Annual Town Meeting, March 11, 2008


Clerk Paul Raymond called the meeting to order with the Pledge of Allegiance at 8:15 p.m., following the township election and the canvass of the vote by the Board of Canvass. Sixteen citizens were present: Glenford and Tony Williamson, Eldon and Marjorie Schmedeke, Randy Michel, Joseph Vink, Mark Pallow, Michael McCullen, Patrice Winfield, Kenneth Yager, Ronald McCullen, Gary Vink, Bruce and Donna Filler, Gary Vink, and Paul Raymond.

Nominations were opened for meeting chair. Mike nominated Donna Filler; Ken seconded. Gary nominated Joe; Joe said he declined. Mark nominated Glen Williamson; Tony seconded. A hand vote showed that Glen was chosen as moderator and he took the chair.

Glen called for the reading of the clerk’s record of last year’s annual town meeting.

Gary moved to approve; Mark seconded. Paul presented the Treasurer’s statement of finances for 2007 prepared by Patrice. Mike moved to waive the reading of all checks; Ken seconded. Passed. Joe moved to approve the Treasurer’s Financial Statement; Gary seconded; passed.

ROAD REPORT: Board Chairman Gary Vink gave the road report for 2007. He said that due to the cost of buying a grader, we didn’t have the funds to do as much work as wanted, and that the weather did not cooperate, but many roads did get work in 2007.

Mayfield Road: New culvert installed.

Little Tamarack Lake Road: ECE put an underground cable on the Little Tamarack Lake Road and did some damage to the road; their $500 escrow payment went to pay for this.

Schmedeke Lane: The County made a decision to move this road to their surveyed position, across from Fust Lane. Eldon had found some more records, so the County will re-survey this road in the spring. So far nothing has been done. The original survey cost $4,800 and Ron asked who is paying for the new survey. Eldon said he did not ask for this survey and never wanted the County to get involved in the first place as the road has always been where it should be. Marg explained the history of the county’s involvement when she and Eldon found a county logging surveyor on their land and he called the sheriff and reported that the Schmedeke’s were armed.

Escrow Fund: Escrow payments were received from Carlson Lumber and from Tri-State and T & T Logging.

Pete Anderson Road: A culvert was replaced on this road. In their service year, Arna Township had reported that the culvert had collapsed and we replaced it in 2007. A culvert was placed at the access to Eldon’s road off of the Pete Anderson Road. Gravel was placed at the end of both the Pete Anderson Road and Langstrom Rd. to extend the roads as per our agreement with Arna. Arna insisted that we do more work on that road then we were planning to do; they had even threatened to take their own grader out.

Snowplowing: The Board decided in 2007 to only snowplow roads with full-time residents to reduce costs. Glen asked how has this worked out? Gary said that we only had one complaint, from Clay Heller, and that the Board had then decided to snowplow Heller Drive as it is a townline road. New Dosey had asked us not to plow that road too much as they were out of funds in their Road and Bridge fund. Randy asked about the Mayfield Road. Gary said that most of the land bordering the Mayfield Road is state land, and we should ask them why they don’t plow it. Randy said that snowplowing once in awhile helps clear the brush out.

Duncan Rd./Pete Anderson Roads: T&T Logging knocked down the road and stop signs on these roads during their logging activities. The clerk is billing them for both road signs, a total of $500. We don’t want to use their escrow monies.

Crooked Lake Road: Carlson Timber dozed that road without permission. No one is allowed to do any unauthorized road work on township roads. Carlson’s removed the crown and ruined the road.

Road construction training: Both Gary and Mark attended a road construction class and learned that the best way to maintain a road is with a crown and drainage.


Road and Bridge Fund: The Board had recommended keeping the R & B fund at $20,000. Eldon moved that it stay at $20,000 for 2009. Gary seconded. Passed.

Building Fund: The Board recommended no change; Joe moved to keep it at $1,200; Dennis seconded. Passed.

Fire Fund: The Board pays the Duxbury Volunteer Fire Department $3,500 per year for township fire protection, and recommended the same for 2009. Joe said Sandstone Township pays$16,000 per year. Mike said the fire department should have presented each township in the protection area with a proposal to increase this payment because of increased fuel and other costs before their annual town meetings, but since they didn’t, he moved to retain it at $3,500 for 2009. Randy seconded. Passed.

Park Fund: There was a discussion on where the revenues from logging the park would go. Paul said he thought they would go into the Park Fund. Joe said they could go into the General Fund, and he gave a history of acquiring the park land from the State. Eldon said that we need to build a new town hall and the logging revenues should stay in the Park Fund for the new building. Gary moved to keep the Park Fund at $400; Patrice seconded. Passed.

