City of Tyler, Minnesota

Minnesota's Danish Heartland

July 2, 2007

1.      The regularly scheduled meeting of the Tyler City Council was called to order at 7:00 p.m., on July 2, 2007 at the Tyler Fire Hall.  Mayor Harper and Council Members Denney, Hunt, Manson, and Williamson present.  Staff Present: Luger, Lutterman, Petersen, and Spindler.


2.      Motion by Denney to approve the agenda and the June 4, 2007 minutes.  Seconded by Manson and approved unanimously. 


3.      No items were presented under public express.


4.      Jr. Jaspersen representing the RTR Golf Team requested $840 from the City to purchase six new golf bags for the team to use every year.  He informed the Council that the bags are from Ping and cost $140 each; a total of twelve bags are needed.  Denney asked if the school will be funding any golf bags; Jaspersen stated that the school and the hospital have agreed to purchase two bags each.


Manson was concerned that if the City contributes to the golf program that other RTR programs may come forward with funding requests.  Harper agreed and believed the school should be contributing more to this endeavor.  Jaspersen thought the money could come from Shaokatan Charity funds.  Manson asked if this is an immediate request, which Jaspersen replied no.  Manson suggested the funding request be worked into the 2008 budget.  Harper thanked Jaspersen for coming and reiterated that his request will be considered in next year’s budget. 


5.      Dr. Donna Hess and Katie Dreiling from South Dakota State University informed the Council of the National Children’s Study, which is the largest study of the environment’s effects on children’s health and development ever conducted in the United States.  Lincoln County was selected as one of the 105 sites in the nation due to its rural characteristics.  Hess mentioned that the purpose of their presentation is to inform the Council of the Study, answer questions, and solicit community input.  Williamson asked if the increase intake in caffeine will be considered in the Study, which Hess responded yes.  Spindler found some of the data to be extremely interesting and asked if the findings will be made available to the public, which Hess responded yes.  Hess asked the Council to fill out a community health survey; Harper assigned himself and Williamson to fill out the survey.


6.      Spindler gave the monthly police report where he stated that the police department received 54 calls for service last month.  Some of those calls included: a report of theft at RTR High School, an underage drink and drive arrest, a report of suspicious activity at South Tyler Street and East Oak Street, multiple two vehicle accidents, and a gas drive off at the Corner Store.  Spindler informed the Council that he will be utilizing an ATV during Aebleskiver Days.


7.      Luger informed the Council that the Tyler Area Community Club and Johnson’s Trenching Softball have requested a liquor license for Aebleskiver Days.  Manson asked if both organizations are under the same license, which Luger responded traditionally no since the beer is served in two separate locations.  Since both organizations are covered under the same liquor liability insurance, Luger believed only one license may be necessary.  Motion by Harper to issue a liquor license to the Aebleskiver Days Committee.  Seconded by Manson and approved unanimously. 


Luger also mentioned that the Aebleskiver Days Committee has requested the City consider paying for the liquor liability insurance.  Denney stated that he asked other cities how they handle this situation and they said whatever organization benefits from the liquor sales pays for the insurance.  Spindler asked if the City benefits from Aebleskiver Days, which Denney responded not from beer sales.  Denney believed whoever benefits from the beer sales should pay for the insurance.  Denney motioned to not have the City purchase the liquor liability insurance.  Seconded by Manson and approved unanimously.


8.      Luger presented a revision to the meal allowance policy to the Council.  Instead of reimbursing employees for their meal expenses after the workshop, employees would be given a meal allowance in advance.  Motion by Harper to approve the revision to the meal allowance policy as presented.  Seconded by Denney and approved unanimously.


Luger also informed the Council that a discrepancy occurs between departments when Paid Time Off (PTO) is converted from days into hours.  For the administration and utility departments, fifteen days converts into 120 hours; however for the police department, fifteen days converts into 160 hours since they work twelve hours a day.  To resolve this difference, Luger proposed to calculate PTO based on hours versus days, which would give the administration and utility departments 120 hours per year and the police department 126 hours per year during an employee’s first year of service.  After some discussion, the Council agreed to table this agenda item until the next meeting to give them more time to review the materials. 


9.      Petersen gave the monthly report for TRED where he informed the Council that the remaining two lots in Brouwer’s Second Addition are on the verge of being sold to one couple.  He also reported that the new hospital parking lot is complete and that the developer’s of the condominium project have exclusive rights of the property south of the hospital until September 1st. 


10.  Luger requested the Council hire David Drown and Associates on an ongoing basis to complete the annual reports for the Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Districts.  Luger stated that the reporting fee is $1,500 for this year and will be $2,000 for next year and beyond; the fee is paid for by the district.  Denney motioned to pay David Drown and Associates up to $2,000 a year to complete the TIF reports.  Seconded by Manson and approved unanimously.


11.  Lutterman stated that at a past council meeting the Council agreed to not charge vacant homes for garbage, but took no formal action regarding branch pickup.  Since the garbage rates fund branch pickup, Lutterman believed vacant homes should not receive this service.  After some discussion, Harper motioned to charge $5.00 per load for branch pickup at properties that do not receive garbage service.  Seconded by Manson and approved unanimously.


12.  Luger stated that the Legion has requested the City not charge them for garbage service since most of the garbage in their dumpster does not belong to them.  After some discussion the Council agreed to not drop the charge since other businesses have experienced the same problem.


13.  Luger informed the Council that the Southwest Minnesota Arts and Humanities Council (SMAHC) have requested a $100 contribution from the City.  Motion by Hunt to donate $100 to SMAHC.  Seconded by Denney and approved unanimously.


14.  Luger informed the Council that members of the Community Center Task Force recently attended a meeting where the guest speaker recommended Tyler decide what amenities to include in the community center before selecting a location.  Luger presented the Council with a list of various amenities that could be in the community center and asked for their feedback.  The first item on the list was a banquet room that could accommodate up to 450 people.  Denney questioned the large capacity of the banquet room.  Luger explained that the new community center would be utilized as a regional center since many facilities in the area cannot accommodate larger groups.


The next item on the list was a small meeting room that could be used by the Legion and other groups.  The Council agreed that a small meeting room is a necessary amenity and believed the room could include technology for teleconferencing, which was the next item on the list.  The Council also agreed to drop the senior citizens center from the list since the seniors have indicated that they are not interested in relocating.  The remaining amenities on the list included a wellness center and the library; the Council decided to further research the wellness center option and agreed to not contemplate the library until a location has been determined.


15.  Harper reported that the personnel committee interviewed five candidates for the Utility Superintendent position and recommended the Council offer the position to Scott Plakke at a starting wage of $22.50 per hour.  Motion by Manson to accept the personnel committee’s recommendation to hire Scott Plakke.  Seconded by Denney and approved unanimously.


16.  Motion by Denney to approve the bills.  Seconded by Williamson and approved unanimously.


17.  There being no further business before the Council, Mayor Harper adjourned the meeting at 9:50 p.m.

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