Crane Lake, Minnesota Water & Sanitary District  
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Wednesday, September 4, 2019 –6:00 P.M.


The meeting was called to order by Chairman Rob Scott at 6:05PM.

Members present:  Mark Anderson, Nick Roth, and Rob Scott. 

Members absent:   Bruce Beste and Darrell Scott.

Also present:  Jason Chopp of S.E.H., District Liaison Deena Congdon, Clerk/Treasurer Jo Ann Pohlman and 1 member of the community.

Minutes: A motion was made by M. Anderson, supported by N. Roth, to approve the minutes of the 8/7/19 Board of Managers’ Meeting.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.

Correspondence:  The correspondence list was reviewed by the Board.  A motion was made by N. Roth, supported by M. Anderson, that the correspondence be placed on file and acted upon as required.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.

Treasurer’s Report:  Clerk/Treasurer J. Pohlman reviewed the Treasurer’s Report. The July 2019 Financial Statements were presented to the Board.  August 2019 payroll:  Admin – $1,804.05; Operating – $4,699.30; and Payroll Taxes – $1,336.18. August 30th $58,940.00 was transferred from Debt Service Savings to Checking for cash flow purposes and will be returned to Savings when Legacy money is received.  A motion was made by M. Anderson, supported by R. Scott, to approve the Treasurer’s Report as presented, the payment of bills previously paid, and the payment of bills as follows:  Admin:  Costin Group – $1,274.00; ; Fryberger Buchanan – $1,544.40; Glorvigen – $252.00; League of MN Cities – $1,954.00; LMCIT – $1,320.00; Lutefisk Tech. – $16.95; and Quill – $102.52.  Annexation Fund: Fryberger, Buchanan – $2,491.60 and S.E.H. – $997.49.  Operating:  Lake Country Power – $892.70, $285.09, $46.68, $45.10, $46.00, & $52.00; Anderson Outfitters – $259.87; L&M – $143.25; Northwoods True Value – $88.45; Pelican Bay Foods – $432.90; LMCIT – $4,223.00; Robert J. Scott – $1,906.92; Rutchasky Enterprises – $330.00; and USIC Locating Service – $30.00.   The following bills were paid out of Legacy Fund II during August:  Rutchasky Enterprises – $29,935.00, $29,395.00, & $29,545.00; Orton Construction – $750.00; and St. Louis County – $520.00. All voted in favor and the motion carried.

Funding Balances:  An accounting of the Legacy II Funds was provided to the Board.


  • Levy:  Chairman Scott stated that the District has a responsibility to keep the levy at a reasonable level.  The funds need to be managed around July and December receipt dates from St. Louis County.  The Fund needs to maintain enough money from the end of the year until July of the following year, when payment is received.  2020 will be the fourth year that the levied amount will be less then the projected expenses.  The Fund had been maintaining a large balance; which the District has successfully reduced over the past five years.  A motion was made by M. Anderson, supported by R. Scott, to set the 2019, payable 2020, levy at $40,000.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.  The levy amount will be reviewed in December when the Board may raise or lower the amount. 
  • Management Plan:  R. Scott met with St. Louis County representatives to discuss Phase III (mandatory) of the District’s Management System Program.  The CLWSD does have the option to call all sewer generating properties under the management program. However, the needed resources and manpower requirements are currently not available.
  • Auditor:  The District has been looking for a new auditor for the required yearly audit.  Walker, Giroux and Hahne has been selected.  A motion was made by R. Scott, supported by N. Roth, to approve Walker, Giroux, and Hahne as the District’s auditor for the 2018 audit at a cost of $7,000 to $7,250.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.
  • Liability Coverage Waiver Form:  A motion was made by M. Anderson, supported by R. Scott, that the District does not waive the monetary limits on municipal tort liability established by Minn. Stat. 466.04.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.

Joint Powers Board

  • VNP Comprehensive Plan:  The August meeting was held in Crane Lake.  The JPB Comprehensive Plan is being reviewed at a desktop level to determine the end game for the VNP Clean Water Project.  Funding needed for the project needs to be reviewed going forward.  Ash River has received more funding and are in the process of forming a board of 5 with 6 applicants.  Island View is in the process of installing grinder stations.  Crane Lake has been approved for $600,000 Legacy funding.  The next meeting will be in Kabetogama.
  • Kicker Blvd. Annex:  The project is temporarily on hold.

CLWSD Meeting Minutes – September 4, 2019

Joint Powers Board (Cont.)

