City Council Minutes of April 23, 2018

Date: 
April 23, 2018

MINUTES OF THE CITY COUNCIL MEETING

APRIL 23, 2018

 

Pursuant to due call and notice thereof, a regular meeting of the City Council of the City of Saint Peter was conducted in the Governors' Room of the Community Center on April 23, 2018.

A quorum present, Mayor Zieman called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.  The following members were present:  Councilmembers Brand, Pfeifer, Kvamme, Grams, Johnson, and Mayor Zieman.  Absent was Councilmember Carlin.  The following officials were present: City Administrator Prafke, Assistant City Attorney Grean and City Engineer Domras.

Approval of Agenda – A motion was made by Pfeifer, seconded by Brand, to approve the agenda as modified.  With all in favor, the motion carried.

Approval of Minutes – A motion was made by Johnson, seconded by Kvamme, to approve the minutes of the April 9, 2018 regular City Council meeting.  With all in favor, the motion carried and the minutes were approved.  A complete copy of the minutes of the April 9, 2018 regular City Council meeting is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Proceedings 19.

A motion was made by Kvamme, seconded by Brand, to approve the minutes of the April 17, 2018 Board of Appeal and Equalization meeting.  With all in favor, the motion carried and the minutes were approved.  A complete copy of the minutes of the April 17, 2018 Board of Appeal and Equalization meeting is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Proceedings 19.

A motion was made by Kvamme, seconded by Grams, to approve the minutes of the April 19, 2018 special City Council meeting.  With all in favor, the motion carried and the minutes were approved.  A complete copy of the minutes of the April 19, 2018 special City Council meeting is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Proceedings 19.

Public Hearing:  Tobacco Regulation Modifications – City Administrator Prafke reviewed the City Council’s procedure for conducting a public hearing.

Mayor Zieman opened a public hearing at 7:04 p.m. on proposed changes to the City Code related to tobacco regulations.   City Administrator Prafke indicated that, as per State law, notice of the proposed changes to the City Code to raise the minimum age for purchase of tobacco and tobacco related products to 21 had been posted and tobacco license holders had been provided at least 30 days’ notice of the proposed action.  Prafke also pointed out that in 2013 the City Council had taken action to include electronic cigarettes (vaping) under the definition of tobacco products in the City Code.

Mary Hildebrandt, 204 North Fifth Street, expressed her appreciation to the City Council for the work they have done in considering raising the age to 21.

Sandy Renor, 1921 Rock Ridge, indicated her belief that raising the minimum age to 21 is the first step in being a “threat to big tobacco” and eliminating the next generation of tobacco users. 

Michael Callahan, 38234 466th Lane, addressed the Council in support of increasing the minimum age and indicated he had chosen to live in Saint Peter because of the values of the community.

Gustavus Senior Leah Moat expressed her support for the increased minimum age and indicated her belief that doing so would make Saint Peter safer and healthier.

Dr. Lon Knutson, 573 Forest Lane, North Mankato, urged support for the increased age to “prevent a lifetime of addiction” for youths.  Knutson expressed his belief that children’s brains are more vulnerable to the effects of nicotine which could create a stronger addiction in children.

Erin Simmons, 52698 Valley View Circle, North Mankato, also provided information on the fruit and mint flavored rechargeable e-cigarettes being used by youth which are easily hidden and produce no vapor cloud.  Simmons also expressed her belief that communities which pass the higher minimum age regulation have seen a 25% reduction in tobacco use.

Dr. Keith Stelter, 355 North Welco Drive, stated that society is evolving in the way issues like smoking is accepted and encouraged the City Council to continue to be progressive and be a leader.

There being no further speakers, the hearing was declared closed at 7:27 p.m. 

Consent Agenda – In motion by Grams, seconded by Brand, Resolution No. 2018-58 entitled “Resolution Approving Consent Agenda“ was introduced.  Councilmember Johnson asked about the low wage for Cashiers at the pool and concerns about minimum wage requirements.  City Administrator Prafke indicated that the City’s seasonal employees are exempt from minimum wage requirements, but that the recent increases for Lifeguard positions were based on the cost of obtaining the Red Cross Lifeguard certifications and that was part of the reason for recommending higher wages for Lifeguards.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2018-58 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 22.

City Code Tobacco Regulations – Following the public hearing, City Administrator Prafke indicated that if adopted, the changes to the City Code to, among other things, increase the minimum age for purchase of tobacco and tobacco related products to 21, would take effect upon publication in the St. Peter Herald on May 3, 2018.  Councilmember Johnson questioned whether staff had any discussion with Mankato and North Mankato about those communities also making a change.  Prafke noted that he had no contact with Mankato, but North Mankato’s change would take effective on the first of the year.  Johnson expressed concerns about passing the ordinance when youths can just drive 10 minutes to Mankato to purchase tobacco.

Councilmember Pfeifer indicated he would be voting against the ordinance because 18 year olds are allowed to vote, drive and serve in the military and without allowing youth an opportunity to make a responsible decision they will not grow into responsible adults.

Councilmember Kvamme stated that while 18 year olds can drive, they cannot rent a car and they are often not able to control impulses.

Councilmember Grams asked about the penalty for violation of the ordinance.  Prafke indicated it would be a misdemeanor offense.

Councilmember Brand supported the increased age and asked the Council to “consider being leaders among our peers”.  Brand indicated he would be voting in favor of the change and “against tobacco companies”.

Councilmember Johnson indicated he had no problem with the increase if it was a state-wide change, but objected to Saint Peter being the only community with the increased age.

