September 10, 2009 at 8:16 a.m.

Wyoming Council to meet September 14 to adopt preliminary budget and levy; new school project gets thumbs up

Wyoming Council to meet September 14 to adopt preliminary budget and levy; new school project gets thumbs up
Wyoming Council to meet September 14 to adopt preliminary budget and levy; new school project gets thumbs up

Wyoming City Council met in regular session, minus the mayor, last week. Vice Mayor Roger Elmore ran the meeting.

The council is going right up to the very last minute, adopting Wyoming's 2010 preliminary budget and levy. A special session was scheduled for Sept. 14 to take action. Council member Russ Goudge wondered last week if one meeting would be sufficient to do the budget review. City staff and Elmore, who serves on the budgeting subcommittee, assured Goudge the preliminary amount is going to be noncontroversial, adding that the final levy isn't acted on until December, so if there are issues with the levy there is still time.

The state requires preliminary levy details for the coming year to go to the county auditor by mid-September, and finalized in December.

City Administrator Craig Mattson added the state didn't supply the city's levy limit calculations in a timely manner this year. Wyoming has a limit imposed that results in it having to levy $448,000 less than it did last year, Mattson explained. "This puts a crimp on some of the things we'd hoped to do."

The levy details will be available at the special session, Sept. 14.

Wyoming council unanimously awarded a bond sale bid for $3,955,000 for a couple of road improvement projects. Northland Securities had the recommended bid brought forward by Springsted public sector financial advisors. The city's issuing the taxable, General Obligation bonds under a federal program, "Build America Bonds." The city qualifies for a rebate which over the life of the debt (2025 expiration) will come to $634,000 in tax credit.

Wyoming maintained its A3 bond rating, council was advised.

Another bond issue was approved to be issued through the city, but is not a city taxpayer liability.

North Lakes Academy is moving forward on its new, grades 5-12, school at 257th (west of the Wyoming Elementary building) and will use conduit financing to secure $11 million to fund the project.

The Conditional Use Permit allowing the project was also re-authorized 4-0 by council. The original permit issued in 2008 had expired partly due to delays in constructing the new 257th.

The Comfort Lake-Forest Lake Watershed District Board will act on stormwater and water quality provisions related to the project at its September meeting.

According to watershed district correspondence, the 15 acre site sees 25.6 percent of its land mass turned into impervious surface due to this project. The city zoning department, however, puts this at 24.8 percent. (The shoreland threshold is 25 percent)

The watershed district recommends the soccer field soil type be upgraded to minimize hydrologic "disturbance" and possible impacts to nearby Heims Lake.

City Engineer Mark Erichson reported there will be some paving underway in coming days on the #22 project, and it'll seem the work is wrapping up; but road re-opening still isn't expected until November.

A retaining wall proposed at Dan Julik's property on #22 was deleted, and Julik's father represented him at last week's meeting. He questioned why the city pulled the promised wall and said the newly-created slope is eroding. Erichson explained the county made the decision on the retaining wall. The city is only involved extending city services (sewer and water) and in urban improvements. Julik was advised to discuss the wall with the county engineer.

In public comment: Steve Sicheneder, resident, asked about the budget process and why the council had not been more public in its discussion last year about costs to improve the old township hall. Sicheneder also said he is concerned about the council's "cavalier" attitude towards spending and lack of public access to budget documentation.

Park Board member Tim Patterson spoke briefly about the park board's capital improvements plan. Elmore made a motion to put the Swenson Park paving request on to the next council meeting agenda (has been tabled the end of August) and asked Patterson to make a presentation at that time. The motion passed unanimously.

Rudy Olson (property owner, non-resident) asked if the city had gotten an e mail protesting the assessments for 257th from an Olson family member. The city had not. The declaration could be provided in hard copy that evening, Olson said.

A modern version of the city logo was adopted unanimously. The city logo still incorporates a stagecoach but has been snazzed-up a little.


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