March 14, 2017
Annual Town Meeting

The Annual Town Meeting was held at Pequaywan Fire Hall and convened at 8:12 p.m. with 21 residents and one non-resident present.

Meeting called to order: Town Clerk Lita Wallace called the meeting to order. Phyllis Mead volunteered to be moderator. Copies of 2016 Annual Meeting Minutes were provided to attendees and read by Phyllis. Correction on March 2016 Annual Minutes, Road Repair – change Cty 44 to Cty 256. Motioned by Kathy Sluka, seconded by Donald Swanstrom, none opposed, motion carried.

Result of Township Election – One Supervisor and Treasurer position were on the ballot this year. Results of the election are as follows:

  • Supervisor: Donald Swanstrom (18 votes), write-ins: Dale Brooks (1), Doug Dressen (1), Daryl Waldriff (1)
  • Treasurer, write-in (Bonnie Dressen (2) Keith Stonebrenner (1)
  • Adoption of Option B: Yes (16), No (2)

Summary: Donald Swanstrom was elected as Supervisor and Option B to appoint a treasurer was voted to pass

Widening of West Branch Road:  St. Louis County would like the turn-around for the snow plow to be widened and snow bank pushed further. The county said that they will not plow snow unless the township provide a bigger turnaround. Discussions:

  • Ballpark cost is $30,000.00.
  • In completing this project, properties in those areas will be affected as trees would have to be cut down which could upset property owners.
  • Can the township purchase its own snowplow truck instead of spending the money on the project? Someone offered to plow the snow. However, what happens if the individual is not available to do the plowing? Would there be volunteers to create a committee to study the pros and cons?
  • How about abandoning the road? One argues that is not easy to do as what happened to a road in the nearby township.

Logging the township land:  Pequaywan township has an agreement with Wastewood Recyclers to clear all dead trees this summer and leave all pine and desirable species. Then, we’ll check next year if we need to transplant.

  • Logging the township land – to get to the township land for logging, there is a wedge of land that the county is responsible for between the main road and the township land. The county wanted the town to pay $1078 (the estimated value of the lumber) to allow the township access to the area. They reneged on a deal for them to put an entry from Rossini Road to the town land without getting paid $1078. We offered to purchase the land for $1.078 but they declined as any sale has to be done thru bid.

Report from Pequaywan Fire & EMS:  Steve Pelto reported, on behalf of Dale Brooks, that there were 6-7 medical calls and two fire calls. They received two grants including gears for $80,000 worth of equipment.

FireWise:  Judy Strom reported that DNR grant was for $27,942.00. Township share was paid entirely through volunteer hours ($20,600.00 or 895.6 hours) most from cutting and removal of trees. The grant was used for:

  • removal of trees two times during summer 2016, picked up and chipped at gravel pit, largest expense nearly $20,000.00
  • mailing of Firewise materials to all township residents
  • website, pequaywantownship.org/firewise
  • new 911 address signs for those who did not have a sign or the new reflective 192 signs
  • new updated directory mailed to all township property owners

Thanks to the committee: Judith Strom, Lee Kaplan, Phyllis Mead, Scott Mead, Marialice Arndt, Richard Arndt.

Set the levy:  Lee Kaplan motioned to set the levy for taxes at $30,000 for 2018, seconded by Doug Nelson, none opposed, motion carried. $13,500 of the levy will go towards Pequaywan Fire Department.

Set voting hours:
7:00 am – 8:00 pm, Primary and General Election
10:00 am – 8:00 pm, Special Primary and General Election
5:00 pm – 8:00 pm, Township Election
Motioned and seconded, none opposed, motion carried.

Monthly meeting date/time: Second Tuesday of each month, 7:30 pm at Pequaywan Fire Hall

Annual meeting date/time:  Second Tuesday during the month of March following the Town Election

March Town Meeting: meeting following the Annual Meeting

Posting Places: West Branch Road sign board; Pequaywan Fire & EMS bulletin board; Pequaywan Inn bulletin board; pequaywantownship.org website; pequaywan.com website

Annual Board of Appeals and Equalization date:  April 26, 2017, 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm, Pequaywan       Fire Hall

Citizen comments/concerns:  The Town thanks Kim Hand for her dedicated service as treasurer for the last two years.

