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Kelliher City Council discusses pull tabs; liquor store update

The Kelliher City Council met in the council chambers at city hall Nov. 2 for its regular meeting.

Mayor Darin Latterell called the meeting to order with the following council members present: Laura Nelson, Don Erickson, Vicki Rabe and Ramona Gehlert. Staff present included City Clerk Dianna Thurlow and Assistant Clerk Peggy Vollhaber.

As no one was present to address the council for the public forum so they moved on to the consent agenda items.

The following consent agenda items were presented for approval:

• City council meeting minutes, Oct. 19.

• Receipts from Oct. 15-31 in the amount of $$36,440.15.

• Claims list for approval in the amount of $12,475.23.

• Cash control statement

• Employee overtime report

Larry Salmonson from the Northome VFW Post 3869 addressed the council regarding Bar Bingo and provided Bingo rules to the council. Salmonson stated that the Northome VFW would welcome the opportunity to provide Bar Bingo to the Kelliher Municipal Liquor Store. However, they would also request to provide pull tab boxes as well. The dollar amount per box would be up to the liquor store, be it $.50 or $5 boxes.

Salmonson indicated that comparable entities to the Kelliher Municipal Liquor Store averaged $900 per month in rent. He also indicated that they are required to donate 30 percent of their net profit back to the community.

Salmonson then answered questions and thanked the council for the opportunity to visit with them regarding Bar Bingo and the gambling services that the Northome VFW can provide.

A short discussion was held regarding having two entities in the liquor store providing gambling services but no decisions were made.

Clerk Thurlow, informed the council that the remodeling at the liquor store was complete and the total cost of the project came to $28,937.51 for which the Small Cities Grant covered $18,876. The remainder $10,061.51 will be paid from the Liquor Store Capital Replacement CD and Capital Improvement fund.

The city clerk presented the council with a recommendation from Head Bartender Tom Heck, to open the liquor store at 10 a.m. in recognition of the deer hunting season and to welcome the deer hunters to the area. After a short discussion, the council agreed with the recommendation but sales had to be tracked.

In recognition of the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, the Kelliher Municipal Liquor Store will be closed Nov. 26 and Dec. 25 and it will be closing at 5 p.m. Dec. 24, Christmas Eve, so that the employees can spend the holidays with their families.

The council unanimously approved the extended hours at the liquor store during the deer hunting season and to close the liquor store on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve at 5 p.m. and Christmas Day.

The clerk updated the council regarding the street light poles. Insurance will not cover the street light pole that blew down Sept. 28. Seven street light poles were ordered with a savings' of $200 per pole. The city will be billed in two increments, $3,640 this year and $3,640 in 2010. The approximate delivery date will be Dec. 21.

Beltrami Electric took down two poles Oct. 29 and will be taking down an additional five poles as soon as possible, due to the condition of the poles.

The date for the community informational meeting regarding utility rates is set for Nov. 23 at 7 p.m.

Three delinquent utility accounts were presented to the council for certification to the county, parcel #83.00062.00, 83.00256.00 and #83.00067.00, to be included with their 2010 taxes totaling $448.81.

The city clerk, on behalf of the Public Works Superintendent, Chuck Schultz, recommended hiring Anthony Schuh on a casual part time basis. Schuh works for the city during the summer through the CEP program. A short discussion was held regarding his employment duties. The council is requesting additional information prior to making a decision. No decisions were made.

Councilmember Nelson reported to the council regarding complaints of the amount of chlorine in the water. A short discussion was held regarding the process of pumping the chlorine in the water and flushing it thought the system. The residents that are closer to the pumps have higher levels than residents on the outer parts of the city. In the future when the additional chlorine needs to be added and pumped into the system, the staff needs to notify the residents with the higher level potential.

Miller McDonald submitted an audit engagement letter for the city's 2010 financial audit. After a short discussion regarding the amount of the audit fees, the council moved to approve Miller McDonald, Inc. to complete the 2009 financial audit in February 2010.

The council reviewed Ordinance Chapter 52 and a short discussion was held regarding implementing public safety nuisance fines or fees to residents that refuse to mow/remove junk from their property/lots. Further research will be conducted so no decisions were made.

Thurlow addressed the council regarding the Upper Red Lake Area Association recommendation that she attend the Convention and Expo Nov. 19-21 at their expense. A short discussion was held regarding sending the clerk and although it is a very thoughtful gesture on the part of the Upper Red Lake Area Association, the city will decline the offer.

The Beltrami County Sheriff's Department submitted an agreement for the city of Kelliher to participate in the multi-jurisdictional Beltrami County All-Hazard Mitigation Assistance Program.

Thurlow reminded the council of the budget meeting set for Nov. 9 at 6 p.m. Council member Rabe will not be able to attend.

Kimberly Daken submitted her resignation as cleaner effective Nov. 16. The council expressed their appreciation for all of her hard work and wishes her the best in her new endeavors. A short discussion was held regarding the position and it was the consensus of the council that the clerk offer the hours to the cleaner at the liquor store, Jamie Kisner.

Thurlow updated the council on the 2009 Small Cities Grant Application. John Wynne of Wynne Consulting indicated that the city of Kelliher was invited to submit a full application. Therefore, the city will be conducting a public hearing to obtain citizen input into the preparation and submission of the application for Minnesota Small Cities Program at 7 p.m. Nov. 16.

Council member Erickson suggested to the council that in the future they may want to consider selling the unbuildable lots individually. A short discussion was held but no decisions were made.

The Adoption of Resolution 2009-7, a resolution rstablishing rules and regulations governing the Kelliher First Responders Rescue Squad was voted upon and the following councilmember's voted in favor, Mayor Latterell, Erickson, Gehlert, Nelson and Rabe.