WILMA TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS’ MEETING, WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 4, 2019
Chairman Glen Williamson called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance. Also present: Supervisors Mike McCullen and Gary Vink, Treasurer Patrice Winfield, Clerk Paul Raymond, and Steve Menth, Pat Story, and Grader Operator Alden Shute.
Paul read the record of the November board meeting. Glen asked that the Fall Fest committee be changed to Glen and Paul, not Patrice and Paul. With this change, Gary moved to approve; Mike seconded.
ROAD REPORT: Alden plowed out all the roads after the big December 1st snowfall. Steve said after he plowed Mona Drive that the county came through and put a lot of snow on the entrance and that Alden should go back after the county is done plowing. Alden said they do this to every driveway and road entrance. They usually go out before him, but they go back over and over, sometimes 3 times. He cannot justify the cost of going back to every road entrance and driveway and plow them out again. Alden gave Paul the range-line road data including removing a tree with a chain. Duane Glienke paid his share for his part of the driveway, $250.
Alden said the Little Tamarack Lake Road needs some serious work on the shoreline where erosion has undermined the road. He asked if we could see if we could get some funding and planning help from Pine Soil and Water. Paul will write them.
OLD BUSINESS: Supervisors or Board Members Doing Work for the Township: Mike had said we need a resolution for any officer to do work for the township and moved that the board adopt “A Resolution Authorizing Contract with Interested Officer Under Minn. Stat. #471.88 Sub. 5” covering all township officers in case we need to do any outside work for the township. Gary seconded. Passed. Glen and Paul signed it.
Relationship between Wilma Township and the Contract with DVFD, Inc. Pat asked if there was any information regarding the Duxbury VFD responding to areas outside of our townships without reimbursement. The Duxbury VFD’s proposal to Ogema and the Band was for $1,000 from Ogema and $2,000 from the tribe for medical responses; they offered $1,500 for both. They asked for a list of medical calls in Ogema. We asked the MAT Attorneys if we can share this information with them without violating HIPAA privacy laws. Steve Fenske, MAT Attorney, says: “HIPPA does not apply to the fire department as a service provider. If you look here (https://www.cms.gov/Regulations-and-Guidance/Administrative-Simplification/HIPAA-ACA/AreYouaCoveredEntity) emergency service providers are not “covered entities” in HIPAA which is aimed at health care providers, insurers, and the third-parties they use to handle patient data. That’s not you. Even if your fire service was covered by HIPAA, there are exceptions for billing purposes, which is why the neighboring township needs billing information from you.” Chief Mike McCullen will meet again with the Board of Supervisors of Ogema Township, and Glen said that Mike and the fire department should handle any agreement or make any decisions so our townships aren’t carrying the whole load. Mike said there are going to be some changes in the fire department that he will explain when the VFD Board makes their decision.
2019-2020 Snowplowing: The deadline for payments to enroll for snowplowing was November 6th, but one person said she was out of checks and asked on Nov. 26 if she could still sign up. The Board has the discretion to make any decisions regarding snowplowing and Glen moved to accept her check; Gary seconded. Last year a person was two months late and the board then said that was too much time.
County Assessment Takeover: There was a meeting on Tuesday, November 26 of the Pine County Commissioners with Assessor Lorri Houtsma and Auditor Kelly Schroeder explaining the proposal to convert all property assessments in Pine County to the county, not private assessors. Our assessor Bob Brewster only plans to work two more years at most, and this proposal won’t go into effect for at least one year, so for us it’s kind of moot. Mike said that Bob is willing to get all the required training to be certified for commercial assessments if the county did not take it over, although he had told us before that he was retiring and could not afford the training. They showed several examples of inequitable assessing by private assessors (not ours), so some people are being assessed too little and burdening the rest. Wilma Supervisors Glen Williamson and Mike McCullen both spoke. There was a lot of concern about a big-government power grab taking one more jurisdiction from the people, and Kelly and Lorri and the board defended their position. David Minke says that at least for two years we will pay no more than we pay now. Mike said the county wants to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on hiring more assessors and towns are going to get it in the rear. Glen said the Assessors Office could go to towns that are being unfairly assessed too low and suggest they fire their private assessor. Paul said they are benefiting so why should they change? Glen had a resolution to the county opposing any county takeover of assessing and moved that the board adopt it and send it to the Assessor and the Auditor. Mike seconded. Passed.
County Septic Administration: Gale Kespohl is resigning as our septic ordinance administrator as of January 1, 2020. Auditor Kelly Schroeder says, “Wilma Township does not have to have your own inspector/ordinance- you can fall under Pine County’s ordinance (which is the exact same as yours), and Pine County will administer it at no cost to the township.” Denny Schlomka told Patrice that he wants the job, but doesn’t want to do any paperwork. Patrice volunteered to go see Gale and see what is involved in the paperwork and if it’s not too much, she will do it. Paul asked who will pay her? Right now the people who get the permits and inspections pay the township and we pass this on to Gale. If Patrice does the paperwork, he said we should deduct her time from the fee before we pay Denny. Gale will be done January 1, 2020, but there won’t be any system inspections until spring so Mike said to table it until then.
NEW BUSINESS: Presidential Primary 2020: There will be a Presidential Primary Election on March 3, 2020. All expenses will be paid by the county, including judge training and mileage. Each election judge will need one hour of additional hour of training if working the PNP. We will have two in person training dates as follows: February 3, 2020 10:00am-11:00 or February 6, 2020 3:00pm-4:00 pm am at the North Pine Government Center, 1610 State Hwy 23. Patrice, Gary and Paul will get training, and Glen may have someone to judge and be trained.
Filing Period for March, 2020 Township Election: Affidavits of Candidacy must be filed from Tuesday, December 31 until Tuesday January 14. Gary and Paul are up for re-election and both plan to run. Paul and Gary cannot judge at the March Township election, so will need three judges, maybe Patrice, Glen and his interested friend.
Government Help With Snow Removal: Pat said that years ago Gary Pederson and the MAT Attorney Ruth Simpson said there was a program for underfunded snow removal to give towns assistance with this. Paul said that he has never heard this at any short course or training. Glen said maybe it was for cities.
Treasurer’s Report and Claims: Patrice gave the treasurer’s report. Total bills for December are $5,246.88 and she wants to transfer $5,200 from savings to checking. Gary moved to approve her report and to transfer the funds; Glen seconded.
Gary moved to adjourn; Mike seconded. Meeting adjourned 9 p.m.
Report by Paul Raymond ___________________________________
Attest: GlenWilliamson, Chair_______________________________