Meeting was motioned by Lita Wallace, seconded by Doug Dressen to adjourn at 8:40 p.m. Motion carried.

Respectfully submitted
Lita Wallace, Pequaywan Town Clerk

 

February 14, 2017
Township Board Meeting

The meeting was called to order at 7:30 by Chair Scott Mead.

AttendanceSupervisors Scott Mead, Lee Kaplan and Don Swanstrom; Treasurer Kim Hand; and Clerk Lita Wallace. Number of resident/s present –3; Number of non-resident/s present – 2

Clerk’s Report  – Scott motioned to approve January 2017 minutes, second by Lee, motion carried. (Scott yay, Lee yay, Don yay)

Treasurer’s Report

$261,454.89 – Cash on hand as of December 31, 2016
$        532.20 – Deposits
$   15,212.57 – Expenditures (includes $13,500 for Pequaywan Fire Department)
$246,774.52– Cash on hand as of January 31, 2017

Motioned to approve by Lee, seconded by Scott, motion carried. (Scott yay, Lee yay, Don yay), motion carried.

Old Business

Widening West Branch Road – Scott had previously met with Steve Tverberg of St. Louis County Public Works Department and were advised that the banks need to be cut back so they can have a place to push snow. Banks need to be dug out, trees taken out and roots disposed off. Stumps maybe put on the side of the road as long as it does not damage the wetlands. Scott also met with Nick Elmquist and, based on that meeting, he estimates a ballpark cost could amount to $30,000.00, on the high end. The amount will include removal of trees, hauling in gravel and filling. The areas are on the right-of-way but property owners need to be involved, as trees on their properties will be affected.

Clearing dead trees from township land – aside from dead trees, poplar and other undesirable trees will need to be cleared. St. Louis County previously informed us that they will give us permit entry on the wedge of land that they administer on behalf of the state and they will also mark the east boundary. However, since they determined that the timber has an estimated value of $1078.00, they want us to pay them $1078.00. This was not mentioned during the last few months discussion with them and this is something we will not do. Don suggested that since the land is a very small wedge, we should offer to buy it for $1,078.00. Another option is to figure out a different entry. We should also try to have a contract completed with Beth Peterson to mark the East boundary. Scott will contact Randy Roff of St. Louis County to offer the purchase of the wedge for $1,078.00.

Township Election – March 14, 2017, 5:00-8:00 p.m., Pequaywan Fire Department

Township Election Candidate Update: Opening for one supervisor and treasurer. Don Swanstrom submitted candidacy for supervisor position and no one submitted candidacy for treasurer. Option B will be on the ballot to allow the supervisors to appoint the treasurer.

Discussion on possibility of moving the funds from CapitalOne to Superior Choice Credit Union

New Business

February 15, county assessor notified township clerks of forthcoming dates for meetings of Local Board of Appeal and Equalization (LBAE). MS § 274.01 – Pequaywan Township is scheduled on April 26, 2017, 5:00-6:00 p.m., at Pequaywan Fire Department

Annual Township Meeting – March 14, 2017, estimated 8:30 p.m. after the Town Election

Township Board Meeting – March 14, 2017, estimated 9:00 p.m. after the Annual Township Meeting

March 11 – Pequaywan Town Clerk open office for absentee voting from 10 am until 12 noon. MS § 203B.085. Contact town clerk at peqclerk@gmail.com or 218-525-4068 for location.

Correspondence

Received:

MN State Auditors Office – reminder that 2016 Financial Reporting Form is due March 31, 2017 – CTAS reports are reconciled for both treasurer and clerk and is ready for submission. Kim will submit it.

St. Louis County – 2016 Annual Report of Outstanding Indebtedness due February 3, 2017 – mailed out in January

MN State Auditors Office – Notice that CTAS software update is available – both laptops (treasurer and clerk) have been updated. There is no cost since we paid a one-time fee for the software

Linda Britton – Notice of additional $20 DAT dues ($40/year starting in 2017)

MN Benefit Association statement for life insurance due April 1 – payment will be mailed after the March 14 election to reflect new officer

Flyer from MAT for Spring Short Courses, registration is $50 each – training offered does not apply to anyone so nobody is attending

Sent:

  • 2016 Local Government Lobbying Form
  • Outstanding Indebtedness Form
  • W-2/W-3 Forms to Social Security Administration and State of Minnesota
  • Employees W-2 Employee Wage and Tax Statement

Claims and Payroll:  Checks #1115 to 1119 in the total amount of $1,997.14

Comment

Next Meeting: March 14, 2017, 9:00 p.m. (after the Annual Meeting), Pequaywan Fire Department, 8764 Pequaywan Lake Road

Motioned to Adjourn at 8:00 p.m. by Scott, second by Don, motion carried. (Scott yay, Lee yay, Don yay)

Respectfully submitted
Lita Wallace, Town Clerk

January 10, 2017
Township Board Meeting

The meeting was called to order at 7:30 by Chair Scott Mead.

