Minutes: May 14, 2019 Regular Board Meeting

Presented for approval at the June 11, 2019 Board Meeting


May meeting was called to order at 7:00 pm by Michelle Meis with the Pledge of Allegiance. Supervisors present included, John Paitl, Betsy Rising, Branden Mell and Jared Landon. Also present was Clerk, Stan Iskierka, Deputy Clerk, Kelli Storck and Treasurer, Mary Dillner.


Agenda (Additions or Changes)


Additions to new business:

  • Dedication plaque – Tom McKenzie
  • Internet into the building
  • Culvert
  • Discuss adding a salt and sand shed

Motion by Landon seconded by Rising to approve Agenda. Approved.


Approve Minutes


Motion by Paitl seconded by Landon to approve April Minutes. Approved.


Treasurer’s Report


Motion by Paitl seconded by Rising to approve Treasurer’s Report. Approved.




  • Landon had questions regarding Midco/Shorewood Sanitary District payments. A short explanation was given. Mell said he would sit down with Landon and explain how the contract came about and how it works so that Landon will have a better understanding of the contract.


Motion by Rising seconded by Paitl to approve paying bills, including the additional bill from ECM that was just handed to the Treasurer. Approved.




  • Matthew Bonin-Represented by his Contractor (Jason) – 50302 Bayside Avenue –         Requesting a variance to build a new house with an attached garage that would extend over the property line.

Motion by Rising seconded by Landon to approve the new house/garage that would extend over the property line. Approved.


  • Terry Kugler – 50050 Clover Trail – Requesting a variance to install a new septic system on the property.


Motion by Mell seconded by Paitl to approve the installing of a new septic system on the property. Approved.


  • John Roth – 49860 Bayside Avenue – Requesting a variance to build a 40’ x 64’ pole barn that exceeds the 2000 square feet allowance.


Motion by Landon seconded by Rising to approve the building of a pole barn that exceeds to 2000 square feet allowance. Approved.

Open Forum


  • Virgil Lindstrom (51470 Berry Avenue) – Virgil expressed his concern about the frost heave/boils on Berry Avenue and would like to know if the Township is going to repair the frost boils in the road. Virgil also stated that the cracks that were supposed to get filled last year never got done. Clerk Iskierka reiterated that Virgil had a bid from last year and that Virgil was going to pay to have crack filling done on 514th and that it never got done. Sutcliff commented that the contractor was going to do Berry Avenue when they did Belle Isle, but that did not get done last year either. Rising will call Fahrner to discuss the crack sealing that should have been completed last year and to discuss having the road re-evaluated.


  • Larry Steeves (51480 Berry Avenue) – Larry explained that in the early 2000’s, Virgil wanted to pave Berry Avenue. The Board gave him the ok with the stipulation that he do test borings and also make it a 9-ton road. Once it was all completed, the Board agreed to take over all of the maintenance. Larry mentioned that it was the same stipulations that the first part of Belle Isle had. Larry said that they had a Subordinate District and paid for the road, and then after it was brought to the Township’s specifications, the Township took over. Clerk Iskierka recalls that there were conversations regarding this sometime after the year of 2004, and that the Township gave Virgil permission to do it. Iskierka also recalls that Virgil completed all of the specifications that the Town Board required of him. Iskierka also mentioned that Virgil did some chip sealing at a later time. Larry mentioned that after Virgil added onto his house the trucks did some damage to the roads, so Virgil re-fixed the road. Virgil stated that the Board also required him to have some samplings done and that a few years back, he contacted a company in either Wyoming or Forest Lake and had 6-core samplings done and he provided a copy of that report to the Township (Prefer Paving Inc.). Mell asked our contractor what he thought would be needed to fix the road. Contractor stated that it would have to be dug out, and possibly have to put drain tile underneath it, add fabric, and then patch it. Mell asked Larry and Virgil if a patch would be an acceptable solution. Virgil and Larry both agreed that it would be. The road committee will look at the road and define what is needed to repair the road and to what extent. Our contractor will give an estimate and do a quote as to how much the repair will cost. The road committee will bring the proposal to the board. The clerk will look at previous minutes to see what was recorded in regards to Berry Avenue being paved.


Maintenance Report


  • Completed the maintenance road tour
  • Plowed and salted roads
  • Started the grading schedule
  • Skid steer work-frost boils-signs-culvert
  • Brought rock in on Balsam due to frost boils to make the road passable
  • Picked up and disposed of garbage, mattresses, tires and appliances on roads
  • Did Locates for the replacement of three signs that were down
  • Having a difficult time trying to coordinate with Century Link to do some locates for 911-signs. Contacted the State and they said others are also having the same issues


Motion by Paitl seconded by Rising to approve the maintenance report. Approved.


Road Committee


  • Road Tour – Road tour was completed. Rising estimates that about 9,700 yards of gravel will be needed. It is possible not to do Basswood which would take off about 1,080 yards.


