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May 17, 2021

4/16/2021 11:45:00 AM
Shafer Council reviews bar outdoor events, parking complaint

Shafer City Council met April 6 for a regular meeting.  All members were present with attorney James Monge via zoom.

In new business, the council heard from AJ Stockwell representing Schwickerts Roofing and HVAC. Stockwell discussed a proposal presented to Shafer for roofing and HVAC systems maintenance.  The roofing proposal would cost the city $650 annually with the option of an amount up to $500 to preform emergency repairs found during the inspection.  The inspection includes all of the city’s buildings and structures.  The HVAC proposal would cost the city $1,726 annually with the option of a $260 tracker system.  The system would help with budgeting and have reports available online.  The council thanked Stockwell for his time and will discuss this at a later meeting.

The council then discussed outdoor events at Shafer Saloon and Ole’s Crossroads.  City clerk Joan Ciesler told the council the city determines the number of outdoor events that can be held.  In 2019, prior to COVID-19 the city allowed three events per establishment. The businesses had to notify residents within 300 feet of the venue about the events at least two weeks prior to the event.  In 2020, due to the pandemic, the city allowed more than three events due to indoor restrictions.  After a brief discussion, the council agreed to keep the allowance the same as 2020 with over three events allowed.  The motion passed unanimously.

The council then discussed street damage along 306th Street.  There have been complaints about a resident parking a semi tractor trailer on the street in Buffalo Ridge.  The council was shown photos of the damage. There is no ordinance prohibiting parking on city streets.  Ciesler told the council the Sheriff’s Office is aware of the problem and the only action that could be taken is the axle limit at 5 tons or less.  The council agreed to address the issue at the next ordinance meeting.

In the public works report, maintenance supervisor Dan Cooper told the council maintenance worker Andre Myers has passed his water operator test and is now certified.

Cooper then asked permission from the council to take a “Roads Scholar” program to get his certificate.  Online courses include culvert installation and maintenance, sign maintenance and management, gravel road maintenance and design (which would be helpful on the possibilities of development of rural areas around the city), maintenance of stormwater, installation and management of roadside turfgrasses, snow and ice control material application. Each one of these online courses provide information and techniques to help move along projects faster. They will also save the city money because it will be able to help Cooper identify problem areas throughout the city before they get too bad to fix in house. Total cost for Cooper to attend would not exceed $750. The time frame would be 5 years to earn 8 credits.

Councilmember Nick Brehm said he doesn’t see the benefit to the city. He said he would like Cooper to have as much knowledge as possible but doesn’t feel the city should pay for Cooper to go to school. If that’s something that Cooper wants to do that would be something Cooper should take on himself and pay out of his own pocket.

Councilmember Brad Swenson said the city pays for the water and wastewater training as that is a requirement for the job.  This training is not a requirement for his job.

Councilmember Diane Chmielewski asked other council members didn’t they take the online training that the city paid for. Reply was yes. She said that was professional training and said she sees the benefits of professional training for Cooper, as it would add knowledge in those areas, would add to his skill set. The credits earned are a secondary thing, with the knowledge gained everybody in the city would benefit. A motion by council member Patty Mattson to allow Cooper to attend failed by a vote of 2-3.

On the subject of park improvements, the council reviewed quotes from Gregory Contracting $51,990, and Peterson Companies $48,360 plus $6,905 for drain tile or $55,265 altogether.

Cooper told the council the Parks Committee has about $68,000 available for improvements.

A suggestion was made to take Buffalo Ridge Park off the scope of work and just do Willow Park.  Cooper said that no updates to Willow Park have been done in the almost five years.

A motion to do the renovation, cleanup and set up of the new structure at Willow Park installation with Peterson Companies was made by Mayor Paula Hanson that passed unanimously.
The council adjourned at 8:17 p.m.

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