March 9, 2021 Board of Canvass Meeting

Meeting was called to order at 9:20 p.m. by Chair Kuettel.

Town officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, Supervisor Donald Swanstrom, Supervisor Douglas Dressen (via telephone), Treasurer Raymond G. Barnes, Clerk Lita Wallace, Deputy clerk Amber Cruz and Deputy Treasurer Lynne Scalzo

The Town of Pequaywan Canvassing Board certified the following official results for the March 9, 2021 Town Election:

Charles Kuettel was elected for the Supervisor position with term date of 2021-2024.

The Town of Pequaywan Canvassing Board consisted of:

Charles Kuettel, Chair
Donald Swanstrom, Supervisor
Douglas Dressen, Supervisor

Meeting was motioned to adjourn at 9:25 p.m. by Dresson, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Respectfully submitted by:
Amber Cruz, deputy clerk

March 9, 2021, Township Board Meeting

Meeting was called to order at 8:28 p.m. by Charles Kuettel.

Attendance:
Town Officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, supervisor Donald Swanstrom, supervisor Doug Dressen (via telephone), clerk Lita Wallace, deputy clerk Amber Cruz, treasurer Raymond Barnes and deputy treasurer Lynne Scalzo
Guests: Ted Wallace and Shane Stolp

Clerk’s Report:
Copy of February 9, 2021, minutes were provided to everyone in attendance. Swanstrom motioned to approve the minutes, Dressen seconded the motion, motion carried 3-0-0.

Treasurer’s Report:
February 2021
Total Funds on hand as of 02/01/2021 (Includes Investments) – $164,130.68
Plus: Deposits – $4,231.16
—–Town Road Aid – $1,448.21
—–Taconite Production Tax – $2,653.00
—–Interest on Accounts – $129.95
Less: Disbursements (February) – $2,323.43
—–Payroll – $1,447.68
—–MAT/SLC Dues – $469.56
—–Other Expenses – $406.19
Total Funds on hand as of 02/28/2021 – $166,038.41
February Check # 1627 – 1635 & 20121 (electronic withdrawal for checks)

March 2021

Claims (March) – $2,763.60
March Check # 1636 – 1651
No transfers to the Checking Account will be needed

Swanstrom and Kuettel signed the financial papers. Swanstrom motioned to accept treasurer’s report, Dressen seconded the motion. Motion carried 3-0-0.

Old Business:

  • Reminder: LBAE (Local Board of Appeal and Equalization) meeting scheduled on May 5, 2021, 3:00 – 4:00 p.m., via teleconference
  • Results for the Township Election: Charles Kuettel was elected as supervisor with 59 ballots/votes
  • Motion to appoint Amber Cruz as clerk and Lynne Scalzo as treasurer effective March 10, 2021. Motion was brought by Swanstrom, seconded by Dressen, motion carried 3-0-0
  • Swanstrom motioned to hire Lita Wallace as the deputy clerk and Raymond Barnes as the deputy treasurer effective March 10, 2021, to continue the smooth training transition; and if needed, to provide back-up for clerk and treasurer duties. The motion was seconded by Dressen, motion carried 3-0-0
  • Two proposals were received for the open IT position for the Township website; one from Daisy Wallace and the other from Faster Solutions. Both proposals were cost comparable. Motion to hire Daisy Wallace for the IT position was given by Dressen, and seconded by Kuettel, motion carried 2-1-0.
  • Update on the request to vacate part of River Road easement: This request is being looked into further. The Board is to inquire with the county on jurisdiction of the easement. Also, the utility companies will be contacted to find out their use of the easement
  • Update on road grants: the township would need the approval of St Louis County which would require a survey and engineering work; this would require approximately $30,000 before the grant could be applied for

New Business

  • Email from St. Louis County that Covid-19 vaccinations to those 65 and older is open
  • 2022 Levy: Donald Swanstrom motioned to accept the 2022 Levy, Dressen seconded the motion, motion carried 3-0-0
    $18,000.00 – Total General Fund
    $16,500.00 – Fire and EMS$
    $  2,000.00 – Building and Property Maintenance
    $  3,600.00 – Road and Bridge (Ongoing Maintenance)
    $15,000.00 – Road and Bridge (Capital Reserve)
    _______
    $55,100.00    Total Levies
  • April Town Board Meeting and Reorganization Meeting are to be held via teleconference

Correspondence
Received:

  • Email from St Louis County, news release on the County Board approving the funding of eight projects to combat aquatic invasive species
  • Letter from the United States Department of Commerce U.S. Census Bureau on the Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS) as well as the Annual Response and Contact Update Form for the BAS
  • Email from the United States Department of Commerce U.S. Census Bureau reminding about the 2021 Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS) March 1, 2021 deadline approaching
  • Email from Brad Gustafson of the St. Louis County Government Services Center Planning and Community Developer on the Round 2 Applications for CDBG-CV and ESG-CV. Deadlines for the applications is March 22, 2021 at 4:30 p.m.
  • Voter Master List and roster from St Louis County Election for March Town Election
  • Invoice from Minnesota Benefit Association in the amount of $224.00 for town officer’s life insurance
  • Inquiry from North Shore Title verifying to confirm that the township does not have any assessments on properties at the township
  • Email from Minnesota Office of State Auditor on the submission deadline of the 2020 State Auditor data files and financial statements
  • Email from Minnesota Association of Townships that included the February 2021 newsletter
  • Emails from Cathy Rouleau of St Louis County Association of Townships (SLCAT) (1) double checking email addresses of those attending the SLCAT meeting on May 26, 2021; (2) February 24, 2021 meeting agenda;(3) minutes of the January 27, 2021 meeting
  • Email from Minnesota Association of Townships on Legislative Update and Advocacy Alert
  • Email from St. Louis County that “Anyone 65+ is now eligible for immediate vaccination with St Louis County Public Health,  contact the vaccine scheduling (email is preferred): vaccineScheduling@stlouiscountymn.gov or Vaccine Scheduling line 218-726-2623”.
  • Approved decision of the St. Louis County Planning Commission on conditional use permit for short-term rental

