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Tri-County News
Kimball, Minnesota
June 16, 2016     Tri-County News
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June 16, 2016

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PAGE 18 June 16, 2016 r-. ByJeanDoranMatua, Editor latest would be Dec. 31. At that Two people submitted their time, and again at the June 7 meet- names to the city as temporary ing, Chief Jim Frilstad expressed replacements for the city council his preference that the city hire seat vacated by Joe Krippner last internally, that is one of the two month; he moved out of city limits, full-time officers currently: Jason Sheryl Carlson and Megan Kiff- Mehr andAshley Sundquist. Noth- meyer each applied for the posi- ing has been decided yet, but the tion, and each addressed the city set a timetable, postingthejob council and answered questions, now, with applications due July 5 Carlson had filled an interim seat or 6, interview candidates July 12, on the council earlier, and did not with follow-up interviews later. apply for the position during the They hope to offer the job Aug. 1, election because her husband was with the position starting Sept. 1. quite ill. Kiffmeyer is considering There likely will be some overlap a run in November for one of the of the new chief with Frilstad until four seats that will be open, and the latter retires. (The Frilstads thought this would be a good way are staying in the community, not to test it. going anywhere.) Because of Kiffmeyer's finan- Following that portion of the cial/banking knowledge, Sheryl May 24 meeting, a public hear- graciously withdrew her applica- ing was held about a new severe tion. The council appointed Kiff- weather siren to be installed at the meyer to the remainder of the corner of Hwy. 55 and Co. Rd. 44, first two years of Krippner's term, so those in the Scheeler Addition that is until a special election for can hear it. The cost, as of Febru- that spot during the regular elec- ary, will be $21,758, and the city tion in November. The remain- maybe able to obtain some of this ing two years of that seat will be from a Stearns County hazard mit- on the ballot in November, along igation grant. After 20 minutes, no with all but one councilmember, residents or business owners had Aaron Dahlinger; all others will be come for the public meeting, so it up for election at that time. So far, was considered done. one incumbent (Eric Loewen) has Emergency manager Brian decided not to re-run for his coun- Kiffmeyer presented the new, cilseat, revised (and greatly condensed) The other big issue taken care Emergency Plan for the city. The of at the June 7, 2016, Kimball council approved it unanimously. council meeting was hiring a new They also approved up to $800 for part-time officer on the Police the fire department to purchase Department. Two of the occa- an iPad mini and case to be ableto sional, part-timers have resigned, use the county's damage assess- The council approved hiring Tom ment app (for free). Freud (pronounced Freed). Mike Schindler reported on the The council met May 24 to dis- June 3 meeting at Powder Ridge cuss his replacement as Chief with Kimball Clean Water. He when he retireslater thisyear. The updated the council on the sta- earliest would be Sept. 1, and the tus (hog factory farm application s sets New (temporary) council member Megan Kiffmeyer. Staff photo by Jean Doran Matua. has been withdrawn). Mayor Konz reported that the city's water man- ager, Brian Mehr, said the city's wells would not be affected by the hog farm just northeast of town. No property owner came for the Board of Appeal and Equalization May 3. It was reported, however, that residential and commercial properties had increased from 0-3 percent, ag properties decreased from 2-6 percent, and ag/green acre market values decreased 0-2 percent. There is displeasure with how city hall, the library, and the park shelter are being cleaned, to the point that it's affecting rentals. The city will work on it. The next meeting of the Kim- ball City Council will be at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 12 (note date change). By]ean Doran Matua, Editor The council learned that they been installed at the kiddie pool After months of discussion, the cannot lower the speed limit in and is working well. The new div- Watkins city council at its June Glenshire Estates below 30 m.p.h, ing board has been installed as 9 meeting set Saturday, Sept. 17, There is a "Slow children" sign at well. The council gave interim as its clean-up day. They are still the entrance, but no posted speed approval to the manual, to be used working on what will be accepted limit signs. The council rescinded now, until final approval at the (for what cost, and who will pay it). its prior motion to lower the speed July meeting. This is the same day as the Meeker limit there, and discussed posting The city needs to replace con- County hazardous waste collec- 30 m.p.h, signs, trollers in all 8 towers of 1 of its tion in Litchfield. They also dis- The planning commission irrigators, at a cost of $5,901; the cussed the availability of peo- heard a case of a resident wanting council approved. ple to help load and/or haul items to put solar panels on their roof; The fire department is getting for residents. The city does have a this will need a public hearing, a new pump truck in the fall. The trailer available for appliances and They discussed a walking original price was to be $395,000, computers (but no monitors, and trail in Glenshire Estates. It may and the plan was to sell the old no TVs). Details will be worked out be possible to use the highway truck for $100,000. The actual for next month's meeting, ditch, if MnDOT approves. There price is now $335,000 so they are The council appointed the fol- is a Highway 55 project scheduled hoping to get $70 or 80,000 for the lowing individuals as election for 2018, and there is $600,000 in old truck. judges: Rosemary Lease, Dolores