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September 15, 2019

8/29/2019 2:05:00 PM
Shafer contract with sheriff approved

Shafer City Council met August 20 for a regular meeting.  All members were present with the exception of attorney James Monge.  The council heard from Sheriff Brandon Thyen regarding the tpatrol contract with Shafer.  Thyen pointed out the cost would be $60.40 per hour and noted the only change was in the terminology of patrols.  Thyen noted in years past the contract stated 80 hours of patrol per month. The new contract states 960 hours per year.  Thyen also told the council the Sheriffs Office just hired a new deputy for the south quadrant to patrol nights which would include Shafer.  The council thanked Sheriff Thyen and approved the new contract for 2020 unanimously.

The council then unanimously approved city finance director Drew Hill for permanent status.  Hill who replaced his father Richard Hill had been working on an interim basis.

Hill then addressed the council on the proposed 2020 Levy and budget.  Hill said with the new estimate after working the numbers the levy would likely decrease close to two percent.  The only notable increase was in zoning where the levy shows an increase of 689 percent.  The drastic increase was due to the city hiring Jack Kramer as a zoning and building inspector.

In other new business, maintenance supervisor Dan Cooper presented the council with three options for water rate and sewer increases.  The city needs to raise the rates to keep up with water and sewer costs, the council needs to decide what level of increase.  The first option would be a base water rate increase of $5.90 per quarter and an increase of $10.03 per quarter for sewer per household. Option B would see increases of $2.95 for water and $5.01 for sewer per quarter.  Option C would see increases of $1.77 for water and $3.01 for sewer per quarter per household.  

Shafer currently sends out 423 water and sewer bills.  City clerk Joan Ciesler pointed out the State of Minnesota is raising its fixed quarterly connection fees to $9.93 per quarter.  Those fees are charged to cities.  The council agreed to discuss more in the near future.

Ciesler told the council the property that had been vacant since a fire a few years ago in Buffalo Ridge finally closed. Richard Berget is the new owner and has already applied for a demolition permit.  

In the engineer's report city engineer Lucas Jones told the council they had a street commission meeting and there was around $30,000 set aside for microsurfacing.  Jones said after looking at the remaining streets he thinks a simple crack sealing would be fine. Crack sealing would only cost the city around $4,000. Jones also said they currently have $65,000 in the budget for roads. Jones told the council the city may be better served being used on the water tower project.

In the public works report maintenance supervisor Dan Cooper told the council the new bucket for the tractor has arrived.  Cooper then told the council he had a tear-down date set for the hockey rink but since has learned the Chisago Lakes Football Team has volunteered to take the rink down August 24 (Sat.).  The council approved paying Cooper to be there on Saturday.

Cooper then told the council the five gallon bucket stuck in a culvert by the fire department that was causing flooding was removed and the area is draining as it should.

In the clerk's report, Ciesler told the council clean-up day produced 16 receipts that totaled $307. Ciesler noted the city pays Evergreen Recycling $150 to process the items.  

Ciesler told the council that 67 late fee notices were mailed out for water bills.  As of the meeting, 17 remained unpaid and shut-offs would begin on August 26.

The council adjourned at 7:35 p.m.

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P.O. Box 748 Lindstrom, MN 55045

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