8/4/2020 Commission Meeting Minutes

The City Commission Meeting began on Tuesday, August 4, 2020 at 5:00 PM CT, at City Commission Chambers, 254 2nd Avenue NE, Valley City, ND. Members of the public were not permitted in the Commission Chambers due to COVID-19 and as allowed in ND Executive Order 2020-16.

President Carlsrud called the meeting to order at 5:00 PM.

Members present: President Carlsrud, Commissioner Magnuson, Commissioner Bishop, Commissioner Gulmon, and Commissioner Erickson.

Others present: City Administrator Crawford, City Attorney Martineck, City Auditor Richter, Deputy Auditor Klein, PW Accountant/Manager Jacobson, Fire Chief Magnuson, Assistant Fire Chief Coit, Police Chief Hatcher, Chad Petersen from KLJ

Oath of Office for Officer Joshua Sampson

President Carlsrud administered the Oath of Office for Officer Sampson.

Approval of Agenda

Removed R1

Approval of Minutes

Commissioner Bishop moved to approve the amended minutes from July 7, 2020 meeting and minutes from July 21, 2020, seconded by Commissioner Erickson. Motion carried.

Approval of Consent Agenda

  1. Approve Monthly Reports from the Fire Chief, Building Inspector, Auditor, Municipal Judge and Public Works Accountant.
  2. Approve Monthly Bills for the City and Public Works in the Amount of $2,154,951.80.
  3. Approve Application for Raffle Permit for the Hi-Liner Booster Club for the activity dates of 7/1/2020 to 6/30/2021.
  4. Approve Application for Use of Veterans City Parking Lot for the Shine Dance Team Hi-Lites car wash on the dates of August 20th and 27th from 4 pm-9 pm during the Summer Nights activities.  Back up dates of August 22nd & Sept 5th.

City Auditor Richter reported we were at $2,154,951.80.  Operations for the month are figured right around the $1 million mark.  We purchased a garbage truck at $175,000, we had an extra payroll which was $140,000, a sweeper lease payment for $43,000, quarterly we send money over to the Valley City Parks which is their portion of state aid plus there was Food and Beverage and Retail Image Enhancement Funds that went over there for a total of $98,000, and it’s summer so with that we have construction.  For the permanent flood protection of about $260,000, and for 5th Ave for July that was $345,000.  That gets us back to the $1 million mark which is regular operations.

Commissioner Gulmon moved to approve the Consent Agenda, seconded by Commissioner Bishop.  Motion carried.

Public Comments

There were no public comments.


Approve first reading of Ordinance 1063, an Ordinance to amend Title 9 (Fire Protection) fire extinguisher inspections.

City Attorney Martineck reported there are three purposes for this ordinance.  First is to make sure that the extinguishers in town are installed and serviced pursuant to the fire code.  Second is to make sure the Fire Chief or Assistant Fire Chief has the authority to do the inspections.  Third is to set a fee for those services which we discussed in the Finance Meeting.

Commissioner Erickson moved to approve Ordinance 1063, seconded by Commissioner Bishop.  Motion passed. 

New Business

Approve Gaming Site Authorization Application for North Dakota Wildlife Federation for raffles to be held in the VC Eagles on the date of 04/10/2021.

Commissioner Gulmon moved to approve the Gaming Site Authorization for the North Dakota Wildlife Federation, seconded by Commissioner Bishop.  Motion carried.

Consider advertising for bids for sale of vacant lot at 14th St SW, Parcel 63-0880017.

City Attorney Martineck stated the Commission needs to set a minimum bid so we can advertise and then set a date and whatever other conditions are necessary.

Per City Auditor Richter there are no specials on this parcel right now.

Commissioner Bishop inquired how we come up with a value.

City Auditor Richter explained that typically they set a minimum bid if there are no special assessments at $2,000 minimum.  This is right on the edge of town and not sure if you can build on it so it may not be worth the $2,000.

Commission decided no action at this time and will add to September Finance agenda after researching more.

Consider recommendation from Visitors Committee for Image Enhancement Grant for Valley Gallery of Photography up to the amount of $5,000.

Chairman of Valley City Visitors Committee, Bobby Koepplin stated this would be a positive improvement and meets the criteria of the Visitors Committee.  Recommendation from the Visitors Committee is to approve up to the $5,000.  Commissioner Gulmon made a motion to approve, seconded by Commissioner Bishop.  Motion passed.

Consider recommendation form Visitors Committee for Image Enhancement Grant for Bridgetown Storage and Properties LLP in an amount up to $5,000.

Visitors Committee Chairman Bobby Koepplin stated the plans show renovations and improvements and with this business being present along business loop I-94 these improvements will be a nice clean-up of that area.  The Visitors Committee feels this meets the guidelines and we recommend approval up to $5,000.  Commissioner Bishop made a motion to approve, seconded by Commissioner Magnuson.  Motion passed.

Consider Recommendation from Visitors Committee for Food and Beverage Grant to the Valley City Eagles Aerie 2192 up to $41,861.

Visitors Committee Chairman Bobby Koepplin, stated the Eagles has been recognized as Valley City’s conference center because of the number of people it can house.  They are looking at replacing a leaking roof.  The amount of the recommendation from the Food and Beverage funds would be $41,861.25.  We know with COVID the collection of the Food and Beverage tax will be down significantly.  We still have a due pass recommendation understanding should it be approved it would only be paid out when there is sufficient funding in the account.  We currently have some major obligations with the last year of the Winter Show and the Wellness Center in there but we shouldn’t negate someone that qualifies because the money is tight.  The understanding is that the Eagles will draw on a loan or line of credit and it would be reimbursed when there is adequate sales tax collected from the Food and Beverage. 

