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Alexandria, Minnesota December 26, 2006 Pursuant to due call and notice thereof, a regular meeting of the City Council was held in the Council Chambers with those present reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, after which Mayor Dan Ness called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. The following members were present: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank The following members were absent: None Also present were two news media representatives. CONSENT AGENDA A. Approve Minutes of December 4, 2006 Truth In Taxation Meeting, and December 11, 2006 Council Meeting B. Approve License Application and Authorize Issuance (copy attached to and made a part of these minutes) Following discussion, a motion was made by Weisel and seconded by Frank to approve the Consent Agenda as presented. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank NO: None SCOTT DEITZ, ALEXANDRIA LIGHT AND POWER (ALP) – REQUEST TO GO TO BID A. Nokomis Substation Buss Work – Scott Deitz, ALP, noted this job is another step in the process of building the substation. The bid would include steep support members, porcelain insulators and aluminum buss work to tie the transformer and transmission system together. The job cost is estimated to be between $175,000 and $225,000. Following discussion, a motion was made by Carlson and seconded by Weisel to accept the recommendation of the Board of Public Works and authorize ALP to call for bids for the Nokomis Substation Buss Work. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank NO: None B. County Road 44 Distribution/Feeder Southwest Circuit Project – Mr. Deitz mentioned ALP has combined these into one bid. CR 44 circuit is planned to serve the area along CR 44 to relieve loading problems in that area. He pointed out that the cable prices and delivery were not initially favorable so ALP put this project off until 2007. The CR 44 circuit is estimated to be approximately $775,000. The southeast circuit is a carryover project too. This project will be installed along Nokomis Street to feed from the Nokomis Substation to a switch in the SE corner of Noonan’s Park. This job is estimated to be approximately $100,000. Following discussion, a motion was made by Carlson and seconded by Kalpin to accept the recommendation of the Board of Public Works and authorize ALP to call for bids for the Nokomis Substation Buss Work and County Road 44 Distribution/Feeder Southwest Circuit Project. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank NO: None CONI MCKAY, CHAMBER DIRECTOR – 2006 ALEXANDRIA HOTEL & HOSPITALITY (AHH) REPORT Coni McKay, Chamber Director, mentioned the City Council approved an ordinance establishing the Alexandria Hotel and Hospitality (AHH) nine years ago. She then reviewed the 2006 Alexandria Hotel and Hospitality Report, copy of which is attached to and made a part of these minutes. The AHH Board looks at one item during a specific month. The Hockey Fest has had over $20,000 to help promote that event. The projected income for 2006 is $196,000, up approximately 3.5% over 2005 total revenues. They are also estimating that the contract service expense, which includes reimbursement of time, postage, telephone, etc. will be $12,000 in 2006, which is 6% of the total budget. She pointed out in many communities it is 50%. Ms. McKay noted for the Special Marketing Focus, in 2005 the AHH moved away from general advertising and went to promoting specific events. One event in particular was the B.A.S.S. State Federal Fishing Tournament. The participants were in the community for two weeks. It is important is to leverage their dollars by collaborating with another events. They collaborate on a nation-wide level. The Mayor and City Council thanked Ms. McKay for the report. Alexandria, Minnesota December 26, 2006 JUNK CAR ORDINANCE – 2ND READING Mayor Ness noted this ordinance had its first reading at a previous Council meeting and now a second reading is in order. Following brief discussion, a motion was made by Frank and seconded by Benson to adopt Ordinance No.590, 2nd Series, AN ORDINANCE AMENDING ALEXANDRIA CITY CODE SECTION 9.55, SUBDIVISION 1.E. AND SUBDIVISION 5.J. REGARDING JUNK CARS. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank NO: None The full text of this Ordinance appears in the Ordinance file. BOARDS/COMMISSIONS - DISCUSSION The Mayor and City Council discussed the various Boards and Commission appointments. CITY PLANNER MIKE WEBER – PLANNING COMMISSION RECOMMENDATIONS 1. Public Hearing – Conditional Use Application – Raymond Burgau The applicant is seeking an after-the-fact conditional use permit to allow open and outdoor storage and display of boats and marine equipment. The property is located at 2630 Hwy 29 South and is legally described as Lot 3 Blk 1 Ex: S’ly 1 AC & E’ly .42 AC “Emerson Addition” Alexandria City (Ward 5). RECOMMEND APPROVAL of the Conditional Use application (C-06-024) submitted by Raymond Burgau to allow open and outdoor storage and display of boats and marine equipment based on the following Findings of Fact: 1. The request is consistent with the City’s Comprehensive Plan, which is commercial. 2. The request meets land area, setback, shoreland, floodplain and wetland requirements. 3. The request will not depreciate the surrounding area. 4. The request is consistent with the character of the surrounding area and is a mix of commercial uses. 5. The existing or proposed utilities are adequate to accommodate the request. 6. The existing street “Emerson Street” is adequate to handle the request. 7. The request will not place any undue financial burdens on the City. AND the following Conditions: 1. Any lighting to be hooded and directed away from public street. 2. City Engineer needs to review and approve drainage. 