WILMA TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS’ MEETING MAY 6, 2015
Chairman Glen Williamson called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. at the Wilma Town hall with the Pledge of Allegiance. Also present were Supervisors Mike McCullen and Gary Vink, Treasurer Patrice Winfield, Clerk Paul Raymond, and Eldon Schmedeke.
Patrice said she will mount a locked mailbox at the end of her driveway for claims, and that any claims deposited after 1 p.m. the day before a board meeting will not be paid for a month. She has to do this because the new CTAS program is more complicated and so she can enter bills before the meeting. Payroll claims only can still be presented at the meetings. Fire department mail can also be deposited in the box.
Paul read the record of the Board of Reorganization and the April board meeting. Mike moved to approve; Gary seconded.
OLD BUSINESS: Schmedeke Lane: Eldon took the floor to appeal to the board to acquire enough right of way easement so that the first part of Schmedeke Lane can be built to county specs and be 66′ wide. An easement will need to be acquired from Barbara Jensen on the east side. Schmedeke Lane is now just 33′ wide, 16′ from the center of the road each side. Glen said that township roads do not necessarily have to be 66′ wide. Mike said he wants to talk with Barbara Jensen in a friendly way, if we can avoid forcing her to sell land. She may be willing to grant the easement.
Schmedeke Lane Extension: Mark can start spending money according to the directions of the county guidelines to build up the extension, up to $10,000. This money can’t be used for the first part of Schmedeke Lane. Eldon said there are a couple of curves that should be straightened and he has marked them with stakes.
Board of Review Certification: Officers signed the certificate; only Gary and Glen participated in the phone conference. There were no new appeals so no changes were made at the phone-conference meeting, but Kelly said one of Vink’s properties should be reduced as no road access.
Spring Short Course: Glen shared the info on “Understanding and Working With Your Local Fire Department.” Glen said he thought doing a joint powers with the fire department would be a better course than now. Mike said the fire department learned their lesson from the garbage board, formerly the Tri-township Disposal District. The district had built up a large war chest, and two townships were allowed to join with full equal votes by donating only $5,000. That’s why Wilma Township gets 3 votes on the Board of Directors, and the other two towns get one vote each, since when they joined, the Duxbury VFD already had a large financial balance. Mike said expenses are increasing and that the contributions of the three townships will likely need to go up. The new Eagle Head station requires expensive heating, and the department is buying trucks and PPE gear and other equipment to upgrade our readiness.
Glen also reported on “Culvert Installation and Maintenance,” and Paul reported on “Insurance Do’s and Don’t’s” and protecting township assets by internal controls, and “Revenue: Source and Placement.”
NEW BUSINESS: Little Tamarack Lake Road: Solutions and Remedies: Glen has been fielding many complaints from the Eric Holters over the condition of Little Tamarack Lake Road. They have even threatened to sue the township. Gary said some of the ruts on the road were caused by their delivery trucks. Mike said they should drive north of Duxbury and see the condition of county roads that are almost impassable due to frost boils. One solution Glen had suggested is Wilma annexing the Holter’s property for Wilma Township so we can get some of the tax revenue for the road. Ogema township refuses to help us with any money at all, even though the Holters live in their township. Eldon said that when Ogema built the Sky Blue Waters Drive, he and Joe Vink and Ron McCullen and Gary Vink had insisted that they extend the road to reach the Holters, so they weren’t dependent on Wilma’s road. It was a very short easement they needed, but they refused. Both the County and the Township Attorneys (Reese Frederickson and Kyle Hartnett) said that Wilma can annex or legally have the Holter’s land moved into Wilma Township. Glen said we could let Ogema know we have this option, to maybe get them to help with the road. Mike said he opposes annexation because it will just increase the demands to treat this road better than we treat other township roads. He directed Paul to ask the Assessor how much in township property taxes the Holter’s pay, to see what difference it would make for us; also to find out who owns the other properties in Ogema bordering Wilma and the properties just inside our border. Gary also opposes annexation;
Turnaround on Little Tamarack Lake Road: Glen got a letter from Dave Persons who has a cabin in Ogema Twp. next to the Holters, asking for a turnaround: “I would like to see if it is possible to widen the turnaround at the end of Little Tamarack Road. It would benefit the road plow driver in the winter and summer. Currently, he needs to push straight onto my land and back up to turn around. Also, people would not need to stop to turn around; they could just make a circle. This benefits me, because I’d rather passersby not stop on my property to turn around.
