April 28, 2014 Work Session






APRIL 28, 2014 – 7:00 PM


Reinhardt called the meeting to order at 7:01 pm.  Those present: Reinhardt, Sippel, Bren, Hughes, Williamson,  Administrator Tolsma, Clerk Lewin, Attorney Beck, Engineer Pearson, Assessor Wynn,  Mark Vyvyan. 


    1. Kevin will be at the meeting to discuss the current status of property values in Spring Park and to answer any questions from the council. Please bring the 2014 Assessment Summary that was included with your March 24 work session packet, or let staff know if you need another copy.

Wynn said he had only one person come to the open book meeting and he had talked to her previously.  Wynn said she had some questions about how things were done as she was from a different state.  Wynn said he had a total of seven calls and only four addressed valuation.  He said it’s been very quiet and he detects a clear appreciation of the fact that values are starting to rebound.  Wynn said the trend this year is at least flat but mostly up and some properties are up a lot.  Wynn said the condo number is deceiving because the vast majority is in The Mist.  He said this is remaining flat for one more year but there is no question the values are increasing. Reinhardt asked how many owners were at The Mist and Wynn said he notes seven.  He said they’re not even being marketed as condos, they’re being marketed as rentals. He said there is concern about the tax disparity between condo classification and rental classification. 


Williamson asked about what MCAP means and Wynn said it is market condition adjusted price.  Wynn said it comes from the Department of Revenue.  He explained when an appraiser pulls comparables and evaluating property to a given date (January 2nd) if the comps aren’t close to the appraisal date, there’s going to be some difference – especially if there is something like an eight month difference.  They’ve had to figure out a market condition adjustment and it’s adjusting for the change in market.  He said if property  values are changing at 12% a year in order to evaluate at the end of the year they should value at 12% or at 6 months, 6%.  He said they now have programming to do that.  He said it’s a change in the process to more accurately reflect what the market is doing and not reflect low sales in a neighborhood and later sales with higher prices.  Wynn said sometimes it’s hard to value a property for various reasons.  He said the market is trying to find itself right now and there are so few sales because of low inventory and it’s subject to wild swings because of this.  Sippel wonders about the difference between townhouse and double bungalow.  Wynn said townhouses are easiest to confuse because they can be classified as condos.  Townhouses may own the land under the unit and the owner may be responsible for the outside maintenance.  He said in a condo the owner typically just owns the inside.  Duplexes and Triplexes are units on one PID number and there isn’t usually an association fee.

  1. WATER TOWER DISCUSSION – MARK VYVYAN – Meeting is closed to discuss litigation strategy. 7:49 pm.
    1. See attached staff memo & documents (Confidential).

Reopen the meeting at 8:49 pm.


    1. See attached staff memo.

Bren wonders why the city should be concerned about this.  She said she’s watered her flowers with chlorinated water.  She doesn’t think he should get any price breaks.  Goman said there are other nurseries that water with chlorinated water.  Sippel thinks there is another conversation and that is industrial rates.  He said the whole point in the tiered structure is to conserve.  He said the rates predicate on single household use.  Tolsma said he’s been keeping Norling in the loop on this and Tolsma said he’s not sure what approach Norling will take. He said at times Norling seems to want to work with the city and at other times he has suggested he might take legal action because his well is perfectly legal, according to him.  Bren wonders if the well is legal.   From what she understands is if city water is available, that’s what has to be used.  Beck said the code isn’t as clear as it could be but the code with the statute makes it more strong.  Tolsma said he spoke to Rick Jolly at the MPCA and the concerns about the TCE’s and Jolly thought the chances were probably minimal that Norling’s well has affected the water because of how shallow it is.  Tolsma said Norling states the city knew he had a well at his other location and the city knew he was going to drill a well at the new place.  Goman said that’s not true as he drilled the well on the weekend.  Reinhardt suggests this be put in writing.  Beck said she originally sent him a letter that she drafted.  Bren thinks the well needs to be capped as it’s illegal.  Tolsma said another letter can be sent outlining the ultimatums. 


Beck wonders about the water rates and industrial use.  Reinhardt said she’d be interested in looking into this.  Williamson is concerned about kicking the dog and prefers to let sleeping dogs lie.  He said this could essentially raise rates for everyone in order to make up for this.  Reinhardt said some of the big water users were hit hard with the initial increase to the conservation rates.  Reinhardt said this was mandated at the time and now the mandate is optional.  Goman said he would be in favor of an annual increase.  Williamson said the operating system is very efficient and he doesn’t want to see that change.   Sippel feels industrial rates could be tied to having Norling switch. 


