March 4, 2013

The City Council of Comfrey met in regular session Monday, March 4, 2013 at 7:00 PM in the community center with all members present. Attorney Paul Muske was also present. Mayor Richter presided.

The Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag was recited.

The agenda was approved as presented.

February 6, 2013 minutes were read and approved on motion of Arnsdorf, seconded by Schmitt and carried unanimously.

On motion of Herrig, seconded by Evers and carried unanimously, the following bills were approved:

Alliant Energy

Electricity - January

 $     1,946.52

Bolton & Menk

Professional Services   for Hwy 258 Project

 $     1,578.00

Brown CountyRecorder

Recording of Utility   Easements

 $           92.00

Richard Callanan

Reimb - 2 extension   cords for community center

 $         36.32

Choice Financial   Savings Bank

Replenish Petty Cash   - Postage

 $           47.01

Clements Lumber

Ice melt, measuring   cups, clamps, coupling

 $           25.11

Comfrey C-Store


 $        695.04

Comfrey Fire Dept


 $        337.82

Comfrey First   Responders

key bungee, belt   loop, publications, Chili Dinner Exp

 $     1,032.17

Comfrey Market

Kitchen supplies,   soap, paper towels

 $           39.23

Comfrey Times


 $        514.42

Cottonwood County Auditor-Treasurer

2013 Road Benefits -   JD #7

 $        104.89

Crysteel Truck   Equipment

Equipment &   install for new city   truck

 $   23,196.92

Darfur Electric

Street lamps and   ballast

 $        550.53


Telephone/Internet -   February

 $        443.33


Chemicals, Tank demurrage

 $     1,595.96

Heiderscheidt   Digging, Inc

Snow removal

 $     1,120.00

Helen Herrig

Reimb - mop head for   scrubber

 $           36.72


adding machine ribbon

 $             2.66

JP Cooke

Pet License

 $           57.43

Lang Floor Covering

Tile Repair in   Municipal Bldg and Post Office

 $           95.00

League of Minnesota   Cities

PATROL Subscription -   Police CE

 $           85.00


Bills and Wages

 $     5,378.02

MN DNR Eco-Water-Res

Annual Water Use Fees

 $        157.00

Minnesota Department   of Health

Quarterly water   connection fee

 $        292.00

Minnesota Pollution   Control Agency

Wastewater Class B   Exam Fee

 $           55.00

Minnesota Rural Water

Annual Membership

 $        225.00

Muske & Muske

Professional Services

 $        477.00

Payroll Expense

February Payroll

 $     4,460.80

Rob's ServiceCenter

lights, air fresh,   wshr fluid, fuel hose, oil, saw blade

 $        125.72

Utility Consultants,   Inc

4 WWTP Tests

 $        190.50

Jeff Veerkamp

Mileage to pick up   city truck from Cysteel

 $           40.50

Verizon Wireless

Police Cell Phone -   Feb

 $           65.03

Waste Management

Res. Garbage pickup -   Jan

 $     1,082.05

The February financial report was reviewed and approved on motion of Herrig, seconded by Schmitt and carried unanimously.

Fire Chief Warner discussed the new radio system.  The radio in the city office cannot be narrow banded and he recommends a new portable one be purchased.  After further discussion, it was determined the police department would benefit from having another radio to use and it could be used in both the city office and the police department.  On motion of Arnsdorf, seconded by Herrig and carried unanimously, permission was given for the purchase of an additional portable radio to be used in both areas.  Warner also stated we will need to purchase a new base unit for the warning siren in order to activate the siren from the fire hall. The current base unit will no longer work because of the siren needing to be narrow banded.  He also informed the council Julie Schmitt has resigned her position as first responder captain and Gretchen Ecker was elected the new captain.  On motion of Evers, seconded by Arnsdorf and carried unanimously, Gretchen Ecker was appointed the new first responder captain.

A gambling application was approved on motion of Arnsdorf, seconded by Schmitt and carried unanimously for the Comfrey Fire Relief Association for their raffle held during Comfrey Community Days on July 13, 2013.

Police Chief Meyer presented the monthly police report.  He and the first responders thanked Steve Berberich for his willingness to assist in a call by plowing out a closed driveway so the rigs could get up in the yard.  Meyers also stated he had $525 in forfeited money which was available to the police department to spend on equipment.  After some discussion, a motion was made by Herrig, seconded by Arnsdorf and carried unanimously to use the forfeited funds towards the purchase of the portable radio for the city office/police department.

Public Works Director Berberich reported both plants are still running well with good test results.  He informed council he has a trouble spot in the storm sewer on the corner of George and Dewey Streets.  He would like to get Heiderscheidt’s out as soon as possible to dig it up so it can be repaired.  He is still waiting on parts ordered for the warning siren. 

Arnsdorf reported the library board met and everything is running smoothly.  They are looking into options of creating a lounge/adult reading area for patrons to use. 

Arnsdorf also informed the council Comfrey Area Pride will donate the purchase of water decanters for use in the community center.

City attorney Paul Muske opened the sealed bids for the purchase of the 2005 Chevrolet truck.  There were 2 bids presented; one from Shakopee Motors for $19,550 and one from Peter Samuelson for $22,850.85.  On motion of Herrig, seconded by Schmitt and carried unanimously, the purchase of the 2005 Chevrolet pick up went to the high bid of $22,850.85 by Peter Samuelson.  The council also approved the use of capital equipment funds in the amount of $25,809 for the purchase of the new 2013 city truck on motion of Arnsdorf, seconded by Evers and carried unanimously.

City assessor Amos Vogel appeared before the council to discuss 2012 real estate sales.  The Board of Equalization meeting is schedule for Monday, April 22, 2012 at 7:00 PM. The bill in the amount of $2,856.50 for the 2013 assessments for the City of Comfrey (290 parcels) was presented and approved on motion of Herrig, seconded by Arnsdorf and carried unanimously.

Discussion was held concerning the condition of a property on Dewey Street.  A motion was made by Evers, seconded by Schmitt and carried unanimously to contact the city building inspector to see if a hazardous condition exists.

Additional discussion was had regarding options of refinancing some of the higher rate debt and council instructed the clerk to look into options and the possibility of the city doing an internal loan.

The clerk also reported the numbers for the system replacement fund were incorrect due to an error on the certification form from Minnesota PFA.  The initial numbers were calculated on 2010 flows but after the corrected form was received, 2011 flows needed to be used.  On motion of Herrig, seconded by Evers and carried unanimously, direction was given to reduce the system replacement fund deposit from $11,925 (based on 2010 flows) to $5,294.50 in accordance with 2011 flows. 

A motion was made by Arnsdorf, seconded by Evers and carried unanimously for City Clerk-Treasurer, Tammy Kelly to attend the 3 year Minnesota Municipal Clerks Institute certification program.

Information was presented regarding the upgrade of QuickBooks from 2010 to the 2013 version. No action will be taken at this time.

Lang’s Floor Covering was contacted for a quote on replacement of the mop board in the municipal building.  Lang quoted an amount of $1.50 to $1.75 per installed foot depending on the color selected.  This will be considered at the long range planning meeting in August.

The meeting was adjourned on motion of Arnsdorf, seconded by Herrig.