City of Tyler, Minnesota

Minnesota's Danish Heartland

July 6, 2009


July 6, 2009



  1. The regularly scheduled meeting of the Tyler City Council was called to order at 7:00 p.m., on July 6, 2009, at the Tyler fire Hall. Mayor Lutterman and Council Members Denney, Mundt, Clark and Thomsen were present. Staff Present: Petersen, Beck, and Tolsma. Guests Present: Earl Petersen, Greg Peter, Brian Williamson, Judy Williamson, Tim O’Leary, Larry Hanson, and Liz Hanson


  1. The agenda was approved by the Council with the addendum of item 14A: Submit Donation Request to Lake Benton Legion, to the agenda. Motion was made by Mundt, seconded by Clark, and unanimously carried.


  1. The May 4, 2009 minutes were approved with the addendum of the Council’s request to have City Administrator Tolsma check what Police Chief Spindler is allowed for an annual uniform/clothing allowance. Motion was made by Clark, seconded by Mundt, and unanimously carried.


  1. Under Public Express Earl Peterson was present to discuss the community center survey results. City Administrator Tolsma briefly went through the results of the survey. Petersen noted that there was some confusion on the survey and that many residents of Tyler had contacted him with questions about the survey. Council Member Clark stated that she felt putting tax dollars into a community center at the current time would not be a good idea. Clark also raised concerns of operational costs and noted that it would be difficult for a community center in Tyler to be self-sufficient. Clark then asked Petersen if he knew how other community centers that had recently been built had raised the necessary finances. Petersen stated that Maynard had recently built a community center without using any tax dollars and that grants were available to provide financial assistance for projects of this type. Petersen also gave the Council figures of what the Legion currently pays for operational costs on a yearly basis. Mayor Lutterman stated that the Council and Staff should look into possible grants and other forms financial assistance and discuss the matter more in the near future.


  1. Under Public Express Greg Peter was present to discuss the Aebleskiver Committee’s plan for controlling the sale of beer during the event. Peter noted that arm bands would be required by all softball players to purchase beer at the softball tournament. Council Member Thomsen stated that it was important for there to be safeguards in place so that teams are not allowed to bring their own beer into the softball complex. Peter also mentioned that there will be significant police presence at the tournament to deter any underage drinking.


  1. The Council and Staff recognized Tim O’Leary and Brian Williamson on behalf of the TRED Board for six years of service.


  1. City Administrator Tolsma discussed how interim compensation was determined for City employees Jan Nielsen and Cindy Koenig during the period of February through May when they were handling extra responsibilities due to the absence of a City administrator. Tolsma noted that the formula used to determine compensation amounts was essentially the same as had previously been used. Motion was made by Denney, seconded by Lutterman, and unanimously carried to approve the interim compensation amounts.


  1. City Administrator Tolsma gave a report regarding the wages received by seasonal lifeguards, including a comparison of wages with other cities in the area. Council Members Clark and Denney both mentioned that they had received feedback from many residents wondering why the pool was not open on Sundays. Tolsma stated that the closure was due to a lack of staff and scheduling conflicts, although pool staff was aware that the pool could be opened again on Sundays if the Council agreed that it should be. Motion was made by Lutterman, seconded by Clark, and unanimously carried to open the pool on Sundays from 1-5pm. Council Member Denney noted that during previous summers lifeguards would receive a bonus at the end of the season if they met the obligations of their contracts. Council Members also discussed the need to have a more consistent pool staff and that the wage increase should only be implemented if the lifeguards were willing to work Sundays and if they began to make sure that replacements were found before getting time off. Motion was made by Thomsen, seconded by Lutterman, and unanimously carried to approve the wage increase.  


