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November 18, 2018

2/16/2018 12:56:00 PM
Shafer City Council promotes supervisor from within, discusses sewer treatment plant's future capacity

Shafer City Council met February 5 for a regular meeting.  All members were present with the exception of City Finance Advisor Richard Hill.  

The council quickly moved unanimously to consent agenda.  Next, the council voted again unanimously to promote Dan Cooper to maintenance supervisor.  Cooper will be promoted after passing a drug test and will be on a six month probation period.  

The council then heard from Michael Holt who owns property along Gunflint Way. Holt was asking permission from the council to build a storage unit on his property. Holt would like to build a 200 unit storage facility that would include four buildings.  The property is zoned agricultural and Holt said he would seek to have it re-zoned commercial.  Holt told the council he has gotten bids for the project and wanted to guage the interest or opposition with the council before proceeding any further.  

Mayor Dan Vogel told Holt he could envision some pushback from residents of Shafer Terrace who would see the units out their windows.  The council agreed that Holt should file the correct paperwork before any more discussion.
In unfinished business, the council briefly discussed the meeting times for the parks commission.  The commission could have scheduling issues in the future but has agreed to still hold the same amount of meetings per month, just the possibility of different nights. No actionwas taken.

In the engineer’s report, city engineer Jon Herdegen told the council that Shafer was overdue for a water system evaluation. Herdegen told the council Shafer was operating at 92 percent of capacity and would exceed capacity in 2023 (estimated).  That would be equal to 35 new homes.

Herdegen said it was inevitable capacity would run out, thus an evaluation would be pertinent.  Herdegen submitted three phases proposed by MSA Engineering.  Phase one includes the evaluation. The cost of phase one is $3,750.  

Phase two includes a collection system inventory and upgrade recommendations. Cost of phase two is $3,575.  

Herdegen presented four more phases that include designing, alternatives, and a final report. All phases would cost the city $26,100 in all.  Herdegen told the council if Shafer doesn’t comply with the MPCA, it could be forced to connect to the joint powers sewer treatment group, to the west.

Mayor Vogel asked if adding an aerator would help and Herdegen told him it would help with one quarter of the total sewage and electricity and cost of an aerator would have to be factored in as well.  

Herdegen told the council at the very least he would like to see them order phase one. That would give the city a better idea of where they stand for the future.  After being asked if there were state or federal funds available for the study, Herdegen told the council Shafer was number 170 on the list of priority cities.  

Vogel then made a motion to proceed with phase one which passed unanimously.

The council was then told there is a developer interested in Shafer Oaks. Shafer Oaks is between Redwing Avenue and Regal Avenue.  The developer is interested in building detached townhomes.  They would need a planned unit development agreement with Shafer because the old one has expired.   Herdegen added that some of the infrastructure would have to be fixed as well.  Herdegen told the council a feasibility study needs to be done and the developer could pay for it.

Lastly, public works maintenance worker Cooper told the council he has heard the new city truck is expected to be delivered  the second week of March.

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