AttendanceSupervisors Scott Mead, Lee Kaplan and Don Swanstrom; Treasurer Kim Hand; and Clerk Lita Wallace. Number of resident/s present – 4; Number of non-resident/s present – 2

Clerk’s Report  – Scott motioned to approve the minutes, seconded by Lee, motion carried. (Scott yay, Lee yay, Don yay)

Treasurer’s Report

  • Review of 2016 finances and budget for 2017
  • $257,305.98 – Cash on hand as of November 30
    $     6,420.42 – Deposits
    $     2,271.51 – Expenditures
    __________
    $261,454.89– Cash on hand as of December 31
    Motioned to approve by Lee, seconded by Don, motion carried. (Scott yay, Lee yay, Don yay).

Old Business

  • Form 941 – quarterly (vs. monthly) reporting is still applicable – township with less than $2500 quarterly tax liability, such as Pequaywan township, can continue to send quarterly distribution
  • Treasurer position opening – the township needs a qualified individual to perform the duties of a treasurer. A notice had been sent out but there was no response. The opening was also posted on the township webpage. We may have to recourse to Option B as we did with the clerk position. Ray Barnes of North Star Township had served as their treasurer for a few years now. If Option B passes on the ballot, he is willing to take on the position.
  • Logging on the Township land – Seeking assistance from St. Louis County to take care of getting permit from the state for access to a piece of land between Rossini and the township land.  Beth Peterson’s hourly rate is $27.38 per hour. More discussion later if the township will hire Beth and at what rate.

New Business

  • Updated Timesheet/Expense Report Forms – updated to include 2017 mileage rates
  • 2016 W2 Forms – will be available end of January
  • Absentee ballot – contact Town Clerk Lita Wallace, peqclerk@gmail.com or 218-525-4068
  • Tuesday, January 17, 2017 – last day for Candidate filing period, Clerk’s Office at 3081 Little Cloquet River Road, Duluth, will be open from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Correspondence

Received:

  • Social Security Administration – 2016 W2 filing reminder
  • MAT – Notice on Board of Equalization and Clerk Training
  • Linda Britton – Notice of $20 DAT dues
  • MN Dept of Ag (MDA) – mandatory annual report (MN Statute 18.81) on noxious weed concerns and needs of counties/townships due 1/15/17
  • St Louis County Assessor’s Office – submission of LBAE training certificate due 2/1/17
  • Minnesota Township Insider Magazine with 2017 Township Calendar
  • MAT – Consolidated Liability Insurance Premium Notice for $973.00
  • State of MN Secretary of State – Example Ballot requirements for March Township Election

Sent:

  • 4Q 2016 MN Unemployment Report
  • 4Q Form 941
  • MN Dept of Ag form on noxious weed concerns

Claims and Payroll:  Checks #1111 to 1114 in the total amount of $15,212.57

Comment

  • A resident suggested to hire a private citizen to plow snow in West Branch Road. Scott explained that if the township hires an individual to plow  snow and later on no longer be able to do the work, the township will then end up not having anyone to plow the road as the county will not do it anymore.
  • Dale Brooks, Pequaywan Fire Chief, provided a report on the activities and financials of the Fire Department in 2016. The Fire Department is again requesting $13,500 proposed funding for 2018. Motion to approve by Lee, second by Don, motion approved. (Scott yay, Lee yay, Don yay)

Next Meeting:

February 14, 2017, 7:30 p.m., Pequaywan Fire Department, 8764 Pequaywan Lake Road

Motioned to Adjourn at 8:25 p.m. by Lee, seconded by Don, motion carried. (Scott yay, Lee yay, Don yay).

Respectfully submitted by,
Lita Wallace, Town Clerk