General Fund: Paul explained that the General Fund is used for all operating expenses of the town, for wages, insurance, mileage. Joe moved to keep this fund at $12,000; Mark seconded. Passed.

Debt Service Fund: Paul moved to keep this fund at $25,500 for one more year. After that the grader will be almost all paid off. Ron seconded.

WAGES: Mark moved to keep all wages, for Chairman, Supervisors, Clerk and Treasurer, the same as in 2008, $17.50 per hour for Chairman; $15 for Supervisors; $75 per meeting for Clerk and $65 for Treasurer, plus $10 per hour for bookkeeping and reports. Eldon seconded. Passed.

Ron moved to keep wages for General Labor, Major Mechanic, Mechanic’s Assistant and Grader Operator the same: $15/hour General; $30 Major Mechanic; $15, Mechanic Assistant and $16, Grader Operator. Joe seconded. Passed.

Out of Town Meetings: Paul explained why Board members attend out of town meetings such as the short courses and County Township Officers meetings. Eldon said there is no reason for all officers to attend the meetings. Glen said that as a new officer he has learned a great deal at the short courses and at the County Officers’ meetings. If we don’t attend, the elected and township officials think that we are not interested or involved, and they will ride all over us. Randy moved to keep the pay at $35 for half-day and $65 for full-day meetings. Mark seconded. Passed.

Election Judges: Mark moved to keep the pay at $10/hour; Patrice seconded. Passed.

Mileage: Gary move that we increase the mileage reimbursement to .50 per mile. Randy seconded. Passed.

Snowplowing: The Board had recommended no change for 2009, but Mark said that with fuel costs skyrocketing we could lose money on private drives at the current rate. He said it takes 20 to 30 minutes per driveway to plow private drives. He recommended an increase to $75 and $100. Paul moved that snowplowing be increased to $75 per season for next year, $100 for drives over 700 feet. Tony seconded. Dennis moved that special plowing be set at $150 per hour with a one-hour minimum. Mark seconded.

REPORT OF THE ELECTION: Glen read the report of the Board of Canvass. For Supervisor, Gary Vink 15; Donna Filler 1; Bruce Filler 8. For Clerk, Paul Raymond, 16, Donna Filler 8. There were 25 voters, including four new registrations. Gary thanked the citizens for coming out to vote.

PARK AND TOWN HALL: Eldon took the floor to advocate for building a new Town Hall. He said he believes our present hall and outhouse is a public joke, that there is no reason that in 2008 we should have to use an unheated outdoor privy. He said we should not put any money into maintaining our current hall. If the landing is cleared for the logging of the park land, this could be cleared for a new Town Hall site. Donna said that we should at least start a planning committee or exploratory team to see what is involved and how much it would cost. We could get Menards to donate materials and people could donate labor. Ron said people talk about volunteering but few people actually show up. They can’t even get volunteers for the Fire Department or for Duxbury Days. Randy said there is nothing wrong with our town hall now, and if people are concerned about paying $35 for a meeting, building a new fully insulated town hall with year-round heated plumbing and septic will be a big increase in our taxes. Joe elaborated on the history of the Park land; it was given by the state to make money for the town; it was only suggested that it be a park. Eldon said we should check on what size and kind of building we need, and he moved that we start an exploratory committee to look into all facets of a new building for our Town Hall; what size and materials and costs. Patrice seconded. Marjorie said we need at least 5 members. Glen asked for volunteers: Eldon and Dennis Schmedeke and Bruce and Donna Filler volunteered. Dennis moved to appoint the four people who volunteered and that the committee report to the Town Board at the June, 2008, meeting. Bruce seconded. Passed.

BANK AND NOTICES: Ron moved that First National Bank remain our bank of deposit; Patrice seconded. Passed. Paul moved that the Pine County Courier be our newspaper of record, with the Evergreen as secondary paper, and that the Town Hall and the Duxbury Store be places of notice. Gary seconded. Passed.

Gary moved that next year’s annual election and town meeting be held the second Tuesday in March. Mark seconded. Passed.

BOARD OF REORGANIZATION: Paul said that the Board of Reorganization will be Thursday, March 20, at 11 a.m. at the Duxbury Store.

BOARD OF EQUALIZATION AND APPEAL: Will be Wednesday, April 16, at 10 a.m.

Gary moved to adjourn the meeting. Mark seconded. Meeting adjourned at 10 p.m.

Paul Raymond, Clerk