  • State and Federal Grant Funding:  The contract for the Crane Lake MPCA Legacy Funding is in process.  The funding is for continuation of new ISTS installations and related expenses.

S.E.H. Engineering  

  • District Update:  Jason Chopp was present to report on the following:  Sweet property grinder status – the grinder station basin must be replaced.  It will be replaced this weekend or the beginning of next week.  The basin and labor are under warranty.  The contractor, Bougalis and Sons, has been in contact with the Sweets.  A motion was made by M. Anderson, supported by R. Scott, to issue a credit to the Sweets for four months on the September billing.  All voted in favor and the motion carried. 
  • Land Purchase and Easement:  The Cowdens are in the process of a land purchase near the District’s waste water treatment plant and have requested an easement for road access and purchase of 3 acres of the District’s land near the plant.  It is understood that the District may sell land at current market value.  The paper work would need to go to the USDA RD for approval.  The expenses for legal work related to the easement and land purchase would be the Cowden’s.  Jason Chopp will work with Mia Thibodeau of Fryberger, Buchanan on the land purchase and road easements.  A motion was made by R. Scott, supported by M. Anderson, to sell 3 acres of CLWSD property to the Cowdens at $1,200 per acre.  All voted in favor and the motion carried. 

O & M. Decentralized

  • Management Program Update:  Deena Congdon informed the Board that the work at Cunningham’s and Moore’s has been completed.  Work at the Filippi property is in progress.  Future work will be at the Gove, Hagen, Wiessner, Schwanke, and CL Snowmobile Club properties.  McVeety property still requires completion.  The District is waiting for the Permit to Construct for the Smerillo property and the paper work is in process for the Cowden’s new property.
  • System Reviews:  New systems that have been in operation for a year or more will be reviewed by the District.

O & M Centralized

  • Operations Report Rob Scott Jr. provided the following report:  I hope everyone had a pleasant Labor Day weekend. The plant operation went smoothly for the month of August.  We met all the effluent limitations for the past month. The total coliform count seemed to be increasing marginally over the last two months, so I bought new UV lights and they were replaced August 24th. This should help keep these numbers under the MPCA limits. The Sweet’s cabin issue seems to be coming closer to a resolution. It sounds like Wednesday September 4th Bougalis will be installing a new tank that will replace the existing one that seems to be too small for the grinder pump to run effectively. Let’s hope this issue will be resolved with this installation. One thing we should do for the Sweet’s is to offer some kind of compensation for all the problems they have had to endure. My thought is to offer some free service, anywhere from 3 to 6 months at no charge? Whatever we offer to the Sweet’s, we should be looking at getting reimbursement from Bougalis as this should be a warranty issue. Plus we should also be looking to getting some reimbursement for the time Lance and Nick have invested in this issue.
  • Other Operations Issues:  M. Anderson reported that the pumper truck was down again and parts have been ordered.  The main filtration pump at the plant went out and has been replaced. 
  • Inventories:  Nick continues to work on inventories of cement blankets, tools, pumps, etc.  Nick will provide an accounting of tarps needed for the coming cold season. The District will look into providing pins to secure the tarps.
  • Voyagaire Houseboat Pumping:  M. Anderson reported that things are working well.
  • Bio-solids Hauling:  3 or 4 more trips to Grand Rapids Utility may be needed this year.
  • Maintenance Facility Options:  M. Anderson reported that he had received a quote of $4,500 for a 40’ insulated container to be used as a storage garage at the plant.  A motion was made by R. Scott, supported by N. Roth, to authorize M. Anderson to spend up to $10,000 on the project, including electrical hook-up.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.

PUBLIC COMMENTS (5 Minute Limit):  Warren Bradbury stated that he was pleased with the District’s decision to not pursue mandatory inclusion in the Management Program at this time.  He also commented on the issue of properties that are polluting that the District is unable to pursue due to County Ordinance 61.  He also asked if there was any restriction on who, outside of the District’s Management System, could have their system pumped.  There is no restriction and all requests would be referred to Rutchasky Enterprises.

CLWSD Meeting Minutes – September 4, 2019

The meeting was adjourned at 7:10PM

Jo Ann Pohlman, Clerk


This draft of the CLWSD minutes has been posted solely for preliminary informational purposes.  Minutes are unofficial and subject to change until they have been approved by the CLWSD Board of Managers.

Crane Lake Water & Sanitary District
P.O. Box 306 · Crane Lake, Minnesota 55725
© 2001 CLWSD