“I removed the old shed/cabin and cut down many of the trees that were dead by this area – a big, ongoing project – so the end of the road is open. The only issue are some stumps. There is some brush and dead trees on the stumps now that can be pushed back onto my property, if this is something you are willing to do. I plan to block off the open areas at the end of the road so someone in a ATV or car does not just drive around the gate if closed.” He enclosed a map and claims part of our road is on his land.” Dave Persons-Home Owner, 46825 Little Tamarack Road, Sandstone, MN 651-278-8777. He is on the west side of the road just before Holters in Ogema Twp. Issue tabled for now.
2015 Road Inspection: Will be Wednesday, May 20, at 10 a.m. at the Town Hall or the store.
County Sales of Tax-forfeited Lands: Sale scheduled for September. In Wilma, 32.0041.000, W ½ of NE ¼ of 7-42-17, 80 acres. This is at the end of the Vink Road, and where Doody has placed barricades. The County allowed Carlson Timber to build a logging road into this land. Townships have first right to buy properties. The Board is not interested; no response required.
New Dosey Billing for Heller Drive: Gary directed Paul to bill New Dosey for some flagging and culvert work on Heller Drive on April3 and 13: Gary 1 hour culvert @ $18, half $9; 1½ hour flagging @ $27 = half, $13.50; Mark Pallow 2 hours flagging @ $15 = $30, half 15. Total bill $37.50.
Backup Grader Operator: Mike said we need to have a trained back-up grader operator. Ben is often busy. Mike moved that Gary be appointed back-up operator if he does not have to get a driver’s license. The grader is not licensed.
Duxbury VFD Pancake Breakfast: Glen moved to allow the fire department to use the hall on Sunday, May 24, for the breakfast. Gary seconded. Passed.
Treasurer’s Report and Bills: Patrice presented the list of claims and payroll claims for the Supervisors’ inspection and approval, and gave the Treasurer’s Report (all attached). Bills totaled $5,800.03. Glen moved to pay all the bills and to approve the report, and to transfer $5,800 from savings to checking. Gary seconded. Passed.
Diesel Fuel: Mike asked that the record record that the fire dept. took 15 gallons of diesel fuel from the township.
Paul Raymond, Clerk
attested to by: Glen Williamson, Chair
WILMA TOWNSHIP BOARD OF APPEAL AND EQUALIZATION, APRIL 6, 2015
Chairman Glen Williamson called the meeting to order at 1 pm at the Wilma Town Hall with the Pledge of Allegiance. County Assessor Kelly Schroeder and Wilma Assessor Bob Brewster attended, plus Supervisors Mike McCullen and Gary Vink and Clerk Paul Raymond, plus Pat and Helena Story.
Kelly said that Wilma had no sales in the period from Oct. 2013 through September, 2014, so property values had to be determined by sales in Arna and New Dosey, which had a .38% increase in values determined by new sales, and a ½ of 1% increase in parcels over 34 acres.
Kelly said the statute states that valuation notices for 2016 have to be mailed ten days before the Board of Appeal, and since there were only seven days today’s meeting can’t be adjourned but must be continued after voters have another opportunity to appeal their taxes in Sandstone April 14 or at the Courthouse April 15. Then the board can meet again to continue the meeting or have a conference call with all the Supervisors and Clerk and Assessors after these appeals. Mike moved that the Board meet by conference call on Wednesday, April 22, at noon. Gary seconded.
Pat and Helena Story, Parcel 32.5084.000: Pat said he didn’t understand why his property taxes have increased so much since he moved here permanently. He wanted to know how the tax values are determined, and what he is getting for his taxes. He doesn’t feel he is getting the services he pays for, e.g. the very inadequate warning reflectors on McDermott Creek dropoff. Bob said Pat’s tax valuation did go up by $9,000 in 2015, from $160,000 to $169,000. Bob said the county had valued his home as fake (half) log siding, when in fact it is whole logs, which increased the value. Also a new cement slab patio increased the value by $570, which meant a $5 tax increase. The increase is not retroactive, so Pat was paying lower taxes than he should have for the past 5 years. Kelly said Pat and Helena’s home is not homesteaded and asked why. Pat said when he first moved here he also had a home in Washington County that was homesteaded, so he wasn’t allowed to homestead the Wilma home. Kelly said homesteading no longer cuts taxes in half, but Pat would save $282 in taxes if he homesteads, and she gave him the application forms to do it. This also can’t be made retroactive, but he will have this discount every year from now on. Gary moved that there be no change in Pat and Helena’s statement property value except for the homesteading credit. Mike seconded. Passed.