City Auditor Richter stated we do have about $100,000 of Food and Beverage fund money annually dedicated to debt.  In 2021 we have $50,000 for the Winter Show dedicated to debt in January and will be the last installment there.  Then we have another $50,000 due in July for the Wellness Center and several more years.  Taking that into consideration and the project passed before we could distribute this money estimated the second half of 2021. 

Commissioner Bishop made a motion to approve, seconded by Commissioner Erickson.  Motion passed.

Approve application for property tax exemption for Rocking DD Properties.

City Auditor Richter stated she spoke with City Assessor Hansen regarding this application as City Assessor Hansen is out and unable to present.  She recommends a due pass as it qualifies and fits the requirements of this improvement to residential building.

Commissioner Magnuson made a motion to approve, seconded by Commissioner Erickson.  Motion passed.

Consider Amendment to Agreement for Permanent Flood Protection Phase III – Construction Engineering.

Chad Peterson from KLJ stated original contract was $482,500, this estimate was based off the contractor’s original schedule.  Project was delayed last fall due to some flooding in early October.  The original contract was for $182,500 with the city.  In the spring of this year the contract was amended to extend the completion date from June to September extending the amount of effort for our inspection team to do their job.  Requesting up to $20,500.  The cost share request through the state water commission in 2018 requested construction and engineering at $203,000 at the 80/20 cost share so what we are asking for has already been approved through the state wide commission in a cost share request.

Commissioner Gulmon made a motion to approve, seconded by Commissioner Magnuson.  Motion passed.

Consider appointing interim building official.

City Attorney Martineck stated the purpose for this request is to ensure for continuity that we have someone working for the city that is working as the interim building official so if we have something that needs to be signed off we have someone that’s able to do that.  My recommendation is that the Commission appoints Gwen as the interim Building Official.

Commissioner Gulmon made a motion to approve, seconded by Commissioner Magnuson.  Motion passed.

Consider contract for building inspection service – Midwest Inspection Services

City Administrator Crawford is requesting the City enter into a contract with Midwest Inspection Services and consider allowing herself the ability to enter into the contract, depending on the negotiations, on a monthly basis until the future plans are decided to continue on the progress in town without delays.

Commissioner Bishop made a motion to approve, seconded by Commissioner Erickson.  Motion passed.

City Administrator’s Report

City Administrator Crawford stated stop signs by 5th St NW have been put up.

Central Ave already has 2 hour parking but the Police Dept. was having a hard time enforcing it in areas because it wasn’t consistent.  We will be resigning areas so they are clear.  It would go from Main Street to 6th and then 4th, 3rd and 2nd one block east and west will be established as 2 hour parking and anything outside of that will be taken out.

Our Forester said the town is doing a great job at removing trees or getting back to him.  Just wanted to mention that if you cannot have them taken care of in the 10 days as indicated on the letter to please call him.

Jeff Differding will be retiring on September 22nd.

City Updates & Commission Reports

City Attorney Martineck reported we are moving forward with one candidate for City Engineer.  He is living in Virginia but is originally from North Dakota.  He will be here around the 21st or 22nd of August for a second interview.

City Auditor Richter reported on July 30th we wrapped up the 2021 budget meetings and approved the preliminary budget.  At this time we have a 2.01 mill increase.

Fire Chief Magnuson reported census takers are out and if you have not completed yours they will stop.  They may also come to your house if they cannot get ahold of your neighbors. 

Police Chief Hatcher reported the Police Department will start enforcing abandoned vehicles on private property.

Chad Peterson from KLJ reported updates on construction projects.  5th Ave NW done with underground work on Phase 1.  Working on grading over the last week and a half they have started concrete work and hoping to wrap that up early next week and then complete the paving on Phase 1 and move onto Phase 2.

Working on Phase 3 of the of the Permanent Flood Protection by the Master Lift Station.  Working on the concrete on the curb and gutter street restoration and as soon as that is cured they will start the paving.  Also working on placing the rip rap in the river along the walls.  All the flood walls are done and the lighting has been installed.

Main Street and 8th Ave SW solicited quotes for the inlet that failed.  They came in a little high so we spoke to Reiner Contracting to look at an alternative fix.  Reiner has submitted a quote to do the work for $12,000 which is under the original quoted $20,000.  They should be starting on the work this week.

CP Rail has been hauling a lot of trucks across 12th Ave NE into the Country Club property to do the repairs.  KLJ and Public Works have inspected the roadway at this point and identified damages and repairs that need to be completed.  CP Rail has been contacted and we are waiting to hear back on that.  Although at this time there is not significant damage we want to look at what kind of reduction in life this may have caused.

Commissioner Gulmon thanked Avis, Brenda, Gwen, the department heads and staff for all the great work on the budget, it seemed to go really well.

Commissioner Erickson reported that Adam Faul has been trying to find additional sites for recycling.  Working on one for the North side of town.  We will add a drop site at the tree site and up by J&S Marketing for now.

Commissioner Bishop welcomed Officer Joshua Sampson and thanked Police Chief Hatcher for all his hard work and as of tomorrow the Police Force will be fully staffed.

Mayor Carlsrud reported the City County Health is participating in COVID testing that will take place Wednesday, August 5th from 4-5:30 at VCSU parking lot.  No cost and no insurance processed.  Please register prior.

Senator Robinson sent a note sharing their gratitude for taking out the electrical poles at VCSU and putting it all underground.

Meeting was Adjourned at 5:55 PM.

Posted in Announcements, City Commission, City Commission Minutes.