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home : news : news
May 19, 2019

4/18/2019 3:38:00 PM
North Branch City Council OK's paving, tables commission appointment

There will be a “shave and pave” done on stretches of gravel road surface,  in the 372nd to 376th and Grand Avenue, Forest Blvd. and Hemingway area of North Branch.  City Council last week accepted a quote from Knife River contractors,  for $172,950. The only other submittal was Prefer Paving’s for approximately $197,000.

City Public Works Supervisor Shawn Williams said this concentrated area of gravel routes is  “high maintenance”  and regular grading isn’t addressing the rutted conditions.  The paving will be evaluated in a couple of years to see how well it’s doing and if it needs  re-engineering, he explained.  Traffic counts are in the range of 500 to 600 vehicles daily, Williams added.

The city council also accepted finance director Richard Hill’s official resignation/retirement notice. His last day was Friday the 12th.

Council tabled voting on an appointment to the vacant seat on the city planning commission; created when Joel McPherson was appointed to the council.

Ian Lexvold and Patrick Meacham applied for the planning commisison and council wanted more time to review what each man might bring to the post, they said.  

Council unanimously agreed to vote on the appointment at the April 26 city council session.

North Branch has been using a debit card for certain payments and the city administrator advised council that public finance auditors recommend using a credit card. The council approved on a 5-0 vote a new use policy and limit of $2,000 for the cards.

In other business;  discussion ensued on a League of MN Cities-written statement that’s been making the rounds in city council chambers throughout Minnesota, as officeholders are asked by the LMC to adopt a resolution related to transportation project funding.

North Branch council could not fully support some of the statement’s bullet points,  and Council member Kathy Blomquist said a couple of the legislative bills,  cited in the resolution for the city to support, are “...basically just to help us tax our own citizens.  Plus, the new vehicle license renewal surcharge being proposed in St Paul only generates revenues for cities with populations larger than North Branch,  as-written.  The bill is little help to small cities, she stated.

Council opted to put the resolution of support on the back burner and may request more information to clarify some concerns from staff with the League in the meantime.

The Board of Appeal and Equalization is set for April 17, at 6 p.m. at city hall. This is where you start the process of appealing the valuation on yourproperty for purposes of property tax.

The North Branch Fire Department smelt fry is May 4 this year.  It starts at 1 p.m.






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