Sent

  • Email to Lora Skarman at the St Louis County Assessor’s Office on the confirmation of the LBAE meeting date and time for Pequaywan Township as well as informing of the change of clerk to take place March 10, 2021
  • Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS) Annual Response and Contact Update Form was sent to the United States Department of Commerce U.S. Census Bureau with updated clerk information
  • CTAS report for year 2020 submitted to the State of Minnesota Auditor’s Office

Public Comment

  • Shane Stolp asked for clarification of the final decision from St Louis County on the short—term rental located in Pequaywan township
  • Shane Stolp inquired on the light complaint that was mentioned in past meetings/minutes

Next meeting, April 12, 2021, is to be held at 7:30 p.m. via teleconference

Swanstrom motioned to adjourn the meeting at 9:04 p.m., seconded by Dressen, motion carried 3-0-0

Respectively submitted by,
Amber Cruz, deputy clerk
Lita Wallace, clerk

 

March 9, 2021, Annual Town Meeting in-person (Unapproved)

Meeting called to order: Town clerk Lita Wallace called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. The meeting was held at the Pequaywan Fire Hall.

Attendance: Lita Wallace, Dan Ahonen, Amber Cruz, Scott Gronseth, Ross Gustafson, Charles Kuettel, Phyllis Mead, Scott Mead, Donald Swanstrom, Shane Stolp, Lynne Scalzo and  Ted Wallace

Election of a moderator: Phyllis Mead was nominated and elected as the moderator

Announce Agenda for Rest of Meeting (moderator, subject to modification by vote of electorate): no change

2020 Minutes: Motion to approve minutes of previous year’s Annual Meeting Minutes (copies provided by clerk): Charles Kuettel motioned to approve 2020 Annual Meeting Minutes, seconded by Scott Gronseth, motion carried

Reading of the Board of Audit Report as posted by clerk prior to meeting

Annual Board of Appeals and Equalization: scheduled on May 5, 2021, 3:00-4:00 p.m. via teleconference

Result of Township Election: Wallace reported that there is one supervisor position open for election. 59 mail-in/absentee ballots were received out of 148 resident voters. Charles Kuettel was elected with 59 votes.

Pequaywan Town Chair’s Road Report for West Branch Road:  Chair Charles Kuettel reported that the culvert remains a concern and will need replacement in the near future. There has been ongoing concern about the dead/dying trees along the road. The township will have to work with landowners to address the removal of the dead/dying trees.

New clerk and new treasurer effective March 10, 2021: Amber Cruz and Lynne Scalzo have been appointed as clerk and treasurer respectively. Lita Wallace will stay as deputy clerk and Raymond Barnes as deputy treasurer for one year.

Update, suggestions and discussion on possible projects for the land owned by the township in Rossini Road, including the tax forfeited property purchased from St Louis County. Plans for tree and brush drop-off was discussed for the months of May, June and July. No dates were set.

2022 Levy: Discussion and motion to approve general levy and any dedicated levies (road & bridge, plus others determined helpful to treat as designated and not just a budget item Pequaywan Fire & EMS in the amount of $16,500.00. The levy was motioned for approval by Kuettel and seconded by Gronseth, motion carried.

SUMMARY 2022 LEVY 2022 BUDGET
General Fund $18,000.00 $18,060.00
Road and Bridges (On-going Maintenance) $3,600.00 $3,500.00
Building/Property

Maintenance Fund

$2,000.00 $2,000.00
Fire and EMS $16,500.00 $16,500.00
Roads and Bridges (Capital Reserve) $15,000.00 $15,000.00
Total $55,100.00 $55,060.00

  Other years’ financials

SUMMARY 2021 LEVY 2021 BUDGET
General Fund $12,000.00 $15,500.00
Road and Bridges (On-going Maintenance) $3,000.00 $3,000.00
Fire and EMS $16,500.00 $16,500.00
Building/Property Maintenance Fund $0.00 $1,500.00
Roads and Bridges (Capital Reserve) 12,000.00 10,000.00
Total 43,500.00 49,500.00

 

SUMMARY 2020 2020 LEVY 2020 BUDGET 2020 RECEIPTS 2020 DISBURSEMENTS
General Fund $  5,000.00 $19,000.00 $25,600.57 $29,195.82
Road and Bridge (On-going Maintenance $3,000.00 $  2,500.00 $  5,518.96 $  3,242.50
Fire and EMS $15,000.00 $5,000.00 $15,020.82 $15,000.00
Building/Property

Maintenance Fund

$0.00 $0.00 $1,500.00 $0.00
Roads and Bridges (Capital Reserve) $12,000.00 $  5,000.00 $7,485.12 $0.00
Total $35,000.00 $41,500.00 $55,125.47 $47,438.32

2022 Annual Town Meeting: the state set the Annual Town Meeting on the second Tuesday of March following the Township Election. The Annual Town Meeting will be held at the Pequaywan Fire Hall.

