Council Minutes, May 4, 2020

Posted: May 4, 2020

City of LeRoy MN – Council Meeting Minutes, May 4, 2020

A regular meeting of the LeRoy City Council was called to order by Mayor Brian Thiel on Monday, May 4, 2020, at 6:30 PM at the LeRoy Community Center with the following members present:  Mayor Brian Thiel, Council Members Ashley Huntley, Jan Whisler (by telephone), Harold Shipman, Daisie Fox, Maintenance Employee John Jones, and City Clerk Patty White.
Also attending: Axel Gumbel, Kathy Stern, Kathi Bunne, Deputy Sawyer Weiss, and Michelle Knode.  All stood and recited the Pledge of Allegiance.

Consent Agenda:

  • Huntley questioned about the hours being worked at the public library since the library is closed to the public. Thiel reported the Library Board had voted to allow the librarian to work regular hours behind closed doors during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Shipman noted that many books needed to be rearranged and shelved due to some new shelving that was placed.  White noted that some libraries have reopened with curb-side pickup.  Could this be done here?  Huntley expressed concern that full wages are being paid with the library not being open; she felt the city could be riding a fine line with the stay at home orders that ordered libraries and other facilities to be closed.  Fox questioned what could be done.  Thiel noted he will take these concerns to the next Library Board meeting.
  • Thiel requested to remove Written Reports from the consent agenda, so these can be discussed separately.
  • Motion by Huntley to approve the Consent Agenda, items A, B, and D. Second by Shipman.  Motion carried 5-0.
  • Thiel noted that some important things happen each month that the general public doesn’t always know about. Jones reported that ‘flushable wipes’ should not be flushed.  Much work has been done on the streets with pothole patching and street sweeping.  Jones noted that two generators get put in place right away at the time of a power outage; things are then monitored at the well house and lift stations.  White reported the annual audit has been done remotely this year.  Whisler reported that Audrey McCarthy has been hired as the new administrator at Wildwood Grove.
  • Motion by Thiel to approve the Consent Agenda, item C. Second by Huntley. Motion carried 5-0.

No one present had anything to bring forward during Public Input Time.

During Standing Committee Reports:

  • Shipman reported the Shooting Star Bike Ride has been cancelled for 2020.
  • Thiel reported the Library Board did not meet in April.
  • Huntley reported the Ambulance Board did not meet in April.

Police Report:

  • Deputy Sawyer Weiss gave an oral police report. He noted he had written some speeding tickets, done some welfare checks, and assisted with some medical calls.  Council thanked Deputy Weiss for his time.

Volunteer of the Month Recognition:

  • Shipman and Fox read the nomination papers for Kathy Stern and Kathi Bunne. Both ladies were recognized and congratulated for all they do for the community.

Land Use Permits:

  • Council reviewed two land use permits. Both permits were for the construction of decks.  Thiel noted he had spoken with Michelle Knode about the width of her deck.  It was determined that she would have to build her deck with an eight foot width to comply with setback requirements from the front of her house; she had initially wanted to build a deck with a ten foot width from the front of her house.  Thiel also noted in the future he would like to see all the land use permits prior to a council meeting.  One of these permits was submitted on the day of the council meeting.
  1. Lots 18, 19, 20, Block 23, Original Village, Tamara Kelley-build a deck
  2. Lots 5 & W 40’ Lot 4 & N 10’ Adj Alley, Original Village, Michelle Knode-build a deck
  • Motion by Huntley, second by Fox to approve both permits with the correction of the width to eight feet for the Knode permit. Motion carried 5-0.

Communications File:

  • There was nothing in the Communications File for council review.

Street Patching Proposal-Heartland Asphalt:

  • Whisler reported he had talked to Colton from Heartland Asphalt; Heartland plans to begin the East County Road project hopefully by the end of May. Heartland wants warmer temperatures since the asphalt gets transported quite a few miles.
  • Whisler also updated council on a quote received from Heartland Asphalt for other street patching around town. Two locations on the quote are for repairing asphalt due to water main breaks.  Whisler noted he does not see an issue with the street area on South Everett Street by Northern Country Coop.  Whisler reported NCC pays over $114,000 in property taxes each year; Whisler commented the city should send them a thank you for having their business here in LeRoy.  Whisler also noted that a lot of money has been put into the 100 block of West Read Street, and the street is still in poor repair.
  • Jones suggested having the council set a budget for street repairs and allow Jones to work with Heartland Asphalt to be able to repair as many problem areas as the funds will allow.
  • Thiel noted there are more problem areas in town than what is being covered in this quote. Thiel was not in favor of signing this contract.  Thiel was in favor of having the council set a budget for what they are willing to spend for street repairs.
  • Whisler felt this would give Heartland Asphalt some leeway to get streets repaired.
  • Thiel noted the public works guys have done a good job with the pothole patching.
  • Motion by Thiel that the City issues as open ended request to Heartland Asphalt to furnish to the City 3” of asphalt at $29 per square yard up to approximately 900 square yards at locations to be determined by the City and authorize the 135 square yards of asphalt at $63 per square yard of 9” asphalt on South Everett adjacent to the driveways for the scale and grain bins to repair/replace damaged asphalt pavement from turning trucks and to reinforce remaining areas of the street pavement likely to be needed to alleviate future such damages and having all this completed when the East County Road project is done. Second by Huntley.  On a roll call of votes, all council members voted aye.  The motion carried 5-0.

Water & Sewer:

  • Jones reported the pumps at all three lift stations are in good repair.

Parks & Recreation:

  • White reported the requested signs have been installed near the playground structures. Council members noted they have seen some activity in the parks, but they have not seen any activity on the play structures.

Speed Limit Signs:

  • Jones will research on how to adjust the speed limit signs. Thiel noted these signs are the same as those that are installed in Grand Meadow and Racine.

Nuisance Properties:

  • Whisler reported he heard that some residents are keeping chickens within the city limits. Huntley felt the council needs to be consistent with everyone; the council cannot pick and choose who this ordinance gets enforced on.  Thiel noted there is an ordinance in place that does not allow chickens.  Hearing no motion, Thiel noted the ordinance will stay as it is and not allow chickens within the city limits.
  • It was reported there has been some problems with a pit bull tied to the back of the building at 107 West Main Street. The piles of junk and debris have not been cleaned up.  It was the consensus of the council to have a letter sent by the city attorney to address the piles of junk and debris.  Council stood ready to clean up this property if the attorney letter does not spur action.

Other Items:

  • Thiel questioned about Summer Fest 2020. White noted Summer Fest is planned by the LeRoy Commercial Club.  The Club officers have been in contact and are monitoring the COVID-19 situation.  A decision about Summer Fest 2020 will be made in the coming weeks.
  • Due to some illegal dumping, a motion was made by Huntley, second by Fox to authorize the purchase of another trail camera to be installed at the city dump. Motion carried 5-0.

Being no further business to come before the council, the meeting was adjourned on a motion by Huntley, second by Shipman at 7:58 PM.

– Brian Thiel, Mayor

– Patty A. White, City Clerk-Treasurer