Mike McCullen: Mike said he isn’t contesting his value, but he thinks the arbitrary categories of real logs/fake logs doesn’t take into account the great difference in value of a whole log home make from redwood or cedar or oak logs versus poplar logs, although they are taxed the same. Bob said there would be too many categories if they tried to distinguish the kind of wood.
Kelly said the Board of County Commissioners are holding their meetings in various towns to give the taxpayers opportunities to voice their concerns and ask questions. The next community meeting will be the 4th Tuesday of May at the Duquette Community Center in Kerrick. They will also be holding them in Sandstone and Hinckley.
Glen moved that the Board of Appeal be continued on Wednesday, April 22 at 12 noon by conference call to vote on any appeals made at the two county Boards of Appeal. Mike seconded. Kelly will call all the Supervisors and the Clerk to set up the conference call. No adjournment.
APRIL 22, CONFERENCE CALL CONTINUATION OF MEETING: Assessor Kelly Schroeder reconvened the Board of Equalization and Review by conference call with Glen Williamson, Gary Vink and Paul Raymond.
There were no more appeals at the courthouse or by letter since our meeting. Gary asked about two Vink parcels and how the agricultural tax values went up $6,500 in value. Kelly said part of this increase is that all river-front or lakefront property went up to $30 per foot, on both sides of the river. Kelly said that one of Gary’s parcels would be reduced because there is no road access to the property. Gary said their land in Sections 5 and 8 have been clear-cut, and should get a reduction in value. Kelly said they do not consider trees in property values, whether it’s forested or clear cut, only if it’s high-ground or swamp.
Kelly reminded Paul to have the Board of Review certification form filled out at the May 6 board meeting.
Glen moved to adjourn; Gary seconded. Meeting adjourned at 12:30 p.m.
Paul Raymond, Clerk
NOTICE WILMA TOWNSHIP: Due to insufficient time for Wilma taxpayers to appeal their 2016 property evaluations, they may appeal at Sandstone City Hall on Tuesday, April 14, from 2 to 4 p.m., or at the Pine Co. Courthouse on April 15thfrom 2 to 4 p.m. Wilma’s Board of Appeal held on April 6th has been continued to Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at 12 noon by conference call of the Supervisors and Assessors to vote on any appeals. Parties wishing to be part of this conference call notify Clerk Paul Raymond 320-245-2579.
WILMA TOWNSHIP BOARD OF REORGANIZATION AND BOARD OF SUPERVISORS’ MEETING 4-1-2015
Chairman Glen Williamson called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance. Also present were Supervisors Mike McCullen and Gary Vink, Treasurer Patrice Winfield, Clerk Paul Raymond, and Jeff and Jeane GrandPre, Alden Shute, and Eldon Schmedeke.
Paul read the record of the March meeting. Glen said that Toni Williamson will also be attending the short course on Friday. With this correction, Gary moved to approve; Mike seconded. Gary said he will not be going to the short course after all.
Former Supervisor Joseph E. Vink: Glen took a minute to acknowledge the great debt the town owes to Joseph Vink who died earlier this week. He was Chairman of the Board of Supervisors for decades and one of the founders of the Duxbury Volunteer Fire Department. Glen asked that we observe a minute of silence in honor of Joe.
BOARD OF REORGANIZATION: Mike nominated Glen to be Chairman of the Board for another year; Gary seconded. Passed. Glen nominated Gary to be Vice Chair; Mike seconded. Passed. Mike moved that the board approve all the wages and meetings pay and election judge pay that the voters authorized at the annual meeting. Gary seconded. Passed. Glen moved that Northview Bank be our bank of deposit; that the Pine County Courier and the Evergreen be our papers of publication; that the Duxbury Store and Wilma Town Hall be our posting places. Mike seconded. Passed. Mike moved that we keep the charge for snowplowing private drives the same as the 2014-15 season; Glen seconded; passed.
Donations to Civic Organizations: Mike moved that Wilma township enter into a contract with the Seven County Senior Federation, with the Old School Arts Center, and with the Pine County Historical Museum for services and to pay them $100 each, as approved by the voters. Glen seconded. Gary voted nay; Passed. Alden Shute said he and other voters have expressed a fear that this could snowball to supporting dozens of organizations. He would like to have the board set a limit on how many we support and for how much. Paul said we have never had any requests from anyone but these three. Glen moved that Wilma Township support just three civic organizations and that our donations not exceed $100 each. Mike seconded. Gary voted nay; Passed.