3. Display and storage area either needs to be paved or covered with concrete and must be completed by June 30, 2008. 4. Plat must be recorded with Douglas County. Following discussion, a motion was made by Frank and seconded by Carlson to accept the recommendation of the Planning Commission and approve Conditional Use C-06-024 based upon the Findings of Fact and Conditions outlined above. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank NO: None 2. Old & Other Business A. Revised Final Plat – “Pete’s Point” Mr. Weber stated the City approved the final plat of “Pete’s Point” in November 2006. The applicant has made several minor modifications to the plat and has submitted the revised final plat for approval. During a long-range planning meeting, it was determined that a slightly modified configuration would be better. It was determined that it made more sense to revise the final plat than to have to re-plat it again next year. The previous plat will not be recorded. The revised plat needs to be recorded yet this year and is consistent with the previously approved plat. There are no changes to any prior conditions. RECOMMEND APPROVAL of the revised final plat for “Pete’s Point” as presented. Alexandria, Minnesota December 26, 2006 Following brief discussion, a motion was made by Carlson and seconded by Kalpin to accept the recommendation of the Planning Commission and approve “Pete’s Point” final plat as presented. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank NO: None 3. Public Hearing – Zoning Text Amendment – City of Alexandria The City of Alexandria is requesting to amend Section 10.24 of the City Code relating to signs. The property is located City-wide. There are two main issues the amendments attempt to address: 1) Electronic and changeable copy signs and billboards and 2) Clear delineation of commercial and non-commercial speech. In addition, staff has taken the opportunity to propose other adjustments to the ordinance. RECOMMEND APPROVAL of a moratorium on electronic changeable copy signs and displays. This would exclude gasoline price signs and time and temperature signs. This moratorium would not exceed past April 1, 2007. City Attorney John Lervick noted the moratorium is to stop new electronic signs in order for the City to review the information. The Planning Commission needs this time since there is such a large quantity of information. Following discussion, a motion was made by Frank and seconded by Carlson to accept the recommendation of the Planning Commission and adopt for its first reading an ordinance declaring a moratorium on LED electronic changeable copy signs and displays not to exceed 90 days. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank NO: None On another item Mr. Weber noted he would like to update the City Council on the Comprehensive Plan. The big kickoff date is January 17th – he wanted to make sure the City Council and Planning Commission were invited and aware of the meeting. It is not an official meeting. CITY ENGINNER TIM SCHOONHOVEN – WATER RETENTION POND AT FRED FOSLIEN PARK City Engineer Tim Schoonhoven noted both the Park Board and Storm Water Utility (SWU) Committee are involved with this project. This is for a proposed water retention pond in Fred Foslien Park. About two years ago the Storm Water Utility Committee mapped all the storm water problem areas. They reviewed each project and prioritized them, and this particular project had a very high priority. What ranks it so high is the watershed and it empties directly into Lake Victoria. Because the project is in a park they have met with neighbors within 350 feet of the park. There have also been meetings with the Park Board and SWU Committee. The pond would serve the function of treating and cleaning the water before it discharges into the lake. The Park Board met and they would like to get the Council’s input before proceeding with the project. Both committees recommend the project proceed. He mentioned Park Director Bill Thoennes had a letter stating the Park Board gave their approval, but they would also like to stay very involved in the process of designing and layout of the amenities to the park. Council Member Weisel indicated he did attend both meetings, but he has apprehensions with the project. When the Storm Water Utility Commission started the storm water projects, they were going to address the flooding before the quality. He feels this projects needs to be turned around and put on the bottom of the projects, and they need to handle the flooding before the water quality issues. It could be a good project for the area; he has had negative and positive input from the neighbors. He feels flooding needs to be addressed before water quality and that is what the City Council told the community when the storm water fee was adopted. Council Member Carlson noted she is on the Park Board and has been involved in all the meetings and she knows that water quality is a huge issue for everybody in the lakes area, however, there is a mandate by the State to have a plan and that is how this all started. How the City is going to protect the water quality has to be filed by February 2007. When it comes to the Park Board, they are very concerned about water quality. They also want to make sure they address the southwest flooding problem. The Park Board stated they approved this and gave it back to the SWU Committee to see if the southwest project was still a priority. This project is less expensive. The Park Board gave their approval and wanted to be kept updated on the project. Alexandria, Minnesota December 26, 2006 Jeff James, SWU Committee Member, stated the southwest storm water project does have a higher priority than the Fred Foslien Park project. However, the City does not have the money to build a $3,000,000 retention area to address the southwest area now. The SWU Committee is trying to figure