The regular August 12, 2020, Canton City Council meeting required dealing with several unfinished business items, including utility service rate increases.
Multiple options were presented by Mayor Johnson for potential water rate increases and the resulting effect on city reserve funds.
Current sewer and garbage rates are meeting budget needs, although Richard’s Sanitation has increased their rates 2%, plus 9.75% tax, effective September 1 for August service. After extensive discussion, it was decided to table the decision until the September meeting to allow council members to study the options. A public hearing is required to approve the rate change prior to implementation.
The application for Coronavirus Relief Funds, a July discussion item, was back on the agenda. The cost for enhanced city services, including sanitation, notification, communication and sound systems due to the inability to use prior accepted practices could be eligible for reimbursement. It was approved to start the certification application process with the MN Department of Revenue for available Canton funds of $26,294 under the CARES Act.
The Fillmore County highway department denied the request for painting crosswalks on city intersections for the current year.
Request for the city to provide children at play signs was addressed. It was determined that city cannot be held responsible for providing the residents’ individual signs.
Proposals from Stortz Satellite for security cameras were reviewed with the system features discussed for city hall security and brush dump due to illegal dumping of items occurring at that location. Approval for installation at city hall was approved. Brush dump surveillance system was tabled pending more specific details as to range and features for that location.
Updates on the Mitson House electric, roof and ramp projects were given by Charlie Warner.
The winner of the Adopt a Planter will be determined by popular vote on Facebook with details available on the City of Canton page.
Charlie Warner gave an update regarding the wishes of the Presbyterian Church to keep a blacktopped parking lot, with the church to pay for needed patching in that area. Approval was given to the request, with Warner abstaining.
Consent agenda items presented of monthly bills and sponsorship for the emergency response team special section in the Fillmore County Journal ($39) were approved as presented. City bills were given approval after clarification of one item. Clerk’s report update on delinquent utility accounts — 21 accounts totaling approximately $2,040 (as of August 7, 2020), with no disconnections.
Danny Whalen in compliance with probation until February 10, 2021; noting that the county attorney fee was $1,494 alone.
Joel Torgerson convicted of two public nuisance charges; cleanup required by November 15, 2020, with a list of requirements to be provided.
Lolly Melander pretrial conference August 10 with jury trial canceled for August; additional time requested by the defense for evidentiary review; trial date delayed.
Steve Popplewell plea hearing August 24; more information in the new business portion of meeting.
Rick Nelson citation (building maintenance and appearance).
Robroy Kelly citation (inoperable vehicle).
Town hall use
August 19 – American Red Cross Blood Drive (noon to 6pm); August 25 – Canton Township Board; Glitter Athletic – Sundays, Mondays and Thursdays.
Filings for mayor and city council positions include: mayor – Donivee Johnson and Nick Presby; city council – Randy Gossman, Jason Magnuson, Josh Nordsving and Cindy Shanks.
City hall will be closed on September 4.
Jon Nordsving, Public Works report – Driveway specialist schedule for Hudson Ave. repairs August 24; East Prairie completed with seeding required. Cost of replacement street lights to LED estimated at $4,428 with submission for Arlin Falck grant funding.
Fire: clerk and chief are continuing to work with townships to establish service agreements.
Police: Fillmore County monthly report reviewed; possibility of reducing cost from the current amount of $24,000 per year to be addressed when contract is reviewed this year.
Planning Commission – Ron Howard permit for rebuilding a deck on existing pillars on trailer on South Main; all setback requirements are met; permit was approved.
New business items
Ordinance 2020-06; adoption Minnesota Basic Code 2019 Edition with prior ordinances of parking, snowmobiles, recreational vehicles and zoning exempted; newspaper publishing was approved.
Recent activity in Canton raised policy questions as to peddlers/solicitors within Canton. Currently individuals register at city office. No action was taken.
The 2020 budget six-month review was noted as on target. The 2021 preliminary budget will be presented at the September meeting.
Popplewell property discussed regarding a letter from the owner requesting additional time for demolition of the former school building. Assistant Fillmore County Attorney Hammell gave the opinion that this would be permissible as long as terms of a signed legal agreement are met by the proposed April 1, 2021, deadline. Specifics of the agreement are to be determined and a signed copy will be filed in the criminal file. Approval was given to suspend the current legal action.
A bulk water fee of $20 base charge plus the current residential rate per gallon per occurrence.
A gazebo area land survey was approved to determine the boundaries of the area prior to any additional development on Veterans Drive.
An update regarding usage of the ballfield and the lighting was discussed. Currently the Legion has been paying an idle service fee since February, with no meters. A MiEnergy representative will determine specific costs to re-establish electricity with the Legion assuming responsibility for the costs.
Richard’s Sanitation will begin utilizing a mechanized truck for curbside pickup of totes. Placement must be at least six feet apart.
Next meeting will be September 9, 2020, at 7 p.m.