OLD BUSINESS: Pine County Township Officers’ Meeting. Paul gave a report on the meeting last Saturday. Glen said it was very well attended (over 85 officers) and much good information given out. Glen, Toni, Patrice and Paul all attended. Highlights: Jeff Nelson, new Co. Sheriff, gave out direct line to his office: 320-591-1409, and email firstname.lastname@example.org. He is hiring new deputies and moving to 12 hour shifts and better FTO training. He wants to attend another Wilma Board Meeting.
Kelly Schroeder, Land Services Director, will draw up clear guidelines for recording documents to avoid repeat rejections. Assessor training will be only online (Twp. Association still subsidizes training to $1,000). The Twp. Assn. will still offer Board of Appeal training.
Jason Rarick, new Representative: Email email@example.com. He wants to attend a Wilma Board Meeting later this summer.
Steve Hallan, Commissioner: Pine Co. has aprox. 700 miles of County Roads and 700 miles of Township Roads. Proposals to have county-wide zoning. Some townships like Wilma do not want any zoning, and the county has to balance these concerns. Not all towns and districts will be zoned the same.
Lenny Bonander: New hospital will cost Sandstone $2 million. $230 K for 22.5 acre campus; $300 K for utilities and road upgrade. $250 from State, $500 K. from Sandstone. Bills in house and senate to get more state funding for infrastructure and a new bridge. High Speed Rail: Concern that corridor will need costly upgrade and will need federal subsidies. $400 Million partnership.
Brent Grundmeier, DNR: Invasive species, mandatory training before boats can be moved from lake to lake, can be done online. Bad wolf problem now and control taken from state and farmers. Only the DNR can remove nuisance wolves. Trying to get legislation for reimbursement for livestock. 246 wolves harvested in 2014 before Federal ban went back into place in Minnesota. May have restricted deer season and lottery this fall as very few deer.
Retro-reflectivity Sign Ordinance: The deadline for compliance with retro-reflectivity has been removed, and we only have to comply as we replace signs.
East Central Regional Development Corporation: Frank Grundemeier from Dell Grove will not be on the Township Officers Board after next year so can’t serve on the ECRDC Board, and Glen was elected unanimously to serve for life on the board starting in June. Five counties are included, Pine, Kanabek, Isanti, Mille Lacs, and Chisago.
Schmedeke Lane Extension: Eldon asked that the board agree that the land bordering the east and west sides of the existing Schmedeke Lane have a 33′ easement both directions from the center of the road, for utilities. He has also said that a slope and ditch easement be provided on the west side of Schmedeke Lane. Eldon also asked the board to pass a resolution stating that “Be it resolved that anyone cutting or harvesting timber for market shall clear cut all trees 3” or larger in diameter within 33′ from the center of any township road they are logging on, for ditch and slope and easement purposes”. The board thanked Eldon for his input and participation in the meeting.
Town Hall: Alden said he loves our town hall, and only realized at the annual meeting how really nice it is. He said if we invested a few thousand into properly blowing some insulation into the ceiling and upgrading the furnace we could make it more comfortable in the winters. Paul urged him to attend our annual Wilma Fall Fest so he could see the hall with a band on the stage and people dancing and enjoying great food and entertainment.
North Pine Hospital District: Glen said Fran Levings has asked to speak to the board at our May meeting to encourage our township to become a member of the district. Glen said he approved this. Gary said we have voted on this several times and it has always been defeated.
NEW BUSINESS: New computer and printer. Patrice and Glen got CTAS V.8 loaded on our new computer and a new wireless printer hooked up. They were able to migrate all the data from our old CTAS V.7, and Paul was also able to download CTAS V8 on both his computers and all the old records and data migrated with Patrice’s flash drive. Patrice said the new program is more difficult to use and it will take longer to write all the checks tonight.
Treasurer’s Report and Bills: Patrice gave the Treasurer’s Report (attached) and also presented a list of all the claims and payroll for approval (also attached). The bills total $3,055. Gary moved to approve her report, to pay all the claims, and to transfer $3,000 from savings into checking.
Gary moved to adjourn the meeting; Mike seconded. Meeting adjourned at 10 p.m.
Paul Raymond, Clerk
Attested: Glen Williamson, Chair