out how to fund that with the Budget Committee. The SWU Committee feels that projects like this, which they can fund now, are important until they can get the southwest area done. He wishes they could do the southwest water now and also the Technical College area. It is not a simple decision for the SWU Committee. He does not believe they are overlooking the flooding. The SWU Committee is supposed to worry about both water quality and flooding. They have looked at flooding before quality, but it is just what they can get done now. Besides the southwest storm sewer this is the next worse but the southwest storm sewer project will be fixed when the funding becomes available. The City needs to look at the credits given before they consider raising the fee. Council Member Weisel wondered how much money this would cost for the project. City Engineer Tim Schoonhoven noted the original was $75,000. He noted it is very difficult to prioritize projects. They do not have a funding solution for the southwest and would probably bond for that. The approach is to set aside enough money to do one or two projects every year or every other year. Jeff James noted it is not that they are neglecting the flooding they just cannot afford the southwest project now. Council Member Frank noted he would support the Park project, and they are trying to work on the southwest project – it is not a fix for tomorrow. If the Committees support the project he would recommend they approve it. Council Member Weisel wondered if they have been working with the county or townships about doing projects. Jeff James noted they have also talked about the projects in the annexation areas. Those are major concerns because the townships do not want to fix it when it is coming into he City. Council Member Kalpin stated he has been working on trying to resolve this issue since he has been on the Council. He feels they should consider buying houses and put in ponds. Following lengthy discussion, a motion was made by Benson and seconded by Carlson to accept the recommendations of the Park Board and Storm Water Utility Committee to proceed with the Fred Foslien Park retention pond. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Carlson, Benson, Frank NO: Kalpin, Weisel CITY ATTORNEY’S ITEMS OF BUSINESS City Attorney John Lervick handed out an amendment regarding the taxicab licensing. It is to bring the City Code up to date to match the state. A motion was made by Frank and seconded by Carlson to adopt for its first reading an ordinance amending the City Code concerning taxicab license. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank NO: None CITY ADMINISTRATOR’S ITEMS OF BUSINESS City Administrator Jim Taddei noted on Thursday they would be holding interviews for the Street Commissioners’ position. They have seven applicants to be interviewed. On another item Mr. Taddei noted each year at the last City Council meeting, the City transfers funds. The Finance Director has several amounts to transfer. Following discussion, a motion was made by Weisel and seconded by Carlson to adopt Resolution No. 06-85, RESOLUTION TRANSFERRING FUNDS. The motion carried by the following vote: YES: Kalpin, Carlson, Weisel, Benson, Frank NO: None The full text of this Resolution appears in the Resolution file. OLD AND OTHER BUSINESS Mayor Ness invited Alexandria Township Supervisor Roger Thalman to speak. Alexandria, Minnesota December 26, 2006 Mr. Thalman noted as of January 1, 2007, Alexandria Township would take over all building, zoning, and subdivision regulation enforcement. The Douglas County Commissioners have signed off on it. The next step is the age-old issue of double permits in the area. They would like to look at having the Township take over all building permits and possible adopting the State Building Code, but for now they are considering contracting the City Building Official for his services, also possibly the fire code. The annexation area would be going into the City so they would turn over the annexation and let the City handled the building permit in that area. Mayor Ness recommends appointing two township officials and two City officials to start meeting to hash over the details. City Administrator Jim Taddei noted there are quite a bit of details to work out. He also stated the Township should be commended on taking on this issue. Mr. Thalman noted they have been working on this for a couple years. Council Member Weisel also commended them on their aggressiveness on this issue. Mayor Ness then called upon Coni McKay for the beautification award. Ms. McKay noted this award is for Second Avenue and Martin Hope Park. It was given on behalf of the Chamber of Commerce for a worthwhile beautification project. She congratulated the City on behalf of the Beautification Committee for Second Avenue and Martin Hope Park. Mayor Ness recognized Douglas County Commissioner Dan Olson and Park Board Member Carol Radil, who were both in attendance at the meeting. PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD Mayor Ness noted this was the last meeting of 2006 and felt it was a good year, and he commended the City Council and City staff, whom he feels are the best and works hard on their behalf, and also the newspaper and KXRA for the good reporting. He noted it was also a sad note because it was Council Member Dale Kalpin’s last meeting. Mayor Ness then presented Mr. Kalpin with a plaque. Mr. Ness noted Mr. Kalpin had a way to get the constituents and to bring their concerns to the Council. There being no further business, a motion was made by Kalpin, seconded by Carlson, and carried unanimously by those present to adjourn the meeting at 8:16 p.m. _______________________________________ H. Dan Ness, Mayor ATTEST: _________________________________ James P. Taddei, City Administrator
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