Motion to set monthly Town Board Meeting date and time: Don Swanstrom motioned to set the Town Board meeting on the second Tuesday of each month at 7:30 p.m. at the Pequaywan Fire Hall. The motion was seconded by Shane Stolp. All were in favor, motion carried. Exception of March meeting to be scheduled after the Annual Town Meeting.

Motion to set voting place: Ross Gustafson motioned to set Pequaywan Fire Hall as the primary voting place; and Pequaywan Trail Blazer Snowmobile Club as a possible secondary voting place (once they are contacted for confirmation)

Motion to set voting times:
7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m., Presidential Nomination Primary Election, Primary Election and General Election
7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m., State Election
10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m., Special Primary Election and Special General Election
5:00 p.m. – 8:00p.m., Township Election

Scott Mead motioned to set the voting times listed, seconded by Ross Gustafson, all in favor, motioned carried

Posting areas:
-Pequaywan Association website: pequaywantownship.org
-West Branch Road Sign board
-Pequaywan Fire & EMS bulletin board
-Pequaywan Inn bulletin board

General Discussion of Items of Concern:
Shane Stolp inquired about the teleconference Township Board meetings and the accessibility of the phone number and passcode. Both the number and the passcode are posted on the Pequaywan Association website: pequaywantownship.org

Adjourn: Charles Kuettel motioned to adjourn the Annual Town Meeting at 8:09 p.m., seconded by Scott Gronseth, all in favor, motion carried

Respectively submitted by,
Amber Cruz, deputy clerk
Lita Wallace, clerk

February 9, 2021, Township Board Meeting via teleconference

Meeting was called to order at 7:37 p.m. by Charles Kuettel

Attendence:
Town Officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, supervisor Donald Swanstrom, supervisor Douglas Dressen, clerk Lita Wallace, treasurer Raymond Barnes, deputy treasurer Lynne Scalzo, and deputy clerk Amber Cruz.
Guests: Daisy Wallace, Bonnie Dressen, Jim Crace, Charmin Thramer, Greg Planting, Ted Wallace

Clerk’s Report
Since the meeting was conducted via teleconference, the supervisors read the January 12, 2021 minutes from the town webpage. Dressen motioned to approve the minutes, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0

Treasurer’s Report
JANUARY 2021
Total Funds on hand as of 01/01/2021 (Includes Investments) – $183,114.48
Plus: Deposits – $700.26
Tax Apportionment – $565.18
Filing Fee – $2.00
Interest on Accounts – $133.08
Less: Disbursements (January) – $19,684.06
Payroll – $1,085.44
Insurance – $973.00
Fire Department – $16,500.00
Other Expenses – $1125.62
Total Funds on hand as of 01/31/2021 – $165,130.68
January Check # 1614 – 1626

FEBRUARY 2021
Claims (February) – $2,323.43
February Check # 1627 – 1635 & 20121
No transfers to the Checking Account will be needed.

Old Business
• File retention- Wallace went over the files in the filing cabinet and took out election materials for shredding and left files that are required for permanent retention; i.e. historical, minutes, and financials. There is a need for the purchase of another filing cabinet. Dressen motioned for the approval of a filing cabinet purchase, the motion was seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried 3-0-0.
• Effective March 10, 2021, Amber Cruz and Lynne Scalzo will take over as clerk and treasurer, respectively, while Wallace will stay as deputy clerk and Barnes as deputy treasurer for one year. Wallace is going to check on the need for Cruz and Scalzo to retake oath of office for new positions.
• March Town election by mail-in balloting: All ballots must be received by the town clerk by 3:00 p.m. on March 9. Envelope must be signed by a witness.
• Opening for an IT to manage trouble shooting the town’s webpages using WordPress: Don mentioned that he received a proposal from a company in Duluth. Daisy Wallace was asked to submit a proposal on the costs/ services she would provide.
• The March 9 Annual Town Meeting will take place in-person at the Pequaywan firehall at 7:30 p.m. with the option to table the meeting and reconvene in May. This meeting is to be followed by the March Town Board Meeting at 8 p.m. and the Board of Canvass Meeting at 8:30 p.m. Swanstrom motioned to approve the location, and time of all the meetings, Dressen seconded, motion carried, 3-0-0. April meetings will be discussed during March meeting.
• Public hearing re-Conditional Use Permit Application for short-term rental of a property located in the township: There is an open hearing at the county on February 11, 2021. Below is the link to access the hearing.

New Business
• Schedule of LBAE Meeting, May 5, 2021, 3:00-4:00 p.m. via teleconference
• Motion to accept upcoming training for elected/appointed town officers Dressen motioned to accept, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried 3-0-0
• Review future road grants: Scalzo is going to look into the requirements for next year and start working on the application this summer. (see below for more information)

Correspondence
Received:

• Email from SLCAT with January meeting agenda scheduled on January 21, 2021
• Email from Office of the State Auditor Government Information Division advising that the 2020 State Auditor CTAS data files and financial statements may now be submitted with a deadline date of March 31, 2021
• Follow-up email from St Louis County Planning and Community Development re-telephone Public Hearing on February 11, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. for a property located at 9335 Pequaywan Lake Road.For info on how to participate, visit the county website at: https://www.stlouiscountymn.gov/departments-a-z/planning-development/boards-committeesLink for the hearing: (Password, case-sensitive is: Planning) https://stlouiscountymn.webex.com/stlouiscountymn/onstage/g.php?MTID=e198a86386337be2e5585ffa0f5908da9
• Email from St Louis County Planning and Community Development Department re-Phase 3 SLC Small Business Covid-19 Relief Grant Guidelines and Application
• January newsletter from Minnesota Association of Townships with advice on conducting March Annual Meeting for COVID-19; CTAS 2021 update; IRS standard mileage rate of $0.56 per mile; Local Road Improvement Program (LRIP) grant application for road improvement projects; schedule of seminar/web online training for town officers
• Email from St Louis County with Master List of voters for March Town Election
• Email from St Louis County re 2020 Annual Township Noxious Weed Report to be filled out and submitted to Land and Minerals Department
• Email from Minnesota Benefit Association re- enrollment period for Group Life and Group Disability Income program for MN Township Officers
• Email from US Census Bureau on Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS) they are conducting in 2021
• Email from Office of the State Auditor on the availability of CTAS 2021 program for download
• Two (2) Absentee Ballot Application
• Bill for SLCAT ($161.80) and MAT ($307.76) dues for 2021

