WILMA TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS’ MEETING DECEMBER 7, 2011
Chairman Glen Williamson called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance. Also present: Supervisors Gary Vink and Mike McCullen, Treasurer Patrice Winfield, Clerk Paul Raymond, and Eldon and Marjorie Schmedeke.
Paul read the record of the November meeting. Garyclarified the record that he was not proposing closing off the chimney pipe to prevent flies. Paul amended this. Eldon said it is Dave Steven, from Pine Co., not Steiben. Steiben retired a couple of years ago. This was amended. With these corrections, Mike moved to approve the record;Gary seconded.
OLD BUSINESS: Duncan Road: We had some bills and claims that Road Manager Mark Pallow gaveGary, with some information on what roads the work was done on. Duane Glienke put in a culvert onNorth Duncan Road; Hopkins Gravel put gravel onN. Duncan Road and some on roads with FEMA-covered flood damage; Little Falls Machine billed for grader parts. Because we could not determine how much of the work is on thePete Anderson Range Line Road, and how much to deduct from FEMA, we will wait until the January, 2012 meeting to get a report from Mark.
Pete Anderson Road: Eldon asked for the floor to speak to the Supervisors about the conditions on thePete Anderson Road and to show photographs. There is a washout about 1 foot deep. Mark lowered a culvert but it is too small, only 18”. He said the culvert Arna put in was 32”. Eldon said he has no complaints about the work Mark has done, only that the culvert is too small.
State MAT Conference: Glen thanked the Board for sending him to the Arrowwood conference. He said there was so much information, especially on conflict of interest issues with elected officers. He said there were 310 officers from 60 counties and 154 townships inMinnesota. Other topics were Board of Equalization training for Supervisors; year-end reports; bond financing; taxing; wind energy. They awarded $1,000 scholarships to 4Minnesota teens. They urged more officers to attend the District MAT Conference. Glen said it is very important that township officers attend trainings so we are aware of our duties and responsibilities. Ignorance of the law is not defensible, and other townships have been sued.
Road Sign Retroreflectivity Requirements: By January 22, 2012, the Board must implement a method to maintain federal and state minimum levels of retroreflectivity for Wilma road signs. We have until January, 22, 2015 to replace any warning or ground-mounted guide signs, if we have any, and until January 22, 2018 to make any changes in our road signs. We have to make a plan for how we will comply with the requirements and what method we will use to assess reflectivity. We can choose the visual assessment method to see how reflective our signs are. There was a discussion of who has jurisdiction over and ownership of the road signs in our township, us or the County. The County has purchased and put up the road signs as part of the 911 program, and they have replaced damaged road signs. All the stop-signs are at intersections with County roads, so we believe they own these signs. Minimum-maintenance signs are ours. Glen directed Paul to designate allWilmaTownship signs on the township road map we make for the gas-tax report by the January meeting. Also for him to find out from theCountyEngineers who owns what signs in Wilma.
Storm-damage tree removal: Glen said Kari Holter said they were very pleased with the progress on Little Tamarack Lake Road. Mike said he is almost done, except for chipping. He wanted clarity on the issue of the township wood pile. He said inArnaTownship when people want wood from the blowdown, they are asked to help cut and load the wood and they get some delivered to their homes. Mike said he got a letter from Paul saying he didn’t want to do a similar deal with Mike because he said it wouldn’t be fair to other township citizens. Unlike Arna, our township FEMA contract states that the salvaged timber belongs to the township for the fair and equitable distribution to interested citizens, after the people who own land next to the right-of-ways have an opportunity to claim their wood if they want it. Mike said Paul told him it was because of no insurance that he didn’t want to work for wood. Paul confirmed he said this. Mike said Paul wrote the contract. Paul said it was in a conference-call with our attorney, Robert Ruppe and Chairman Glen Williamson, but it is part of his duty as an officer to look out for the interests of all the citizens, and to do what is fair and right. Paul said that the timeline of the salvage wood issue goes back to September 13, when Mike told him after fire training that he had volunteered his land to FEMA for a staging area, when he still thought that Wilma would get the contract and be able to do the work. He told Paul then that he got to keep all of the wood because it was on his land. Paul said he told Mike then that that wouldn’t work, with so many people in our town who burn wood. FEMA Rep Mike Fedoruk said the town could designate any staging area that was not in a wetland. Paul said we could have had the wood staged at the town hall, or on Joe’s or Glienke’s land. Glen said that at the State MAT Conference he spent a lot of time one-on-one with the township attorneys going over the whole issue of conflict of interest and township officers. Glen said they said that NO officer can receive any property from the township while they are in office, which would include any of the township wood. He said we need to notify other township citizens that they can take wood if they need it. Mike said he has to have waivers or affidavits that he will not be responsible or liable for anyone coming on his land. Paul gave him one when he came to get wood; he came 2 or 3 times. Paul said this was after a month had past since we published the notice in the Courier and the Evergreen that people can claim wood salvaged from their rights-of-way land, and the township wood-pile was public knowledge from the meetings and on the website. Only Eldon claimed any wood. Mike asked if it would be a conflict if he brought some firewood to his father’s place for maple-syrup making in the spring. Glen said he has no authority to enforce any conflict-of-interest issues except as one-third of the voting board. If someone wants to make motions, they can vote. The Board directed Paul to post and publish a notice about the availability of the wood, with instructions to contact the Clerk for the waiver and location, and restrictions on what pile is Wilma’s.
Township tape-recorder: Paul indicated that the digital recorder the board told him to buy was being used in the meeting. The records must be retained and are public records. Gary asked if this meant that meetings will be streamed on our website or transcribed. Paul said he will only use the recordings if there is a question about the written record. He still relies on his written minutes. The recordings will be put on CD’s and retained.
NEW BUSINESS: Township CD’s: Patrice said a CD is coming due, for a total of $5,123. Mike moved to authorize Patrice to roll-over the CD.Gary seconded.
Absentee Ballot Election Board: Glen said at the MAT Conference they said that counties will not handle absentee ballots for township elections, and we need to appoint a three-member board of trained judges to count and record absentee ballots. Paul said there is a resolution in the Township News that he inserted “Wilma” into and the names of our proposed election judges: Toni Williamson, Patrice Winfield, and Barb Smith. Glen read the resolution and moved that the town board adopt it. Gary seconded. Passed. Mike moved that these same three judges be appointed to serve for the March 13 election. Gary seconded. Passed.
TREASURER’S REPORT AND CLAIMS: Patrice gave the Treasurer’s report and the December Claims:
Mark Pallow (expenses) $ 243.25
Paul Raymond (expenses) 58.45
Joe Vink (expenses) 75.00
MATIT (Workers’ Comp Premium) 526.00
Duane Glienke 250.00
Little Falls Machine 126.68
Glen Williamson (expenses/MAT Conference) 412.70
Patrice Winfield (expenses) 10.00
Couri-Ruppe Attorneys (FEMA Consultations) 840.00
HopkinsSand and Gravel 10,491.96
Eggan’s Bulk Service 1,157.80
The Evergreen 26.25
Mike McCullen 33.97
Paul Raymond 120.76
Joe Vink 141.52
Glen Williamson 237.06
Gary Vink 323.14
Patrice Winfield 94.35
Mark Pallow 519.40
Total Bills $ 15,736.15
Garymoved to approve the Treasurer’s Report, to pay all the claims, and to transfer $16,000 from savings into checking. Glen seconded. Garymoved to adjourn the meeting; Glen seconded. Meeting adjourned at 9:35 p.m.
Paul Raymond, Clerk