grant money for such projects in The council's recent tour (in Faber, Debra Kramer, Margee 2021 (due in October 2016). the rain) of the city was success- Theis, and Michael Grunewald. The council approved paying ful. Overall, they said, it looks a The council unanimously $100 to each of the Watkins Fire lot better than last year, even the approved the WatkinsAmbulance Relief trustees; the funds come trailer court. There are still cars Service spending $1,200 on spe- from the fire department, up on blocks, however, and boats cialized training on working with The council approved Erica and campers parked on streets. different personalities. The train- Geislinger's hire as assistant pool And there are some yards with too ing will include fire departments manager, much junk in them, to the point from Watkins, Eden Valley, and They discussed the tennis/bas- that it's adversely affecting prop- Kimball as well. ketball court behind the church, erty values of neighbors. This is The council discussed dilap- It's very uneven but could be an ongoing issue and discussion. idated properties. One (on 1st smoothed out with an overlayLetters will be sent to those home Street) was sent a letter about for about $5,000; the alternative owners with problem properties, un-mown grass; there's been no would be digging it up and replac- giving them 30 days to clean it up, change in the situation there. The ing it for about $35,000. The money in keeping with the city's policies. other (on Central Ave.) was given would come from the park board; The next meeting of the Wat- a deadline of May 31 to repair the the council tabled it so they can kins city council will be at 7 p.m. outside wall of the home; it is not take the issue to the park board. Thursday, July 14. Meetings are completed, but it appears that The council approved estab- always open to the public, and some work has been done. lishing a public wi-fi at the pool, there is a public forum time set Attorneys are still working out if it costs less than $50 to set it up aside early in each meeting. details of the solar garden con- and there's no additional charge. tract; no action for the council yet. At the pool, the new boiler has By Jean Doran Matua, Editor police chief Ernie Junker. At its June 8 meeting, the Eden The city did not receive a Valley city council approved the CenterPoint Energy grant for two Eden Valley-Watkins Girl Scouts solar-powered radar speed con- Troop #387 to install a "Little Free trol signs, because the funds Library" in both Eden Valley and had already been allocated. One Watkins. The boxes have already would have been installed on been built, and will be installed Church Street, and the other on a pedestal (in Eden Valley in would be used at various locations a location to be determined with as needed. Clerk Mona Haag will Jim Rademacher, public worksre-apply next year, but the council director), also discussed budgeting for these The council unanimously signs in future budgets. approved the Code RED agree- Amy Wilde spoke during the ment with Meeker County. The public forum, announcing her city's attorney had only two sug- candidacy for State Senate, District gestions that will be made before 18. (See opposite page, page 19, for it takes effect, her candidacy announcement.) The city's engineer Kent Rademacher reported that the LouwagiereportedontheHighway sewer service line at the fire hall 22 project: two punch list items was fixed, for about $4,000, with- remain, but should be finished up out having to tear up the pad and within a week. Both the contractor replace it; the repair should last (Kuechle Underground) and the 50 years. He also said that street city are anxious to have this proj- sweeping and painting should be ect completed. Louwagie hopes to done before Valley Daze, weather have a final pay request for next permitting. month's meeting. The next meeting of the Eden The councilapprovedtheusual Valley city council will be a street closings for Valley Daze, week later than usual, at 7 p.m. June 23-25, pending approval by Wednesday, July 13. ByJeanDoranMatua, Editor the church. Bedrock Bar & Grill Jeff Burkhardt presented his will have a band from 4-8 p.m., report on the city's audit, which and a DJ from 8-10 p.m. The plan, was a "clean audit report." Over- she stated, is to keep it a fami- all, the city is in good standing, ly-friendly, community event. The although the enterprise funds council agreed to close streets as show a loss or reduction in prof- needed for the parade and dance. its. The auditor recommends rais- Committee members will be ing water and sewer rates to cover responsible for street clean-up, increased expenses. The Munici- and for closing up the community pal Liquor Store, which was closed center after the festival. last year, was a loss because so Fire chief Kenneth "Oscar" much product was destroyed by Laney reported that there were the flood last summer, two rescue calls and two fire calls The council approved clos- during May 2016. Air compressor ing the checking, savings and CD hook-ups for the fire trucks were funds for the Muni, transferring quoted at about $3,041. them to the city's general fund. The council discussed obtain- All asbestos except in the roof ing an AED defibrilator for city has been removed from the for- hall. Councilor Norm Bodeker mer Muni building. Demolition reported that it would cost about date has not yet been set, but it is $2,000 for an AED and the box to agreed that it will not be during house it; batteries and routine the last weekend in July (during maintenance would be at addi- the South Haven Festival). tional cost. The council will con- MaryAnn Edwards spoke for tinue to lookinto it. the South Haven Festival com- The next meeting of the South mittee. The plan is for all events Haven city council will be at 7 p.m. to be on Saturday, July 30, with a Wednesday, July 5 (date changed parade, street dance, and other because of the Fourth of July hol- events. Some activities will be at iday).