  • Mail Box/Swing Arm/911-Signs – Landon spoke with the post office regarding placement of mailboxes. He stated that the Board has the authority to request residents to move their mailboxes if they are not flush with the edge of the road. The Clerk will write a letter that the Board can send to residents in regards to the placement of their mailboxes. Landon suggested that when a new home permit is applied for, that we install a swing-arm post at the same time that we install the 911-sign. Landon suggested that we charge $25.00 to install the swing-arm post. The current price that we charge for the swing-arm post is $100.00. Landon stated that we add the additional $125.00 to the cost of what we charge to install the 911-Blue Signs. He stated the total amount be $375.00. (The actual total amount would be $350.00 not $375.00). ($225.00 + $125.00 = $350.00). The Clerk will talk to the County in regards to the County collecting an additional $25.00 for installation of the swing-arm post. The Clerk will then write a new resolution in regards to new home permits for the cost and installation price of the 911-signs and the swing-arm post.


  • Frost Boils – Frost boils on 487th off of Alpine need attention as soon as possible. Also, frost has started to bubble on 520th. The most expensive frost boil to fix will probably be on Balsam. The Board approved that frost boils on 487th and also on Balsam can be taken care of now. The road committee will work with our contractor to prioritize which frost boils need attention and they will bring this list of recommendations to the next Board Meeting.


  • 480th and 540th – Contractor asked when we are giving up 480th and taking over 540 We are taking over 540th on June 1. Sutcliff advised that he needs to get the road prepped. Meis stated that she did hear from Royalton in January stating that Royalton asked her if the Board was interested in cost sharing. We did send a letter to them stating that we would share the cost with them and asked Royalton to get a cost and to let us know, but that we have not heard back from them.


  • Road Repairs – Mell asked the road committee to bring to the next board meeting, a list, in order of priority, their recommended repair projects


  • Anchor Avenue –Joe Triplett offered his opinion/suggestions in an email as follows; 1. The cheapest option would be to reclaim and grade the road in-place. The cost would be approximately $35,000. 2. Two-inch of bituminous overlay with a 1” gravel shoulder at an estimated cost of $135,000. 3. Three-inch bituminous overlay, which involves 2 lifts of 1.5” and adding a 1” gravel shoulder. He states this would be a better ride. The estimated cost is $200,000. The 4th option would be to reclaim, grade, and pave, which is what was done on the other part of Anchor. The estimated cost for this is $300,000.


  • County is going to grind/pave the south part of County Road 4 down to 10. If we grind Anchor Ave we may be able to get a lower price with the same contractor.
  • Fenske (MN Association Attorney) recommends that we should get the residents to form an SSD or that the residents should come to the board with a petition so that we are not forcing anything on them. Mell suggested that we guide the residents through this process and recommends that we prepare bidding documents at the same time.


  • It was recommend that we ask Chilson to be a representative to talk to the other residents on Anchor Avenue to let them know that we are working on cost for repairing Anchor Avenue. Iskierka will pull up the petition that was used with the Alpine Avenue residents and modify it for the Anchor Avenue residents. Meis suggested that we get a recommendation from the engineers and notify the residents that we are thinking about proceeding on doing some sort of action.


Motion by Mell seconded by Rising that we engage Short Elliot Hendrickson Inc (SEH) to review Anchor Avenue with the Board, provide us their recommendations and a proposal to provide engineering services and to prepare bid-able documents for a project to pave Anchor Avenue. Mell will call SEH to set up a meeting and will then send an email to the Board. Approved.


  • Blue Herron – Meis and Iskierka had a Joint Powers meeting with Fish Lake Township regarding Blue Herron. They want to repair the road. They want permission to hire their engineer to come out and give us a recommendation, estimate on the cost to pave the road and apply for a grant with the DNR to pave the road. If we get a grant, the road will not be paved until the year 2021. Engineering cost is not included with the grant. Any engineering work will have to be paid separately.
  • Iskierka inquired about what we will do to maintain/repair Blue Herron in the meantime. It was explained that this road was part of the road tour and that we will maintain the road and will be crack sealing. It was recommended that we get an estimate on Blue Herron for cutting and patching. Rising will contact Fahrner to get an estimate.


Motion by Rising seconded by Landon to approve paying 38% of the cost of engineering for Blue Herron, with Fish Lake Township picking up 62% of the cost. Our 38% is not to exceed $3,000 and it includes the engineering cost for the estimate and writing the grant proposal. Approved.




  • Abandoned Balsam Culvert – Contractor mentioned that there is a 30” concrete culvert and that 20’ of it has separated and has opened up at the road shoulder. Contactor contacted the County Engineer about the culvert, County Engineer looked into the record and the only thing he found was that the road was changed to a different angle and the culvert could be removed. It was recommended that we remove culvert.