  1. City Administrator Tolsma briefly discussed the proposed amendment to Chapter 5, Section 38 of the City Code concerning fence line locations. Tolsma noted that the Council had recommended a two foot minimum setback at the June Council meeting and that Ordinance No. 4 of the 2nd Series had been drafted to address that request. Motion was made by Clark, seconded by Mundt, and unanimously carried to adopt Ordinance No. 4, 2nd Series to implement a minimum setback of two feet for fence lines.


  1. City Administrator Tolsma reviewed Resolutions 09-1 and 09-2 with the Council and stated that the Resolutions would help the City recoup a portion of the costs it had incurred in the development of those districts. City Attorney Glenn Petersen discussed the TIF districts that currently exist in the City and described the process of recapturing tax increments through the interfund loan Resolutions as presented. Petersen noted that the Resolutions were a good idea, although it was unlikely that all of the development costs incurred by the City would be recouped. Motion was made by Denney, seconded by Mundt, and unanimously carried to adopt Resolution 09-1. Motion was made by Denney, seconded by Lutterman, and unanimously carried to adopt Resolution 09-2.


  1. City Administrator Tolsma informed the Council that he had spoken with DEED Grant Manager Kristin Prososki in regards to the Hospital Parking Lot and that the City was in fact able to use the remaining grant funds ($22,662) to complete individual projects within the overall second phase of the construction project. Motion made by Lutterman, seconded by Thomsen, and unanimously carried to get an estimate for installing at least curb & gutter, sidewalk, and approaches.


  1. Council Member Mundt informed the Council that he would like to get a survey done concerning the locations, and population, of ash trees in the City limits to help prepare for the possibility of an infestation of beetles that kill ash trees and has already been found in other areas of the State.


  1. Under the Police Report Council Member Denney questioned how much time the Tyler Police Department spends in other cities under the mutual aid agreement. City Attorney Petersen noted that the other police departments in the county also spend a good deal of time helping out the Tyler Police Department and that it works out evenly for all cities in the agreement. City Administrator Tolsma mentioned that the police car had been classified as a total loss by the insurance company and that the City would receive $5,928. Tolsma also stated that he had been in communication with Police Chief Spindler and that Spindler was currently putting together a list of possible replacement vehicles for the Council to decide on very shortly.


  1. City Attorney Glen Petersen was present to give his report. Petersen noted that TRED was currently waiting for estimates to come in for doing a roof inspection of the Chat ‘n’ Chew building. Petersen also mentioned that TRED had sold two lots and development would begin on them soon.  


  1. Utility Superintendent Dean Beck was present to give his report. Beck informed the Council that the cement around the pool had been successfully lifted back into its original place and that it looked very good. Beck then gave the Council an estimate to bring the baby pool into compliance and said it could potentially cost up to $15,000. Council Member Mundt recommended that the City contact the Lake Benton Legion to find out if they would be willing to donate funds for pool repair before the Council decides whether or not to close the baby pool indefinitely. Beck also noted that the pool was loosing a large amount of water daily through leakage and that hopefully the problem would be resolved soon after the repair crew comes to inspect the pool for cracks. Mayor Lutterman recommended that a meter should be installed at the pool to keep track of how much water is being used.


  1. City Administrator Tolsma was present to give his report. Tolsma stated that he had attended a Southwest Minnesota Housing Partnership meeting in Ivanhoe and that they wanted all City Council Members in the County to fill out a survey that could then be compiled by City and discussed at upcoming meetings.


  1. Mayor Lutterman was present to give his report. Lutterman noted that the Personnel Committee had met with City Administrator Tolsma to conduct a performance review and that the Committee felt that he was doing a good job. Lutterman also stated that he would like to see more information about Council proceedings in the Tyler Tribute. Council Member Clark mentioned that the issue was being addressed and that the newspaper staff was working on covering more City-related topics.


  1. Motion was made by Denney, seconded by Mundt, and unanimously carried to approve the bills.


  1. There being no further business before the Council, Mayor Lutterman adjourned the meeting at 9:05 p.m. Motion made by Mundt, seconded by Clark, and unanimously carried to adjourn.
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