Sent:
• Sent by postage mail 140 mail-in ballot envelopes to resident voters
• Emails to MAT and St. Louis County Elections with revised list of officers adding new deputy clerk and deputy treasurer
• Submitted the 2020 Annual Noxious Weed Report to St Louis County, Land and Minerals Department c/o Kristin Fogard via email

Public Comment:
• Resident request to vacate a road easement that runs into private property. This is a follow-up from a discussion last September 2020. The supervisors are agreeable to vacate the road and will look at the procedure to make it happen either by motion or resolution to dissolve the easement. Thramer provided the material, Worksheet & Sample Documents for Establishing, Altering or Vacating Roads, from Minnesota Association of Townships and a map of the property.– Charmin Thramer, Greg Planting
• Lighting issue noted in November Board meeting minutes – Shane Stolp (note: this was not discussed as Stolp was not in attendance)
• Short term rental conditional use application at 9335 Pequaywan Lake Road – Jim Crace, Patti Rich. Crace explained the past history of the property as a previous short term rental but applying again due to new regulations by the county and the restrictions they require for renters.

Next meeting March 9, 2021, after the March Annual Meeting, at Pequaywan Firehall.

Dressen motioned to adjourn the meeting at 8:35 p.m., seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried 3-0-0.

Respectively submitted by,
Amber Cruz, deputy clerk
Lita Wallace, clerk

January 26, 2021, Budget Meeting

Meeting was called to order at 7:45 pm by Charles Kuettel.

Attendance:
Town officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, supervisor Donald Swanstrom, supervisor Douglas Dressen (via telephone), clerk Lita Wallace, treasurer Raymond Barnes, deputy treasurer Lynne Scalzo, and deputy clerk Amber Cruz.

Discussed and set-up budget amounts for 2021
Budget in the amount of $49,500.00 that was approved in 2020 for 2021 was not changed. Swanstrom motioned to approve, seconded by Kuettel, motion carried, 2-0-0.

Discussed and set-up budget amounts for 2022
Proposed budget:
General Fund: $18,060.00
Road and Bridges (On-going Maintenance): $3,500.00
Building/Property Maintenance Fund: $2,000.00
Fire and EMS: $16,500.00
Roads and Bridges (Capitol Reserve): $15,000.00
Total Amount: $55,060.00

Swanstrom motioned to approve the proposed budget in the total amount of $55,060.00, seconded by Kuettel, motion carried, 2-0-0.

Discussed levy recommendation for 2022 for presentation to the residents at the March Townhall Meeting
Proposed Levy:

General Fund: $18,000.00
Road and Bridges (On-going Maintenance): $3,600.00
Building/Property Maintenance Fund: $2,000.00
Fire and EMS: $16,500.00
Roads and Bridges (Capital Reserve): $15,000.00
Total Amount: $55,100.00

Swanstrom motioned to approve the proposed levy in the total amount of $55,100.00, seconded by Kuettel, motion carried, 2-0-0.

Kuettel motioned to adjourn the meeting at 9:00 p.m., seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 2-0-0.

Respectively submitted by,
Amber Cruz, Deputy Clerk
Lita Wallace, Clerk

January 26, 2021, Board of Audit Meeting

Meeting was called to order at 7:00 pm by Charles Kuettel

Attendance:
Town officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, supervisor Donald Swanstrom, supervisor Douglas Dressen (via telephone), clerk Lita Wallace, treasurer Raymond Barnes, deputy treasurer Lynne Scalzo, and deputy clerk Amber Cruz
Guest: Ted Wallace

Review Clerk/Treasurer’s Reports

• Wallace provided a copy of the CTAS Summary of Receipts report from January to December 2020.
• Reviewed treasurer and clerk’s Disbursements Ledgers (compared Fund/Account/Object Codes); board members selected 3+ disbursements to review and check.
1. #1524 reviewed: disbursement to Donald Swanstrom for meeting attendance- payroll/schedule was used to verify.
2. #1529 reviewed: disbursement to Lita Wallace- Election judge hours, office supplies and mileage claim used to verify.
3. #1515 reviewed: dispersed to Pequaywan Fire Department- no claim due to approval of board during a meeting (oral agreement, see minutes from 1/08/2020).
4. #1539 reviewed- disbursement to Lee Kaplan for township’s website annual renewal.
• Reviewed treasurer and clerk’s Receipts Ledgers (compare Fund/Account) – do direct deposit have triplicate receipts, verified that deposits are noted on the appropriate bank statement, board members selected and reviewed 3+ receipts.
1. #80320 reviewed- from ’20 MN DNR PILT- receipts shown by treasurer and confirmed in both clerk and treasurer’s ledgers.
2. #90120 and #90220 reviewed- 18 month certificate- receipts shown by treasurer and are broken down in books for placement into accounts.
3. #60320 reviewed- PNP Reimbursement for expenses incurred by the township during the Presidential Nomination Primary (PNP) election; email receipts for $1174.85 from the state auto deposit for placement into designated accounts.
• Reviewed Bank Statements to check that Cash Control Statement demonstrates same balance as the Bank Statement: Cash on hand balance of $183,114.48 on the December 2020 Bank statement shown by clerk matched the December 2020 Cash Control Statement.
• Verified that clerk and treasurer are balancing and reconciling bank statements (have the same balance), and Schedule 1 matched for both treasurer and clerk.