Budget Committee


  • Budget Report – Based on comments from some residents, the Budget Committee will work with the Treasurer to put together an easier to read budget printout.

Contract Committee


  • Maintenance Contract-3-year – Mell asked for a motion to approve the 1.4 % increase in rates for option year-3 as printed. Mell will prepare the actual contract document.


Motion by Mell seconded by Paitl to approve the rates for option year 3 as printed. Approved.


  • Contractor Use of Town Hall Garage – It was at the Boards discretion to offer making the Town Hall property/garage available for contractors to use.


Motion by Mell seconded by Rising to continue the practice offering the usage of the Town Hall property/garage to its contractors. Approved. Landon abstained from voting.


  • Road Contract – The Board discussed updating the 2-year contract with Muddy Gap Hollow Inc. Mell will review the steps that are needed to update this contract. It will be put on the April 2019 agenda to discuss the renewal contract with Muddy Gap Hollow Inc.


Policy Committee


  • Tracking Hours – Mell asked how do we want to handle tracking hours within each job description. He mentioned that we discussed this awhile back and it was never resolved. He wants the Board to come up with a plan to resolve this concern. He asked if we prefer to not have to track hours and if so, then he will take a look at the policy and add some language to the policy and specify what would be additional pay i.e. special meetings, training, etc. The Board agreed with Mell’s suggestion. Mell will take our current policy and create a draft as to what we would consider extra hours.


Old Business


  • Board of Appeal – Approve minutes.


Motion by Landon seconded by Rising to approve the Board of Appeals minutes. Approved.


  • Tracking Hours – See notes above under “Policy Committee.”



  • Gravel – Received two quotes/bids for gravel. Knife River is 7,000 cubic yards, delivered and spread at $13.50 cubic yard with belly dump only. Hass is 7,000 cubic yards, with belly dump at $10.42 a yard.


Motion by Paitl seconded by Rising to approve Hass Construction bid of $10.42 for our gravel. Approved.


New Business


  • Road Tour – See above under “Road Committee”


  • Joint Power Meeting – See above under “Road Committee” “Blue Herron”


  • Plaque for McKenzie – Paitl asked for approval to spend more than the originally approved $100.00 for the plaque and asked if we prefer a cast aluminum or stainless steel plaque. The plaque will say “This shelter is dedicated in memory of Tom McKenzie, a longtime Nessel Township Board Member whose efforts made this shelter area possible.”


Motion by Mell seconded by Rising for Paitl to purchase a stainless steel plaque and is also authorized to spend up to $200.00 on the plaque.


  • Internet into the Town Hall Building – Landon researched some internet options for the Town Hall. He researched two options. 1. Century Link-DSL which will be $79.99 a month + $10 lease fee + tax and a $150.00 install fee-No Contract. 2. Genesis wireless will be $70.00 for a 10-megabites service + $5.00 lease fee, with no tax and no install fee-No Contract. 3. Verizon would be $80.00 a month for unlimited data package with one device for 15 gigabytes of data plus $150.00 purchase for a “hot spot”-2-year contract price. Genesis is looking at expanding fiber into the Township. Landon works for Genesis, so he cannot vote in regards to the internet option. Meis suggested bringing in a “hot spot.” Landon stated that bringing in a “hot spot” for an internet option would not be any cheaper. To add a “hot spot” to the Treasurer’s or the Deputy Clerk’s own personal phone plans if they have the unlimited data package, Landon stated it would be $20.00 per month. Mell stated that we should be able to back up our records on an external hard-drive at the Town Hall. Mell suggested that we get prices and present this to the annual board meeting and let the residents vote on which service they prefer. Mell will get price quotes from Verizon and we will discuss at a future Board meeting.


  • Culverts – Iskierka said we are getting low on culverts and he would like to order about six 15” culverts. Treasurer Dillner stated that if you order a certain amount, that you can get free shipping. Board agreed that Iskierka should order a couple more culverts if it will get us free shipping.


Motion by Landon seconded by Rising that Iskierka can purchase culverts up to the free shipping limit.


  • Addition of Salt and Sand Shed – Mell stated that at the Annual Meeting and at a previous Board Meeting, that a resident had discussed the Townships inability to keep salt, sand and trap rock in separate bays. Mell is proposing that we get a price proposal for a 2-bay salt/sand shed and that we put that as a line item on the levy for the Annual Meeting. He stated it is a benefit to the Township and that we have space for one and it would also add to our ability to maintain the roads. He is asking for the Boards approval to get a couple of independent price proposals for a 2-bay shed. The Board agreed and gave their approval.


  • Special Closed Meeting – Meis proposed a Special Closed Meeting to discuss personnel. Meis asked when the Board would be available for this meeting. Iskierka stated that we have to post for 5-days. It was determined to have the meeting on May 30th at 6:00 pm at the Town Hall.

Motion by Rising seconded by Landon to adjourn at 10:06 pm. Approved.