The meeting which was held outdoor was called to order at 7:30 p.m. by Chair Kuettel. Attendees were following 6-foot social distancing.
Town officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, Supervisor Donald Swanstrom, Supervisor Douglas Dressen, Clerk Lita Wallace, Treasurer Raymond G. Barnes
Guests: Marialice Arndt, Richard Arndt, Bonnie Dressen, Jim Hacking, Paul Klassen, Ken Kost, Deb Pomroy, Tom Sykes, Ted Wallace, Daryl Waldriff, John Wilson
Wallace presented the minutes of the Board of Supervisors Meeting on July 14, 2020 and July 29, 2020 Emergency Meeting. Revision was suggested to add that instead of in-person voting in November, it will be mail-in voting for the July 14 meeting minutes. No changes on the Emergency Minutes. Motion to approve by Dresden, second by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0
Total Funds on hand as of 07/01/2020 (Includes Investments) – $148,470.88
Plus: Deposits – $22,890.22
Less: Disbursements (July) – $2,172.56
Total Funds on hand as of 07/31/2020 – $169,188.54
July Check # 1563 – 1569
Motion by Swanstrom to approve July Treasurer’s Report, seconded by Dressen, motion carried, 3-0-0.
Claims (August) – $3313.92
August Check # 1570 – 1579
No transfers to the Checking Account will be needed
Motion by Swanstrom to approve August Treasurer’s Report and the Claims, seconded by Dressen, motion carried, 3-0-0
- August in-person meeting was held outdoor.
- September in-person meeting will be held at Pequaywan Firehall with a possibility of conducting it outdoors, weather permitting, following guidelines for in-person meeting. September Town Board Meeting has been revised to start at 6:30 p.m. Motioned by Swanstrom, seconded by Dressen, motion carried, 3-0-0.
- Status and possible date for tree disposal at township land/opening of collection area for dead trees: St. Louis County is scheduled to inspect and approve that a culvert is not needed in the driveway to the tree disposal area. Kuettel reported that the tentative date for the tree disposal area will be Saturday, August 29, 2020, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Requirements are that maximum diameter must be 10 inches and the branches must be de-limbed/ separated from the trunk. Second burning will be scheduled sometime in September and will be announced during the September meeting. Swanstrom motioned the opening of the area and the date and time, seconded by Dressen, motion carried, 3-0-0.
- Update on the walking trail: Dressen reported that he had finished mowing the trail and mentioned that there is a huge problem with thistle. He commented that “the walking trail is an absolute jewel for the township.” The township is hoping that more people will use it.”
- Fire threat from dead trees at West Branch Road: Swanstrom reported that he talked with Kelly Sandroski of St. Louis County and they are interested in getting the trees taken cared of as we are. Landowners could be advised to take care of the issue and if they don’t do anything with it, the township can decide what to do next. DNR has more authority on it. Some guests suggested to write a letter to the property owners to ask them to remove the dead trees. The dead trees are in the county land within the right of way.
- DS200: Wallace reported that she talked with the company that sells DS200 and was told that the machine processes ballots at 300 per hour. The county stated that it is not a requirement to purchase the machine, a township can continue to do hand count. Since the town only has under 150 registered voters, the supervisors decided that it is not worth it to purchase the machine for over $5,000.00 . Swanstrom motioned to advise the state that the township declines the grant, Dressen seconded, motion carried, 3-0-0.
- Cares Act grant for Election 2020 expenses: Wallace reported that the state through St. Louis County has approved this grant to cover expenses incurred during state and federal elections during this pandemic. Example of an expense will be plexiglass barrier.
- August 2020 Primary election update – 32 out of 135 registered voters voted in-person. There were 13 Absentee Ballots.
- November 2020 General Election mail-in voting: Registered voters will be receiving their ballots for November election from St. Louis County
- Discuss the following resolutions:
1. Records Retention and Filing System for Townships
2. Statutory Conflicts of Interest
Dressen motioned to approve the two resolutions, Swanstrom seconded, motion carried, 3-0-0.
- Dressen reported that there is someone selling a landmower that the township can purchase. Dressen motioned to set-up a Building/Property Maintenance fund for $1500.00, Swanstrom seconded, motion carried, 3-0-0.
- Chinese Mystery Snails (click to view image) in the area and how to dispose of them: Pomroy reported that she had seen hundreds of Chinese mystery snail in the area. She also mentioned that these snails (click to view image) were found at the little lake two years ago. Furthermore, she said that to properly dispose of them, DNR advises to bury them in the ground. The snails carry parasites transmissible to ducks and they are decimating certain population of waterfowl. Dressen suggested for Pomroy to do a research for helpful websites that can be posted to the town webpage. Guests were concerned that folks are bringing boats that are used from other lakes and bringing invasive species to the lakes here.
- Newsletters from the Office of the State Auditor with information on CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid Relief, and Economic Securities)
- Several emails from St. Louis County Elections: clerk/election judge training; election supplies; rosters; PPE (hand sanitizer, disinfectant spray, masks) available for pickup; reminder to do preliminary test of the Automark machine prior to holding the public accuracy test; DS200 manual; mailing labels for registered voters; sample mail ballot letter; CARES Act; names of voters that requested Absentee ballots for August election to be marked on the roster
- Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State with instructions on VEGA-2 grant funds and expenditure reporting for the purchase of DS200 counting machine
- Governor Walz’s Executive Order 20-81 from St. Louis County which says beginning July 25, 2020, all Minnesotans must wear a face covering in all public indoor spaces including polling places
- Requests from Steve Bell & Associates, and North Shore Title to verify special assessments levied on properties in the township
- Minnesota Association of Townships (MAT) re-unsolicited packages of mystery seeds appearing to come from China
- MAT special teleconference on CARES Act funding for townships
- S. Census Bureau updates on the Final Boundary Validation Program
- Minnesota Department of Natural Resources re-CPL grant program open for applications to nonprofit organizations and government entities with purpose of funding conservation projects that restore, enhance, or protect forests, wetlands, prairies, or habitat for fish, game, and wildlife in Minnesota with grant ranging from $5,000 to $400,000
- Emailed Resolution 2020-012 Supporting Mail Voting for November 2020 General Election to St. Louis County Elections
- Emailed list to St. Louis County Elections of training completed by election judges
Next Meeting, September 8, 2020, 6:30 p.m., Pequaywan Firehall, 8764 Pequaywan Lake Road
Dressen motioned to adjourn the meeting at 9:20 p.m., seconded by Swanstrom, 3-0-0.
Respectfully submitted by,
Lita Wallace, Town Clerk