Swanstrom motioned to approve that all the records show no discrepancy, All the records matched to the penny; seconded by Kuettel, motion carried, 2-0-0.

Swanstrom motioned to adjourn the meeting at 7:40 pm, seconded by Kuettel; motion carried 2-0-0.

Respectively submitted by,
Amber Cruz, Deputy Clerk
Lita Wallace, Clerk

January 12, 2021 Township Board Meeting via teleconference

Meeting was called to order at 7:30 pm by Charles Kuettel

Attendance:

Town officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, supervisor Donald Swanstrom, supervisor Douglas Dressen, clerk Lita Wallace, treasurer Raymond Barnes, deputy treasurer Lynne Scalzo, and deputy clerk Amber Cruz.

Guests: Pequaywan Fire & EMS Fire Chief Dale Brooks, Paul Klassen and Lisa Klassen

Clerk’s Report: Since the meeting was conducted via teleconference, the supervisors read the December 8, 2020 minutes from the town webpage. Dressen motioned to approve the minutes, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Treasurer’s Report:
DECEMBER 2020
Total Funds on hand as of 12/01/2020 (Includes Investments) – $170,204.59
Plus: Deposits – $13,795.77
Tax Apportionment – $12,799.39
Township Aid – $864.00
Interest on Accounts – $132.38
Less: Disbursements (December) – $885.88
Payroll – $614.88
Office Expense – $16.00
Worker’s Compensation Policy – $255.00
Total Funds on hand as of 12/31/2020 – $183,114.48
December Check # 1606 – 1613

January 2021
Claims (January) – $19,684.06 (includes $16,500.00 for Pequaywan Fire & EMS)
January Check # 1614 – 1626
No transfers to the Checking Account will be needed.

Dressen motioned to approve the December 2020 Treasurer’s Report and Claims for January 2021, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.  As per Minn. Stat. 367.18, the township board has audited and approved the claim; (2) the clerk has indicated his or her approval that the board took the action indicated; (3) the treasurer indicates there is money available in the township’s account to pay the claims; and (4) the board has delegated the authority to issue the check.

Old Business

  • Township Board Meetings: February meeting will be held via teleconference.
  • March meetings (Annual Town Hall, Town Board, Board of Canvass) may be held via Zoom or in-person.
  • Board of Canvass meeting must be conducted within two days after the March Town Election (to certify the elected officer) by teleconference or in-person which will be discussed during February meeting.
  • If the Annual Town Hall and Town Board meetings are conducted in-person and if attendance reaches capacity (to maintain proper social distancing), the meetings will be tabled until warmer weather will permit an outdoors meeting. Levy is not due to St. Louis County until August so voting can be done in the spring. The two meetings will be discussed further during the February meeting. Brooks mentioned that the front area of the Pequaywan Firehall may be used if the weather is nice. Fire trucks may be taken out if there is no snow that day. Brooks also mentioned that he will test the Pequaywan Firehall for internet speeds for possible Zoom meeting usage.
  • New township officers: Amber Cruz and Lynne Scalzo where hired as the deputy clerk and deputy treasurer, respectively. Wallace sworn them in for the Oath of Office on January 9, 2021. Swanstrom motioned a $15.00/hour salary during their training phase up to March 9, 2021. On March 10, 2021, they will take over the clerk and treasurer positions and they will be paid the same salary as the present clerk and treasurer are receiving. Seconded by Dressen, motion carried, 3-0-0.
  • Swanstrom motioned to add Cruz and Scalzo as signatories for all the accounts with Superior Choice Credit Union, seconded by Dressen, motion carried, 3-0-0.
  • One hundred forty two (142) letters were sent by Wallace via postage mail advising resident voters of mail-in balloting for March 2021 Town Election. Ballots will be mailed no later than February 9, 2021 with return address sent to Wallace. Pequaywan Ballot Board will review the ballots and will be opened and counted March 9, 2021.
  • Reminder for 2 meetings: Board of Audit Meeting and Budget Meeting scheduled on January 26 at 7:00 p.m. at Pequaywan Firehall – this is an Open Meeting (we will follow COVID-19 guidelines – must wear a mask, hand sanitizer provided, social distancing to limit number of people)

 New Business

  • Brooks reported that in the near future, the roof of the firehall will need replacement. The cost is being looked at, as well as, avenues for payment. The fire department is setting aside money for the repairs. He submitted a budget spreadsheet for the fire department from the last few years and requested the amount of $16,500.00 for 2022, same as in 2021, for contribution from the township.
  • Approval of Resolution #2020-001, appointing 2021 Election Judges. Swanstrom motioned to approve, Dressen seconded, motion carried 3-0-0.
  • Approval of Resolution #2020-002, Appointing the Absentee and Mail-in Balloting Ballot Board for 2021 March Town Election. Swanstrom motioned to approve, Dressen seconded, motion carried 3-0-0.
  • Conditional use permit application for short-term rental for a property located in the township that St. Louis County is considering a meeting on February 11, 2021: Wallace is to send information to the supervisors about the approved St. Louis County Provisions for Short Term Rental for review before responding.
  • Opening for an individual to manage trouble shooting the town’s webpages using WordPress: Swanstrom mentioned that he knows someone and that he will talk with the individual.
  • Requests have been made to reduce the speeds on Pequaywan Lake Road from the north end of the big lake to Pequaywan Inn. A survey of the residents may be conducted, as well as checking with St. Louis County and state level. The state controls the speed limit.

