April 18, 2016, Council Minutes






APRIL 18, 2016 – 7:30 PM


Attendance: PC Mike Mason, Attorney Beck

  1. CALL TO ORDER – Mayor Williamson called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.
  2. ROLL CALL – Pavot, Hughes, Bren, Horton, Williamson
  3. INTRODUCTIONS – Williamson introduced the council and staff to the public.  Administrator Tolsma, Clerk Lewin.
  5. ADOPT AGENDA – Hughes makes a motion and Bren seconds to adopt the agenda.  All votes ayes, motion carries.
  6. ADOPT CONSENT AGENDA – Horton makes a motion and Bren seconds to adopt the consent agenda.  All votes ayes, motion carries.
    1. City Council Regular Meeting Minutes from April 4, 2016
    2. City Council Work Session Minutes from April 11, 2016
    3. Garbage Hauler License
  7. PUBLIC FORUM – Nothing.
    1. MPCA Request for Authorization to Pull Wells –

Williamson said this is explained in the packet.  He said the city has three wells and two have been shut down for two years.  He said the MPCA is trying to realize additional funds as they are eligible for additional investigation.  He said the City’s permission is necessary.  Williamson said he doesn’t have a problem with this going forward but the timing might be difficult.  He said the MPCA is willing to also look at well #3.  Williamson said the action is to allow wells #1 and #2 to be pulled.  Williamson makes the motion for pumps on Wells #1 and #2 to be pulled by the MNPCA per their request.  Bren seconds.  Hughes asked about additional costs to the city.   Williamson said to do what they are requesting, there is no additional cost.  He said the investigation will help to figure out where the contamination is coming from.  He said the only cost is if the city chooses to do something outside this.  He suggests the city does not do this or at least further the conversation.  He said unnecessary activity shouldn’t be interjected at this point.  Tolsma said it’s a complex project and the variables can be numerous.  He said it seems risky due to delaying the project.  He still thinks the need to pull the wells is necessary, and he likes the idea at some time of looking at well #3 because it has had to work extra hard while well 1 and well 2 have been shut down.  Horton wondered if the city will be notified about this and Williamson said he thinks Tolsma will be in conversation with Rick Jolly about this.  Bren said according to the info in the packet there is something about a new aquifer and she wonders if this is a result of where the TCE’s are coming from.  Tolsma said he believes a sample well might be drilled to be used for investigative purposes.  All votes ayes, motion carries.

    1. Mayor and Council –
  • Williamson said he attended three meetings, Police Commission, Gillespie Center and the LMCC.  He said the police meeting was pro forma and covered response times which remains to be a very good result.  He said the Heart Safe program was discussed and was very similar to what Deputy Chief Fischer presented.  He said the Hwy 12 corridor was discussed due to its high fatality rate.  He said there has been some discussion about reconstructing some of the area.  Tolsma said discussed was that fine revenue has been dropping and part of the explanation is the Orono PD is taking a different approach and it’s more education related and community based instead of revenue generating. Williamson said the police budget is under budget and mostly related to savings on fuel.  He said they are required to return any surplus but typically it’s been carried over to provide capital funds for equipment.  He said in the past it’s been informal but in the next month they are going to amend the contract for more formality.  Williamson said regarding the Gillepsie Center, the finances are in good shape and fund raising is on track.  He said there is an effort to landscape the rear of the building to enhance the view. He said they need volunteers to assist with this.  Williamson said for the LMCC those with cable ready t.v.’s were unable to find the local channels unless they searched for them and this was in violation of the franchise.  He said the local access channels are now back to where they were traditionally located.  He said the upgrade has been completed for the high-definition. 
  • Bren said she passed on to her parish nurse at St. John's Lutheran Church the AED training information and found out certain staff are already trained. 
  • Hughes said Jim Brimeyer, the City’s former acting city administrator a few years ago, has now signed the contract with the LMCD as interim director.  Hughes said regarding the electric shock drowning program, he said two people in 2016 have already succumbed to this.  He said electricity around docks is getting a lot of attention. He said there is a big push across the state for no swimming at marinas that have electricity at docks. 
    1. City Administrator –

Tolsma said the 12th and final garden plot was leased out. He said they are now full and if the weather cooperates the soil materials will in installed by the end of this week.  He said the arrangement has been finalized and they are being appropriately placed within the park.  Pavot agreed that they spent time looking at sunshine patterns and they’ve designed the garden spots to be placed accordingly.  Williamson asked about the playground equipment being reinstalled at Wilkes Park.  Tolsma said he doesn’t know but he will check with Goman to see if it’s scheduled.  He said the merry-go-round is in good condition so they want to get it back in place as soon as possible.  Williamson said it’s not the intention of the council to discontinue this as a park and turn it entirely into a community garden.  He said if anything, they are interested in discussing upgrading the play equipment.  Hughes said he thought the merry-go-round had an insurance problem.  Tolsma said he’s not personally aware of that.  Williamson recalls a while back Berkley Risk presented a report that showed merry-go-rounds to present somewhat of a danger.  He said the merry-go-round at Wilkes was deemed to be safe. He doesn’t understand why this was removed and especially concerned that it was removed without the council being made aware of why.  He said the council needs to be consulted on these matters.  Williamson asked if there has been any insurance communication about this and Tolsma said he isn’t aware of anything but he’ll do research. 

    1. City Engineer
    2. City Planner
    3. City Attorney
    4. Public Works Superintendent
    1. April 19 – Election Training for City Staff – All Day
    2. April 20 – LMC Safety & Loss Control Training – 8:00 AM
    3. April 27 – Fire Commission – 11:00 AM
    4. April 27 – LMCD – 6:00 PM, the main meeting at 7 PM
    5. May 2 – City Council Regular Meeting – 7:30 PM
    1. Bills & Payroll – Hughes makes the motion to pay the bills and Pavot seconds.  All votes ayes, motion carries.
  4. MISCELLANEOUS (Information Only) – Horton asked about the retention pond being emptied.  She wonders if the lining was removed and the water went away.  Tolsma said a temporary  short cut was performed and tile was installed to drain the pond.  He said once the finish coat of West Arm Rd east is complete, they’ll put it back in place to retain water.  He said it’s performed very well and vegetation is establishing. 
  5. ADJOURNMENT – Horton makes a motion and Pavot seconds to adjourn the meeting at 8:17 p.m.  All votes ayes, motion carries.




Wendy Lewin, City Clerk



Dan Tolsma, City Administrator