treasurer recommended replacing monies into savings and a CD which have been taken out over the last several years. The current checkbook balance would support this move. Action tabled until budget was decided.

  1. McKeever moved to approve checks #3466-3482 in the amount of $4,399.33. D. Johnson seconded. Motion passed.

No lodging tax debit slip this month..

Commissioner Storlie: Not present.

Caroline Wood, Executive Director of Birch Grove Foundation, gave a presentation to the Board and those present in the audience. The building is owned by Tofte Twp. and is managed by BGF in exchange for rental space. The programs are run by BGF. Birch Grove School is a separate entity also renting space in the building. They just set their 2015 budget, after switching their fiscal year from July/June to Jan/Dec to make financial reports easier to follow. They are funded by Cook County, Schroeder, Tofte, and Lutsen Townships and private donations. Their senior programs are the biggest and most used. If BGF becomes involved with managing the senior housing project going up next door they would set up a separate entity to do that and their regular programs would not be impacted.

SAHS-Linda Lamb reported that they held their finance meeting in Jan. They will know in March about their application to place CRHC on National Registry of Historic Buildings. One of the main exhibits for this year will be “Resorts: Yesterday and Today”. Discussion then turned to the legality of the Township donating money to SAHS. Several citizens voiced concerns that the Township has not been following the law concerning donations in the past. While Mn. Statute 138.053 authorizes a town to donate to a historical society, it must be a county historical society. This view was backed up by an email from MAT attorney, Kyle Hartnett, who stated his opinion was that the statute applied only to county, not local historical societies. Supervisor T. McKeever had spoken on the phone to MATIT General Counsel, Eric Hedtke, who was of the opinion that the statute applied to both county and local historical societies. Another concern was that while the voters can approve a donation it is ultimately up to the Supervisors to decide if 1) is it authorizes by statute, 2) is it for the public good and in the interest of the Town and 3) is it able to satisfy all conditions, requirement and procedures  associated with the donation. While only the voters can set the tax levy, it is up to the Board of Supervisors to decide how that money is spent, within the confines of state law. These 3 things should be documented before the donation is paid. After 45 minutes of discussion, the issue was tabled until the March meeting to allow the Board to do more research on the issue.

Fire and Rescue: Phil reported that at their meeting last night they discussed ways to keep their roster up as they are now down to 9 members. Discussed raising pay for meetings and fires as a way to help recruit new members. Phil said they were also looking into changes with the Fire Relief Assoc. T. McKeever moved to create a new capital fund, Radio Replacement Fund, to be funded annually from the General Fund. R. McKeever seconded. Motion carried.  Discussed snow plowing issue at the Fire Hall. Permission was granted for Phil to arrange to have the shower area in the Fire Hall tiled.

Road and Bridge: Bill reported lack of snow is causing ice build-up in some ditches. This could be a problem this spring. It was suggested that the Board consider developing a long term road maintenance plan. This would include inventorying roads, culverts and signage and assessing future maintenance needs. A special roads maintenance fund would be set up to handle major projects. No action was taken but the Clerk was asked to ask for volunteers at the Annual meeting to help the Board initiate this plan.

Cemetery: Nothing

Recreation: Nothing

Maintenance: Clerk will check into getting another router to enable public access of broadband at the Town Hall. Discussed producing a township newsletter 2-4 times/year to help keep the public informed on issues, in addition to the township website.

Other Business: TSSSD Board members, Charlie Muggley and Bruce Martinson, asked the Supervisors to approve or deny Tofte Township’s request that $7500 in matching funds for their new town hall sewer system be taken from TSSSD funds. The Supervisors denied that request stating that TSSSD funds were not to be used for private systems and that Schroeder Township did not use TSSSD funds when we put our system in. Clerk was asked to look for documents detailing how we could retire from TSSSD or disband it completely. The 2015 budget was discussed. Receipts for 2015 are expected to be about $129,000. Road&Bridge should be increased substantially to cover expected costs of replacing several culverts. R. McKeever moved to increase pay for firefighters. Phil asked that the Board not act on that until he has a chance check what other departments in the area are doing. Motion died due to lack of second. Following further discussion T. McKeever moved to approve the following budget for 2015: General Fund-$35,000 Road&Bridge-$35,000 Cemetery-$2,000 Recreation-$6,000 Fire Dept-$19,000 (includes $4,000 truck loan payment) Rescue Squad-$10,800 Fire Relief-$8,000 Radio Replacement-$1,000 for a Total of $116,800. D. Johnson seconded. Motion carried.  Bruce Martinson presented a request from Timberwolves Sportsman’s Club for $1,000 to brush Gasco Rd up to 600 Rd. Also read a letter from Tofte asking for $1,500 for the July 4 celebration and fireworks. Discussed moving most of the housekeeping items more to the beginning of the Annual meeting. Anyone wanting something placed on the agenda should contact the clerk.

Correspondence: Sent– various year-end reports, letters to county highway dept., SAHS, Timberwolves Snowmobile Club

                        Received- MAT calendars, gravel pit permit approval, BGF newsletter, soil composting, MBA

  1. McKeever moved to adjourn. D. Johnson seconded. Motion carried.

Meeting was adjourned at 10:40

Respectfully submitted,


Doug Schwecke, Clerk