Correspondence

Received:

  • Letter from St. Louis County Planning Commission re-conditional use permit application located in 9335 Pequaywan Lake Road for short-term rental and consideration for a meeting on February 11, 2021
  • Emails from Phil Chapman of St. Louis County Elections re: (1) approval for mail-in balloting and various email responses to inquiries; (2) Town Clerk Election Guide; (3) Absentee Voting Administration Guide; (4) address label file and list of resident voters for sending letters and ballots to resident voters for town election; and (5) envelopes use for mail-in balloting
  • Email from Minnesota Association of Townships with information on how to use mail-in voting for the March township election
  • Weekly email newsletters re-COVID-19 from St. Louis County
  • December 2020 newsletter from Minnesota Association of Townships
  • Email from St. Louis County Land Minerals Department re-2020 Annual Noxious Weed Report to be filled out and submitted by January 31, 2020
  • Email from Office of the State Auditor stating that CTAS 2021 is now available including 2021 Tax Tables
  • Invoice of $65.18 from St. Louis County Auditors Office for services completed in the preparation and delivery of the Proposed Tax Notice
  • Resume from applicants for clerk and treasurer positions
  • Affidavit of Candidacy from Charles Kuettel for supervisor position
  • Annual Report of Outstanding Indebtedness as of December 31, 2020, received rom St. Louis County Auditor’s Office to be completed by February 1, 2021.

 Sent: 

  • Resolution #2020-015, Authorizing Mail Balloting for 2021 March Town Election and Resolution #2020-008, Designating Annual Polling Place emailed to St. Louis County Elections
  • Workers’ Comp Survey mailed to MATIT
  • Emailed to St. Louis County a copy of Public Notice for the supervisor opening for March town election
  • Letters sent by postage mail to 142 resident voters re-mail-in balloting for March township election
  • Submitted the following documents via electronic filing to the State of Minnesota:  (1) Minnesota Unemployment Insurance; (2) Minnesota Sales and Use Tax; and (3) Minnesota Withholding
  • W-2s sent by postage mail to town officers
  • Deb Pomroy, Pequaywan Township Weed Inspector, completed and signed the 2020 Annual Township and City Report, co-signed by Kuettel, was submitted to the St. Louis County Agriculture Inspector
  • Annual Report of Outstanding Indebtedness as of December 31, 2020, sent to St. Louis County Auditor’s Office

Public Comment: None

Next Meeting: February 9, 2021, 7:30 p.m. via teleconference

Adjourn meeting: Dressen motioned to adjourn the meeting at 8:35 p.m., seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried 3-0-0.

Respectfully submitted by,
Lita Wallace, Clerk
Amber Cruz, Deputy Clerk

December 8, 2020 Township Board Meeting via teleconference

Meeting was called to order at 7:30 p.m. by Chair Kuettel.

Attendance: Town officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, Supervisor Donald Swanstrom, Supervisor Douglas Dressen, Clerk Lita Wallace, Treasurer Raymond G. Barnes.

Clerk’s Report: Since the meeting was conducted via teleconference, the supervisors read the November 10, 2020 minutes from the town webpage. Dressen motioned to approve the minutes, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Treasurer’s Report

NOVEMBER 2020
Total Funds on hand as of 11/01/2020 (Includes Investments) – $171,717.42
Plus: Deposits – $135.50
Interest on Accounts – $135.50
Less: Disbursements (November) – $1,648.33
First Half Snowplowing Township Road – $1,121.25
Other Disbursements – $527.08
Total Funds on hand as of 11/30/2020 – $170,204.59
November Check # 1599 – 1605

DECEMBER 2020
Claims (December) – $885.88
December Check # 1606 – 1613
No transfers to the Checking Account will be needed

Dressen motioned to approve the November 2020 Treasurer’s Report and Claims for December 2020, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Old Business

  • West Branch Road update: a supervisor will check the plowing turnaround area with damages on newly planted trees
  • Future voting and meetings update:
    1. Location of the Annual Townhall and March Town Board meetings will be discussed at the January Town Board Meeting.
    2. There were 134 residents that voted during the November 3 General Election which was conducted by St. Louis County via mail-in voting.
    3. January meeting will be conducted via teleconference.
    4. Swanstrom motioned and Dressen seconded to schedule the Board of Audit Meeting and Budget Meeting on Tuesday, January 26, at 7:00p.m. Motion carried, 3-0-0. These are open meetings.
    5. Wallace reported that due to COVID-19, the municipal governing body may authorize mail balloting by resolution for the March 2021 town election. And also due to COVID-19, two of the election judges are not available to serve and back-up judges may also not be available. Due to the worsening situation with the virus and not knowing what it will be like in March, Dressen motioned to submit a resolution to conduct mail balloting during the March 2021 town election, Swanstrom seconded, motion carried, 3-0-0.
  • Update on the deputy clerk and deputy treasurer open positions:
    1. Discussion will include possible letter to township residents and the possible dismantling of the township if we can’t fill the open positions.
    2. Wallace reported that as of this date, there were no applicants for the deputy clerk/clerk position. Kuettel instructed Wallace to put together an advertisement for clerk position in the Duluth News Tribune, must reside in Duluth or surrounding area.
    3. Barnes reported that Lynne Scalzo applied for the treasurer position. Swanstrom motioned, Dressen seconded to accept the hire of Scalzo as treasurer-in-training, motion carried, 3-0-0.
    4. Kuettel presented a rough draft of a letter for residents requesting assistance in finding an individual to apply for the clerk position and explaining the possible scenario in case one is not found.
  • LBAE supervisor training: Kuettel had completed the training