    1. See attached staff memo.

Tolsma said there is a draft RFP for the remainder of this year.  He said there are six events and the RFP has been adjusted to reflect four events remaining this year.  Williamson wonders when this would go out and due back because it might be too late for Memorial Day.  Sippel said he brought this up because of a reaction to the invoices he saw but he doesn’t think it has to happen today.  He would prefer a bid be for a full year versus piecemeal.  Hughes said he would like to study closer the placement of the banners and how they would end up looking along Sunset Drive.  Goman suggests that maybe a banner be placed on a pole in order to study this.  Sippel thinks this might be a good idea when Dahlke is putting up the flags for Memorial Day. After looking at the sample photos, Reinhardt said she doesn’t think it looks as bad as she thought it would. It’s agreed that a sample banner will be put up in front of Rockvam Boatyards.  Sippel would like to see MLK flags not displayed.  Goman wants the flags put up for Presidents’ Day.  Sippel thinks winter is not the time to have someone up in a bucket truck and Reinhardt agrees, flags just don’t seem to work in the winter.  Reinhardt wonders if a motion to cancel MLK Day is necessary at a meeting.  Williamson suggests to delegate the staff to streamline the program and update the schedule. 


    1. See attached summary of agreement priorities from LMCC staff.
  • Williamson said this has been a three year process following guidelines from the FCC and other commissions who have been through this process. He said there was a technical assessment done as well. Williamson said on priorities with 17 cities some areas couldn’t get cable because of density so they negotiated a better standard of 15 houses per mile but some cities decided to depart the LMCC so there is only one city left, Independence, that it applies to. He said it’s a better deal and it may help to attract cities to join them. He said in the remaining twelve cities under the terms of the franchise it will be 100% built out. Williamson said technical standards were achieved for safety and quality but the upgrade to the system capacity was traded away for a variety of other things:
  • customer service for payments and to maintain availability.
  • notice requirements when changing the program lineup or rate changes, customers get 30 days notice.
  • telephone service availability must be maintained.
  • there were four PEG channels and now they have five with one dedicated to Wayzata Schools. The other four channels are two for government playback channels, channel twelve is a public access for public service, school events and the other one is an information channel.
  • funding is a big one.
  • the needs assessment was ten year need for $3 million. This was to replace equipment and update to high definition. He said this was very ambitious and the increase would have been from $1.40 to $5. Increase in Peg fees will only come as a result of the commission to initiate it.       He said there isn’t a majority vote to do this at this time He said the power to do this is written into the agreement.
  • They tightened up definitions,
  • the 5% franchise fee stays the same, a twelve percent annual interest rate for underpayments has been built in.
  • Payments for audits when deficiencies are found was written in.
  • The status of the franchise hasn’t come up for a final vote but it needs to be adopted by the member cities. Two cities have taken it up and adopted it.


Williamson said he didn’t think this was ready to be brought forward yet as it isn’t a final document. 



Hughes said Bayview Condominiums reconfigured the dock so it all extends into the water.  Mary Ann Thurk is concerned they are adding more boatslips and they aren’t.  It’s remained the same; it’s an entire new docking system.  Thurk is also concerned this will come too close to her property and it was determined it will not and it is within the setbacks.  Hughes said they are losing two BSU’s so they are keeping some small spots for fishing boats and PWC’s. Reinhardt asked whether they are renting to outsiders and Hughes said he doesn’t want to get into it but all checks performed have revealed the boats belong to residents at the apartments. 


  • Hughes said in Dan’s dispatch there was an issue with someone about the water quality and while he was in the hospital at Waconia, nursing staff asked about Spring Park’s water quality and whether it is drinkable or not.
  • Sippel asked about water main break in front of SA (3701 Sunset Drive). He said it was obvious to him it was bulging. Sippel wondered why this wasn’t caught. Goman said part of it was the frost. Sippel said this was a couple of weeks. Goman said the water pumping wasn’t out of range.       Goman said there was a previous break in 1990 and it was a leaker. Goman said this will be an expensive repair. He thinks there should be a leak study to pinpoint small leaks. Goman said pumping has gone down since the break. Sippel wonders with the radio meters if it would have been caught if the building (SA) had been occupied. Goman said no because it was before the meter. Sippel wonders if by doing the math on radio reads and if they don’t add up to the right numbers, does that tell if there is a leak.
  • Tolsma said it’s likely there will be a group of West Arm residents coming to the council meeting on Monday night council meeting due to flooding and improper drainage.
  • Pearson said an agreement has been reached with GLE on two streetlights. Sippel said part of the rationale was to push back some of the costs on the suppliers and Pearson said they won’t know.


Work Session adjourns at 9:55 pm.





                                                                        Wendy Lewin, City Clerk




Dan Tolsma, Administrator