Mayor Zieman indicated he believed the first action considered by the Council, to make any change to Saint Peter minimum age contingent upon Mankato and North Mankato taking action to increase the minimum age for purchase, was a good compromise and he expressed concerns that Saint Peter taking the action alone would potentially chase people to Mankato to buy tobacco products.  Zieman stated he supported state-wide or regional efforts, but would not support Saint Peter making the change alone and jeopardizing local businesses.

City Administrator Prafke noted that with only six Councilmembers present, a tie vote would be the same as the ordinance being defeated as by law, a majority vote is required to pass.

Councilmember Kvamme asked how, under Robert’s Rules of Order, the ordinance could be brought back before the Council if it failed.  Prafke stated that under the City Council operational rules any two Councilmembers can ask to have an item placed on the agenda.

A motion was made by Brand, seconded by Grams to table action on the ordinance until the next Council meeting.  With Councilmembers Brand, Kvamme, and Grams voting aye; Councilmembers Pfeifer, Johnson and Mayor Zieman voting nay, the motion failed.

A motion was made by Brand, seconded by Kvamme, to introduce an Ordinance entitled “An Ordinance Amending Saint Peter City Code Chapter 12 “Business Licensing And Regulations” And Chapter 30 ‘Offenses And Miscellaneous Provisions’ And Adopting By Reference Saint Peter City Code Chapter 1 Section 1-6, Which, Among Other Things, Contain Penalty Provisions” was introduced.  Upon roll call, Councilmembers Brand, Kvamme and Grams voting aye; Councilmembers Pfeifer and Johnson and  Mayor Zieman voting nay, the Ordinance was defeated.

69/13.8kV Front Street Substation Project Acceptance – Public Works Director Moulton requested final acceptance of the Front Street Substation project in the total cost of $420,630.60 and authorization to make final payment to the contractor in the amount of $37,738.45.  Moulton also noted that Stage 2 of the improvements at the substation would take place in the future.  In motion by Pfeifer, seconded by Grams, Resolution No. 2018-59 entitled “Resolution Accepting 69/13.8kV Front Street Substation Improvements Project And Authorizing Final Payment“ was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2018-59 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 22.

2018 Seal Coating Project Bid Award – Public Works Director Moulton requested award of the bid for the 2018 Seal Coating Project to Caldwell Asphalt at $2.545 per gallon for a total price on 100 blocks of $132,818.46.  In motion by Johnson, seconded by Brand, Resolution No. 2018-60 entitled “Resolution Awarding Bid For 2018 Seal Coating Project“ was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2018-60 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 22.

2018 Asphalt Purchase Bid Award – Public Works Director Moulton requested award of the bid for the 2018 Asphalt Purchase to Southern Minnesota Construction (SMC) at the price of $52.73 per ton based on $2.15 per mile transportation charges to the City.  Moulton noted that the base price submitted by W.W. Blacktopping was actually lower than SMC’s base price, but with the additional distance to drive to obtain materials from W.W. Blacktopping, the overall lower price was actually from SMC.  In motion by Kvamme, seconded by Grams, Resolution No. 2018-61 entitled “Resolution Awarding Bid for 2018 Asphalt Purchase“ was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2018-61 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 22.

TH 99 Reconstruction Project Change Orders – Public Works Director Moulton recommended approval of two change orders for the TH 99 Reconstruction Project and extension of the completion date to June 1, 2018.  Moulton reviewed the additional work orders for the project as well as the change orders and a supplemental agreement for the planter wall.  Moulton also provided information on the funding sources for the change orders.  In motion by Pfeifer, seconded by Brand, Resolution No. 2018-62 entitled “Resolution Approving Change Orders On Broadway Avenue (TH99) From Minnesota Avenue (TH169) To The Minnesota River“ was introduced.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2018-62 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 22.

Recreation and Leisure Services Director Job Description – City Administrator Prafke recommended modifications to the job description for Recreation and Leisure Services Director which hadn’t been modified for over 25 years.  Prafke noted essential physical requirements and desired qualifications were being added to the descriptions.  Councilmember Kvamme requested changes to the description to indicate the Director would be the City’s representative with area organizations such as Gustavus Adolphus College and School District #508 and for State and regional sporting groups.  Prafke noted that those responsibilities would normally be assigned by his office under “other duties as assigned”.   Kvamme asked to have the information included in the description.  In motion by Pfeifer, seconded by Brand, Resolution No. 2018-63 entitled “Resolution Authorizing Modifications To Director Of Recreation And Leisure Services Director Job Description“ was introduced with Councilmember Kvamme’s requested changes.  Upon roll call, with all in favor, the Resolution was declared passed and adopted.  A complete copy of Resolution No. 2018-63 is contained in the City Administrator’s book entitled Council Resolutions 22.

Reports

“Police Officer Memorial Week/Day” Proclamation – Mayor Zieman proclaimed May 15, 2018 as “Police Officer Memorial Day” in Saint Peter and May 15-21, 2018 as “Police Officer Memorial Week” in recognition of the services provided by the Officers of the Saint Peter Police Department.

Goal Session Schedule – City Administrator Prafke reminded the Council of the goal session scheduled for April 30, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. in the Governors’ Room.

Director of Finance – City Administrator Prafke reported new Finance Director Sally Vogel had begun work.

City Administrator Prafke reported the Public Works Department, which had started spring street sweeping three times but was unable to complete the work due to the late spring snowstorms, was attempting, for the third time, to do complete sweeping which helps prevent pollutants from entering the Minnesota River.

Public Works Director Moulton reminded everyone that hydrant flushing, which had also been delayed due to all the late spring snowstorms, would begin on April 30th.

There being no further business, a motion was made by Pfeifer, seconded by Brand, to adjourn.  With all in favor, the motion carried and the meeting adjourned at 8:29 p.m.