New Business

  • Polling place and resolution for 2021 elections: Pequaywan Firehall has been designated as the polling place for March 2021 elections per Town Resolution # 2020-008, Resolution Designating Annual Polling Place
  • Report open town officer position/s to St. Louis County for March town election: one supervisor position is open

Correspondence

Received:

  • Newsletters via email from Minnesota Association of Townships re-polling place designation for 2021; and operational guidelines operating the township amid
    COVID-19
  • Email from EDDMapS (Early Detection & Distribution Mapping System) coordinator confirming that a local EDDMapS verifier has verified that plant determinations submitted by Deb Pomroy, town’s Noxious Weed Inspector, on August 5, 2020, was correct and will be publicly available on maps and download
  • Schedule of SLCAT meeting for December 2020 to March 2021 meetings
  • Email from St. Louis County’s COVID-19 weekly partner communications with information on the new COVIDawareMN app that will notify the population if someone who’s been near them later test positive for coronavirus, COVIDaware MN | State of Minnesota COVID-19 exposure notification applicatio

Sent: None

Public Comment: None

Next Meeting, January 12, 2021, 7:30 p.m., via teleconference

Adjourn meeting: Swanstrom motioned to adjourn the meeting at 8:45 p.m., seconded by Dressen, motion carried 3-0-0.

Respectfully submitted by,
Lita Wallace, Town Clerk

November 10, 2020 Township Board Meeting

Meeting was called to order at 7:34 p.m. by Chair Kuettel.

Attendance: Town officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, Supervisor Donald Swanstrom,

Supervisor Douglas Dressen, Clerk Lita Wallace, Treasurer Raymond G. Barnes.

Clerk’s Report: Since the meeting was conducted via teleconference, the supervisors read the Ocotober 13, 2020 Minutes from the town webpage. Swanstrom motioned to approve the minutes, seconded by Dressen, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Treasurer’s Report

OCTOBER 2020

Total Funds on hand as of 10/01/2020 (Includes Investments) – $172,757.54
Plus: Deposits – $2,081.11
CARES Election Grant ($449.00)
Transfer to Building/Property Fund from General Fund ($1500.00)
Interest on Accounts ($132.11)
Less: Disbursements (October) – $3,121.23
Transfer from General Fund to Building/Property Fund ($1500.00)
Other Disbursements ($1621.23)
Total Funds on hand as of 10/31/2020 – $171,717.42
October Check # 1593 – 1598

NOVEMBER 2020

Claims (November) – $1648.33 (includes snowplowing bill)
November Check # 1599 – 1605
No transfers to the Checking Account will be needed

Dressen motioned to approve the October 2020 Treasurer’s Report and Claims for November 2020, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Old Business

  • Update on West Branch Road – some residents have expressed concern on trees going down partly in township area. No update yet whether the repair on West Branch Road had been completed.
  • Discussion on upcoming township meetings – with the uncertainty of the effects of COVID-19, the township will continue to meet via teleconference and will keep discussing monthly. For the election and Annual Town Meeting in March, the township will try to find a location to conduct the election and the meeting. Barnes will check with the Snowmobile Club if their building can be used.
  • Update on clerk and treasurer positions – The position for clerk and treasurer are still open. No application has been received as of this date. Barnes will talk with the incoming North Star clerk if she might be interested. The only problem is that she cannot be in two places during the Annual Town Meeting. Kuettel requested Wallace if she will be available to conduct the Annual Meeting and serve as Deputy Clerk. Wallace agreed.
  • Dressen mentioned that there was a situation when an individual called asking about the vehicle axle weight limit in West Branch Road but has no idea how big the equipment is.

New Business

  • Invasive weed report – Deborah Pomroy, Town of Pequaywan Weed Inspector, reported that she completed the submission of the required Noxious Weed Survey Report online via EDDMaps to St. Louis County Land Department. She mentioned that other government agencies such as the MN Department of Agriculture reviews the report but nothing has been done by the agencies.

Correspondence

Received:

  • Email from Minnesota Association of Townships re-the 2020 MAT Educational Conference and Annual Meeting schedules
  • Various emails from St. Louis County Elections re- upcoming General Election on November 3
  • Email from Frontier Communications verifying if they need a permit for a work to be done on the township between homes 9196 and 9182 West Branch Road
  • Email from Minnesota Association of Townships re-2020 MAT Educational Conference and Annual Meeting on November 20 to be held via Zoom webinar due to the pandemic
  • Email from St. Louis County Association of Townships re-Agenda for October 28 Zoom meeting, minutes of February 2020 meeting, minutes of the 56th Annual meeting on May 22, 2019 and the By-laws
  • Snowplowing bill for West Branch Road from St. Louis County Public Works Department in the amount of $1,121.25 for 1st half of 2020-2021
  • Bill from Deborah Pomroy, Pequaywan Township weed inspector, in the amount of $200.00, for the survey completed in two areas specified in the report below
  • Bill from Minnesota Association of Townships Insurance Trust in the amount of $255.00 for Worker’s Compensation premium covering 1/1/2021-1/1/2022 due 1/1/2021

Sent:

  • Minnesota Unemployment Insurance and the Minnesota State Withholding Reports have been filed electronically with the State of Minnesota by Barnes
  • Noxious Weed Survey Report of burning site on township land located at T54N R12W NE1/4 of NE1/4 Sec 19 and weed survey of St. Louis County gravel pit located at T54N R12W NE1/4 of SE1/4 Sec 18 was submitted by Deborah Pomroy to St. Louis County Land Department thru EDDMapS, http://www.eddmaps.org/
  • Submitted the Resolution Adopting the Minnesota Township General Records Retention Schedule to Minnesota Historical Society – confirmed received on 11/10/2020

Public Comment:

  • Outdoor lighting – the individual that requested this topic was not able to join the meeting but the supervisors agreed that it is a concern. They could make recommendations but the township cannot enforce it.

