Mayor Saundra Solum called the Spring Grove, Minn., city council meeting to order Tuesday, August 15 at 6 p.m., and led with the Pledge of Allegiance. Council members met at 168 West Main Street in Room 100. Council members present included Mayor Solum, Karen Folstad, Chad Rohland and Trent Turner. Also in attendance was Clerk/Administrator Jana Elton. Councilor Heather Edgington was absent.
Councilor Turner moved, second by Folstad, to adopt the the agenda; in turn motion carried.
Councilor Folstad stated one change to be made to the consent agenda, which was correcting minutes from the July 18 regular city council meeting. Councilor Rohland stated an additional change to be made, which was adding someone to Parks and Recreation. Once the changes were made, Folstad moved, second by Rohland to adopt the consent agenda. Motion carried.
No one spoke during Open Forum.
Resolution 23-39 gained unanimous council approval, in which a proposed re-zone application for 112 Division Avenue South (parcel 260010000) took place, where Commercial will become Residential. The property owner stated, “I just think it’d be good to change.”
No updates for Megan Jones’ property at 117 Main Street West had been received.
The city’s lawyer, Greg Schieber is in the process of reviewing updates in regards to the Sherburne Gronne Dekar Development Agreement. Otherwise, nothing is moving forward at this time.
The council decided to postpone discussion on the city’s website design until next month.
Rohland moved, second by Folstad to accept Resolution 23-38 – distributed energy resources and net metering rules and governing. Motion carried.
The city is in the process of renegotiation with Isaak Solum, who is interested in Spring Grove’s available animal control officer position. Solum found a place for captured animals to be housed that is on another resident’s private property outside city limits. On the private property, these captured animals will be well cared for. If an animal were to stay overnight there will be an expected $75 boarding fee paid to the private property’s owner. Solum requests the city collect payment. Solum picked up a doghouse, panels for kennels are still needed. On the private property the dogs will be housed on top of cement in shade, where they will stay cool during summer months; during winter months, hay will be provided so the dogs can keep warm. Overall, the animals will be provided a place of comfort during their stay. City Administrator/Clerk Elton proudly stated, “We care about animals!” Mayor Solum brings up the issue of liability. The council agreed to discuss the matter with Greg Schieber first for further clarification.
Lately, Spring Grove has utilized one of Houston County’s free portable speed limit signs when available. The goal is to raise awareness for drivers to reduce speed when approaching city limits. Council member Turner recommends the city to continue using the county’s speed limit sign.
Financial advisor Mike Bubany joined the council meeting via phone call. The city’s water rates will increase 3.0% while the sewer rates will increase 3.5%; the question is when will such take effect? After discussion with Bubany, the council agreed for the increase in rates to take effect January 1, 2024.
In consideration of rezoning both parcels 260009000 and 260008000 from Commercial to Residential, a public hearing on the matter will take place.
A discussion took place in regards to the Small Cities Development Program. Mayor Solum commented, “It’s such a plus for the community to make sure homes are improved.” A survey will need to take place, the survey of which will cost $1,000. Roland moved, second by Turner to do survey if the $1,000 can come from the general fund. Motion carried.
Councilor Rohland shared the Parks & Recreation committee conducted a fundraiser for the upcoming Uffda Fest, which will take place October 6-8. The committee gained a new member, and Rohland looked into if homeowners were interested in trees. If the program was implemented, the program will work with the city.
The Spring Grove City Council meeting adjourned at 7:34 p.m. The next council meeting will be held Tuesday, September 19 at 6 p.m. at 168 West Main Street in Room 100. The public is invited to attend.