Next Meeting, December 8, 2020, 7:30 p.m., via teleconference

Swanstrom motioned to adjourn the meeting at 8:16 p.m., seconded by Dressen, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Respectfully submitted by,
Lita Wallace, Town Clerk

October 13, 2020 Township Board Meeting

Meeting was called to order at 7:34 p.m. by Chair Kuettel.

Attendance: Town officers: Supervisor Charles Kuettel, Supervisor Donald Swanstrom, Supervisor Douglas Dressen, Clerk Lita Wallace, Treasurer Raymond G. Barnes, Recording Secretary Marialice Arndt

Guests: Richard Arndt, Lisa Klassen, Paul Klassen, Shane Stolp, John Wilson

Clerk’s Report: Since the meeting was conducted via teleconference, the supervisors read the September 8, 2020 minutes from the town webpage. Dressen motioned to approve the minutes with spelling correction of his last name, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Treasurer’s Report

SEPTEMBER 2020

Total Funds on hand as of 09/01/2020 (Includes Investments) – $174,718.78
Plus: Deposits – $135.21
Interest on Accounts ($135.21)
Less: Disbursements (September) – $2,096.45
Total Funds on hand as of 09/30/2020 – $172,757.54
September Check # 1580 – 1592

OCTOBER 2020
Claims (October) – $1621.23
October Check # 1593 – 1598
No transfers to the Checking Account will be needed

Dressen motioned to approve the September 2020 Treasurer’s Report and Claims for October 2020, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Old Business

  • Update on the West Branch Road repairs: Kuettel stated that part of the work was done and will be completed the week of October 19.
  • Tree branch drop off site update: Kuettel mentioned that tree drop off is done for the year and dates for 2021 will be scheduled in the spring. Motion by Dressen to close the tree drop off site for 2020 and to request Pequaywan Volunteer Fire Department to burn the pile after a snow fall, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried 3-0-0.
  • LBAE training: Supervisor Dressen had scheduled a mid November date to complete the training. Supervisor Swanstrom has not completed the training.
  • Position opening for deputy clerk: At this time there has been no application received for the deputy clerk position. Ray Barnes will discuss the position with an interested party when North Star Township meet this Thursday. Supervisor Dressen suggests that meetings go through Zoom for more interest in the meetings in general but also for the deputy clerk position.

New Business

  • Monthly town board meetings and upcoming meetings and elections including budget meeting, board of audit meeting, annual town meeting, board of canvass meeting, reorganization meeting, LBAE meeting, and annual town election: Discussions need to be had about safety protocol for meetings and election or locate a larger capacity location. Pequaywan Firehall can accommodate up to 13 people. The snowmobile club is 40×60 and may be a solution as the grooming equipment will not be housed until after April 1st. If Zoom is considered a practice, run would be prudent.
  • Wallace reported that the township received CARES election grant funding from the state through St. Louis County to assist the township with 2020 election cycle preparation and related costs due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the amount of $449.00. The amount submitted was for $515.98. The default allocation included the following factors: a flat base allocation for all counties, 2018 voter turnout, 2018 absentee voter turnout, number of registered voters, number of polling places, and population.
  • Barnes will create a new fund titled Building Property and Maintenance Fund in the amount of $1,500.00 which will come from the General Fund.
  • Town residents Marialice Arndt, Richard Arndt and John Wilson proposed to install a flagpole, a landscape rock and a granite plaque in the corner of West Branch Road with the landowner’s approval. Motion by Dressen for Richard Arndt to apply for a Cooperative Light & Power (CLP) Roundup Grant to install a flagpole at the corner of West Branch Road using the township as Representative Organization, seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Correspondence

Received:

  • Email from Brian Fritsinger, St. Louis County Administrator re-CARES grant to Small Cities and Town to reimburse election and non-election expenses incurred related to COVID-19
  • Email from Phil Chapman, St. Louis County Elections re-CARES grant for reimbursement of expenses related to election in the amount of $449.00
  • Email from Lora Skarman of St. Louis County Assessor’s Office re-LBAE Minnesota training for 2021 LBAE meeting

Sent:

  • Submitted the CARES grant reimbursement form for election expenses related to COVID-19 in the amount of $449.00 to St. Louis County

Public Comment:

  • Short term rental/license: St. Louis County Ordinance 62 will go into effect in January 2021. Chair Kuettel said that Pequaywan Township has no jurisdiction for enforcement of short term rental/license as that is the role of the county.

Next Meeting, November 10, 2020, 7:30 p.m., via teleconference

Dreseen motioned to adjourn the meeting at 8:29 p.m., seconded by Swanstrom, motion carried, 3-0-0.

Minutes was taken by Marialice Arndt, Recording Secretary

Respectfully submitted by,
Lita Wallace, Town Clerk